Welcoming a Busy-Eyed Kidlit Editor!
I loved the unusualness of it. The language. The wide-open illustration possibilities. The way it explored an important concept—opening your eyes to the wonderfulness in the world around us—in such a fresh, unexpected, and deceptively simple way. The text is very spare, and I think Anne Marie was concerned that it wouldn’t quite make sense to me because she included an explanation of what she envisioned was happening in the story on a second page. But that wasn’t necessary--I knew I was buying this manuscript after reading the first few lines!
Do tell about the acquisition process.
Anne Marie has a terrific agent, Linda Pratt of Wernick & Pratt, who knows my taste very well. Linda knew I liked Anne Marie’s work, and she had a hunch I would love BUSY-EYED DAY. She was right! She sent it to me, and as soon as I finished reading it, I shared it with my colleagues who loved it as well.
What did you appreciate about Anne Marie’s attitude as she worked through the story’s revision?
Anne Marie is a fantastic reviser. Each time I asked an editorial question, she responded with thoughtful, creative ideas. For instance, at the very beginning of the process we talked about the possibility of adding a refrain to the text to help pull it together, and she came up with the perfect solution. Then, as the artwork began coming in, we found ourselves wondering if we should tweak the wording in a few spots to complement Frann Preston Gannon’s pictures. Again, Anne Marie’s revisions were pitch-perfect and really brought the book to a whole new level.
When you saw the text alongside the illustrations, what did you love about it?
The finished book turned out even more terrific than I’d hoped. Anne Marie’s text is a delightful read-aloud. And there’s so much for kids to discover in Frann’s pictures. I also love how Frann’s illustrations perfectly capture the original tone and vibe of Anne Marie’s text.
Why do you hope children will receive a copy of this book?
I think little listeners and readers will respond to the fantastic language and engaging rhythm of Anne Marie’s text. I think they’ll see themselves in the playful and curious cast of characters Frann created. And I hope they’ll be inspired to get outside and use their own eyes to observe and explore the wonderful world that surrounds us.
Order your copy of BUSY-EYED DAY from an indie near you.