So I’ve finally, finally got the Cats & Co colouring book published. This one has taken me so long to finish, what with Dad’s illness and being especially busy at work, but I’m really pleased with the way it’s turned out. The drawings are based on photos from Warren Photographic, who have some amazing pictures on their website.
Wow. It really has been too long since I’ve posted. There sits the post for my last book, and here I am with another one. This time I’ve filled a book with drawings of dogs, and having hit the publish button last Tuesday I’m suffering from the usual crisis of confidence as I wait for it to sell. I know these are my best drawings yet, I feel I’m improving with each book, but that doesn’t mean that it will compete with the many other doggy colouring books. So I’ll just leave you with my favourite drawing this time around. The bulldog.
It’s been a good while now since I posted, partly because life suddenly became very busy at the end of last year. My dad was taken into hospital on his 85th birthday in November and spend the whole of Christmas there. For the first few weeks he was in a hospital some miles away, and as my mum was determined to visit him every evening and my brother had a broken arm, this gave me the happy task of driving her over there. Thankfully we’re now looking to get him back home again, albeit with a heavy package of carers.
Luckily for me the stress relieving properties seem to extend to the drawing of colouring books as well as the colouring side, and I managed to publish my Rabbits and Hares colouring book just in time for the Christmas rush. The Peaceful Patterns book followed and was published on Christmas day. Not a traditional day to bring out a new book, but the day afforded a break from both my day job and hospital visiting as other family members were eager to have their chance to visit. Self publishing does cut out the delays in publishing a book – once it’s ready to go, it can.
So now I hope it’s not quite too late to wish you a Happy New Year. I hope 2016 turns out to be a good one for you.
Once again I’ve inflicted a new colouring book upon the world. This is getting to be a habit. This one is full of snowflakes, which was the book I did alongside my fanciful rats just to give me a break from drawing ratties all the time.
Mostly in order to see how it works, I’ve set up an Amazon giveaway for Simply Snowflakes. It will only work for those with a US postal address, but it looks like a useful way of promoting my books and hopefully it will give the book an initial boost to get it going.
I’m still in that parallel universe where my books are selling really well. In fact, Fanciful Rats is now outselling the original Butterflies book, although there’s a split between the .co.uk and .com sites, with Butterflies and Fanciful Rats selling well in the UK, but only Fanciful Rats doing well in the US. I think that probably emphasises the importance of networking, because the Butterflies book was shared mostly by my own friends spreading the word on facebook whereas Fanciful Rats was shared more widely through rat forums and groups.
The latest news on the book front is that I’m currently drawing a book of bunnies, alongside a book of patterns as a break. It’s going to be a while before I get all thirty bunny pictures done as I’m still learning how bunny shapes go.
The latest rat news is that I’ve yet again mated up one of my girls, Crystal Tips this time, so I’m now waiting to see if she will give me a litter of little ratlets. We’ll see.
The Fanciful Rats colouring book went live late last Sunday and is selling better than I anticipated, although presumably mostly to people I know. I’m really pleased with the way it turned out, albeit a little nervous that it won’t be to everyone’s taste. There are only so many ways you can draw a rat to colour in without drawing patterns all over him or her.
This is my sample image from the book. There are a lot of different styles in this book, so it was hard to choose which image to represent them all. If you know of any groups or forums that would like this, I would appreciate it very much if you would share it.
That’s what it feels like. Just slightly out of phase, like one of those parallel universes in the science fiction stories where there’s just one small detail that is different to my own world. That one difference being that my butterflies colouring book is selling amazingly well in the UK, with an Amazon bestseller ranking of 605 earlier today and 31 sales yesterday. I can’t help expecting to slip back into the real world, where my books sell a couple of copies a week.
While I was drawing the butterflies my husband sat at his PC expressing his disbelief in the current adult colouring boom. ‘They’re probably just buying them for their children in the school holidays’. I could have pointed out that it’s equally unlikely that grown men would spend hours in their workshops laboriously scraping surface plates flat. When it comes down to it, it’s a hobby, like knitting or embroidery, or metalwork. His scraping probably generates the same calm alpha waves that people are claiming for colouring-in.
I’m getting on fairly steadily with drawing the rats colouring book. It’s a little like the butterflies in that focusing on a single topic allows you to experiment more with the style. I’ve also started on a third book with a more wintry theme, which is giving me a break from the rats when inspiration is lacking.
I’ve had something of a side project on the go. When my children were little I used to draw butterflies for them to colour in. They would stick them to pencils and run around making them flutter.
Somewhere along the way the world has caught up and drawing things to colour in is once again a useful skill, so I’ve revisited the pastime and made a book full of butterflies to colour in. (I don’t expect anyone to cut them out and run around with them this time.)
Here’s a colouring sheet to give an idea of what the pictures are like. This butterfly isn’t in the book, I kept her free to fly the Internet. It would be great if you could share her picture wherever you want to.
The new interest in colouring for adults has brought back happy memories for me. The thing I enjoy most about colouring is that there are no rules about how to colour. You don’t have to cover the whole sheet, you can just pick out the pieces of design that appeal to you and leave other areas white. Black is another useful way to add emphasis to areas. If there’s an area of hatching, you don’t have to pick out each line, you can use an overall colour and let the pattern speak for itself. Everyone enjoys a different style of pattern and colouring, but there are certainly enough books to please everyone nowadays. Colour away!