Illustration Art Video For Our Next Book

Great news! Our hardback proof of The Shoebox arrived on Wednesday, and it looks really good! So that was the final print proof. No more changes! And a hardback book? What could be better?!? CluckŸ-BuckŸ!

The video is completely in black-and-white because all of the illustrations are also. We didn’t want to give the impression that anything will be in color, so even the title slide is in black-and-white. (The book jacket does have color.)

We really hope you will enjoy the video!

hardback with matte jacket, paperback with matte cover, 6” x 9,” 50 lb. white paper, 270 pages, 27 chapters with a full-page black-and-white illustration for each chapter

September 30th is the official publication date. Why not sign up for our weekly newsletter for more exciting news?!?

Thanks so much for reading—and watching!

John, Gracie, Bessie, Blanche, Pearl, Emily, and Amelia

One final note…Gracie is doing okay. She has her good days and her not-so-good days. That is, there are some days she relies on me more than on other days.

She and I are working together to get as much of her life down in notebooks while we can, but that does limit how much time we can spend on WordPress and social media.

We really appreciate those of you who have stuck with us even though we are not the best WordPress community members.

Third Year Anniversary for “My Life With Gracie”

Today, August 2nd, marked the Third Anniversary of “My Life With Gracie.” There have been a lot of changes over the past three years, but one thing has not changed: our appreciation for our readers who have helped us to grow and improve in more ways than we can count.

We especially appreciated our fans who have followed us over to “The Gracie Press Newsletter.” The format there gives us more opportunities to share illustrations and stories with our readers in a “kid safe, non-internet website” format.

To subscribe, just go to newsletter.GraciePress.com and provide your email address. You will receive an email to confirm your subscription. You must confirm to successfully complete your subscription. While you are there, you can read previous issues.

The newsletter is sent out every Friday at 9:20 AM (East Coast Time). We haven’t missed a week yet, but some had been delivered when we were using the popular and busy 9:30 AM time slot. That’s why we switched to 10 minutes earlier.

And if you haven’t followed us over to the newsletter, that’s okay. We still truly appreciate your continued support and encouragement here on “My Life With Gracie”! (We just aren’t posting as often here with new stories and illustrations.)

We like the newsletter because it allows easier sharing with others, but we do miss the conversations that the comments on WordPress allow.

Thanks again, everyone!

The Worm Olympics and a Short Lesson About the “Inner Critic”

This week’s issue of The Gracie Press Newsletter was sent out yesterday morning. If yours did not arrive in your email “inbox,” you may want to check your “junk” or “spam” folders. BUT there were some that were not sent at all, including my own (to a different email address than the one that I used to set up my newsletter account).

I have to say that is concerning! And in corresponding with someone here on WordPress, I discovered it has happened to some people for the past few weeks. That’s not good! We have been consistent in sending out newsletters every Friday at 9:30 AM for the past 14 weeks.

So if you have been wondering, “Where’s the newsletter?”…Gracie and I are going to do our best to get it corrected with the folks at Revue.

In the meantime, if you’ve been missing issues, you can catch up by using the links below.

The featured image, which you also see above, is in black-and-white, just as it will be in our next book. Reader feedback was overwhelmingly in favor of full-page chapter illustrations.

Due to the length of the book which is currently 246 pages, color is not an option. But then again, I don’t think black-and-white illustrations are such a bad thing…unless of course, I listened to my “inner critic”!

And I do think many of us do have an “Inner Critic.” Mine was working overtime about three years ago when I started drawing pictures of Gracie and my other chickens on sticky notes and scratch pads.

“No one is going to want to look at those!” said my inner critic.

But, of course, people did want to look at them.

“No one is going to want to read stories you write to go with those pictures!” said my inner critic.

But, of course, people did want to read them.

“Go ahead and waste your time writing and illustrating those books. No one is going to pay any attention to them!” said my inner critic.

Well, you can see where this is going, can’t you? The Shoebox will be our fourth book and our first book in a series titled Once Through a Garden Gate.

At 248 pages and over 34,000 words, I think it is fair to say, “Don’t listen to your inner critic!” Or as Gracie says, “Dance with your heart, and then take a leap of faith!”

While you are catching up with our newsletter, why not sign up as a subscriber? August will mark the Third Anniversary of sharing drawings and stories about Gracie, and we will have a special gift for our newsletter subscribers! Wow! Three Years!

You may wonder, “What’s different about the newsletter?” The newsletter shares what I am working on directly with our fans. Because it is an email, our fans can share it with others, particularly those who are young readers with no ads, no distractions, and no strange content. In a way, it’s sort of like sharing a bedtime story!

Also, unlike “My Life With Gracie,” there are no health updates like the ones I have given here from time to time. (In the newsletter, Blanche is still with us. Gracie doesn’t need my help to get up onto her favorite roosting spot at night.)

Another way to say this is that the newsletter anticipates these stories lasting beyond the lives of my chickens and well beyond my own life. That is our hope. We want to make the world a better place for everyone. And so we dance and then take a leap of faith.