Wednesday, February 6, 2013

My Juvenilia: A Cat

When I was in Kindergarten, I had a sort of epiphany--the epiphany went something like this:

I like books!!!!
But where do books come from?
They don't just appear out of nowhere.
*Gasp!* Someone has to MAKE them?!!!!
How fun!! How fun to make a book!!!
That's what I'm going to do!! I'm going to make a book!!!

I imagine this epiphany involved a very serious conversation with my mom, because before I knew it, I was in the living room, surrounded by my "Publishing House." My "printing press" was my baby doll's high chair. Then of course I had my illustration desk and my writing desk and so on.

And I did not leave until I made a book.

The result? The 1990 Newberry award-winning classic, A Cat. 

It appears that early on in life, I desired to be mononymous. It was quite epic of me, really. That, or I couldn't spell my last name.

Sorry for the low quality images ...scanner was having difficulty with the staples.
Wow! What a fantastic opening line. It evokes suspense and concern. Truly, an attention-grabber. Brilliant! Now, if only someone would have told me that despite my left-handed tendencies, page numbers for all right-side pages go...on the right.

Is it just me, or am I getting lazier with my illustrations? I mean Cat used to have thicker legs, right? Also, the letter 'e' was a doozie to write.

I specifically remember drawing each and every one of those rug tassels. I was sure that more tassels = better artistic quality. Boy, I was right. Those tassels are spot on.

 And there it is! The great conclusion!! What IRONY! What symbolism!! (And in case you can't see it, that gray blob amidst the black blob is the mouse, standing in his mouse hole. Laughing, of course. Just like my super-comedic manuscript describes.)

P.s. I had to ask for my mom's help with spelling the -ing words.



  1. Oh, man. I was laughing so hard all the way through this...

  2. Oh good lord. The belly laughs. Your commentary beneath each page was too much. Reminds me of my second grade short story about a doe named Feline. (I insisted everyone pronounce it Feh-leen, in perhaps an early nod to my future francophilia.) No illustrations, but you should've seen my supposedly human faces with features the size of goiters.

    1. Lol, I love the name-pronunciation part.

  3. Oh and the scared cat illustration is the real and true genius. (Not. Joking.)

  4. That was fantastic! I almost choked on my coffee when I saw the "Newberry" bit crossed out. :) Love the illustrations. You definitely have natural talent!

    1. Well, it was definitely in the running for the Newberry...

  5. My first book was also written at age 6. Must be something about it...

    It was called "How to Eat Mud Pie".It had some awesome pages that said things like "You put some roks [rocks] on it." and "You put some neklocis [necklaces, of course] on it." Then, the grand finale..."You eat it!"

    It'd be quite crunchy with the rocks and necklaces, of course. Not sure where my head was with that one...ha.

    But it was brilliant.

    Or, you know...something.