But this post isn't about that book, it is about my new children's book! (If you're new here, you may not remember that my first short ebook and children's book release dates stacked up like this, too. It is apparently my thing. This concerns me, because while I already have a pretty solid draft of what I hope will be my third children's book, I have no current plans to write another short ebook. Clearly, I'll need to change that.)
Anyway, back on topic.
I am beyond excited to show you the cover of my new children's book, Petunia, the Girl Who Was NOT a Princess, which is coming out October 20 (mark your calendars!):
|Interestingly, Petunia looks a little bit like me. But I don't have bangs. Anymore.|
|That tree does NOT look like the tree in our backyard, though. Our tree is an avocado tree.|
The book is about Petunia, a little girl who is not at all princessy, but is surrounded by princesses. She is lonely and wants a friend who will climb trees, build towers, and play ball with her. A new family moves in next door, and Petunia is disappointed to find that the new little girl is another %$#@*! princess, but- wait for it- Penelope turns out to like to climb trees, and build towers, and ball, too.
Because, you know, being princessy is just one aspect of a girl's personality. One might even say it is completely orthogonal to interest in building towers or playing ball.
The book came out of my frustration with the way our culture seems to write off little girls who love princesses, as if they can't also love all sorts of other things. Pumpkin loved princesses and LEGO. I even wrote about how stupid she thought it was to get a LEGO castle that didn't have a princess in it. (I note with some satisfaction that LEGO seems to have fixed this in its newer castle sets. Hell, you can get Disney Princess LEGOnow. Yes, we have some.) Petunia loves princesses and trains and cars. And soccer. (Here's a fact that might surprise people who know me as a kickboxing-loving, mostly pants wearing woman- the closest I have ever come to dropping out of STEM was in grad school, when I struggled to integrate my feminine side with my science side.)
You may note that my daughter Petunia has a namesake in the story. The funny thing is, she doesn't know her blog name is Petunia (she doesn't know what a blog is). This story is part of Petunia's bedtime routine, just like the zebra story was (and sometimes still is) part of Pumpkin's bedtime routine. In my mind, Penelope is the clear hero of my story because she is the one who realizes that loving sparkles and bows only means that you love sparkles and bows. Petunia, though, calls it the "tuna story" and identifies with Petunia.
But then, she also favors Elsa over Anna, and as we all know, Anna is the hero of that story.
To be fair, I did put Petunia in the title. But Penelope, the Princess Who Knows What's What didn't seem like a very good title.
Anyway- in a little less than a month you can have this book. It will be available as an ebook and a hardcover. I love the illustrations, and think my message would do a lot of people (kids and grown ups!) some good to read. Also, I like money. So I'm hoping it does really well! If you'd like to help me with that, I'm looking for volunteers to review it. You'll get an electronic advance copy and my undying gratitude, and all you have to do in return is write an honest review of the book. You do not need a blog to volunteer- Amazon reviews are awesome, too. And if you end up hating the book, you're welcome to say that in your review. If you're interested in volunteering, email me at wandsci at gmail dot com, or tweet at me.
Also- my publisher and I are planning our promotions for this book. One thing we'll be doing is a giveaway (or two?) associated with people talking about the book on social media. Details will be forthcoming closer to the release date, but in the meantime, start thinking about how you'd tell the world that your sparkle-hating child is #notaprincess or how your little sparkle-fiend is #notjustaprincess, because kids are unique individuals, not stereotypes.