I’m having fun in the 3rd grade, working toward ten poems for that group, and yesterday it occurred to me that I have a good many poems in my files that I’ve written for one reason or another over the years but not published, some of which might be right for this project.
I’m sitting here, scanning and weighing, setting aside one here and there. Up to eight with possibilities. I think there will be more. One or two seem to fit younger grades, another few would be better for 4th or 5th graders. Each poem I can find that works saves me a day or two of new work so it’s all good.
Yesterday I got a look at two versions of a cover design for my upcoming autobiography. It’s exciting (for me that is) to have come this far. I like the designer’s work and look forward to completing this last step prior to going to print.
I don’t have a hard pub date yet, but we’re getting close. Details before many more weeks on how to get a copy of THIS LIFE, by David L. Harrison.
I’ve heard from BONNIE BELL, my host for the interview on KWTO Talk Radio about the time and place on the dial for anyone who wants to listen to our chat this evening (Sunday, October 2).
In Springfield, it’s 93.3 on the dial and starts at 8:00 CT. If you’d like to choose a better time for you, beginning tomorrow (Monday the 3rd), you can use the podcast off their website at 933kwto.com. Bonnie and I go way back. She’s a great interviewer and we always enjoy our times together. The conversation ranges across the spectrum of my career as a writer of books for children and touches on my soon-to-be-published autobiography.Hope to hear you there.
Five years after Western Publishing brought out my first book in 1969, my editor got in touch to say they had reached an agreement to publish the first ever picture book starring none other than the THE PINK PANTHER cartoon, made famous by pulling the credits across the screen to open the wonderful, zany movie released in 1963 starring PETER SELLERS as a bumbling French detective, JACQUES CLOUSEAU. HENRY MANCINI’s genius created a theme song for the panther that made everyone smile from the opening bars. Would I like to write the first picture about The Pink Panther? Well let me think about it. I did have a question though. Could I let the panther talk? Give him words? Friends? Otherwise, uh, how could I make up a story? Answer came back. yes. I was in business. PINK PANTHER IN THE HAUNTED HOUSE was issued the followed year, 1975.
No sooner was the first PP book off my desk when I was asked to write a second one. The first was for Golden Books. The second would appear as a Tell-A-Tale book. Back to work. THE PINK PANTHER RIDES AGAIN came out in 1976.
Another letter. How about a BIG LITTLE BOOK? What’s that? You now, the pages are small. The flip the edges to see action in the upper right corner? How many of those “little” pages? Uh, 250. I calculated it would take roughly 10,000 words to write a BIG LITTLE BOOK. Sigh.
THE PINK PANTHER ADVENTURES IN Z-LAND somehow managed to make it out in 1976. By then I’d had my fill of that fun-loving panther. I didn’t care how adored he was, I was weary of his company. I was asked if I would consider doing a fourth story. As politely as possible, I took a pass.