People often ask me how it now feels to be an author. The question always stumps me. I’ve illustrated nearly 50 trade and educational books for kids. There’s no question I’m an illustrator. But as an author, I only have one book under my belt — It Jes’ Happened. The book published last year and won a New Voices honor from Lee & Low Books. It received three starred reviews from major review journals. It landed on several end-of-the-year best of lists. And it won an Ezra Jack Keats New Writer honor award. Still, I’d ponder, does one book make me an author? Or did I simply have a stroke of good luck? I’d feel more confident acknowledging myself as a working author if I could sell a second manuscript.
Well, my second manuscript has sold!
SLAVE POET OF CHAPEL HILL (tentative title), a children’s nonfiction picture book that I wrote and will illustrate, was acquired by Peachtree Publishers, sold by my agent, Caryn Wiseman of Andrea Brown Literary Agency.
So, how does it feel to be an author? Fantabulous! Indeed, I am an author.