Happy March everyone! (How is it March already???). The first few months of this year have already turned out to be extremely full, and it’s therefore something of a relief to spend some time getting focussed on what I’m planning to work on this year. So, without further ado, here’s a little update of what I’ll be working on in 2019.
On the writing front, I’ve just completed a very rough draft of the book: Wall of Bones (the fourth book in the Vampire Skeleton series), and while I’m still working away at other projects—this is the one I’m going to focus on polishing over the next two months. So far I’ve started an initial schedule for all of the edits I need to get done for this book and will be diving into those over the next month. I don’t have a firm release date yet, but I anticipate it will happen in May or June of this year. Yay!
I’ve also been working on a poetry collection that’s tentatively titled, The Mourning Moon. This work is a series of poems, short stories and essays I wrote over the last two years while working on my dissertation and it’ll be accompanied by some of my newer paintings and sketches. I’m excited about this project because it emerged in a really organic way. It was in no way a project I set out to do (it wasn’t even my production schedule), but it nonetheless breathed its way into life as I went about grappling with my academic work. In many ways, this little collection helped keep me balanced and connected to my voice during the very draining work that was writing my dissertation. I’m both happy and nervous to share it. It’s an eclectic little work, but I hope you’ll find something to like in it. Because the book will include both poetry and art, I thought I might post snippets of my poems online as I work through the polishing process. Check out my Instagram page to follow along!
Formatting & Editing
I have two children books that I’m working on formatting right now. The first is a follow up to our Treaty Baby book. This book one is meant for a slightly older reader (grades K-2) and is written in the style of a poem. The second, is the next book in our language series—a little picture book that Kehte wrote and which I did the illustrations for. It is called, Akwajiya (My Family). We anticipate releasing both of these books through our Spirit & Intent website in 2019.
Audio Books & Podcasting & Film
I really want to do a podcast. I'm getting closer and closer to starting it. It's going to happen. This year. Stay tuned. I'm also determined to make audio books and a film of one of my short stories. Like all of my creative projects, these ones have been slowed down by my dissertation work, but I’ve still been chipping away at them. I’ve been reading books, taking notes, taking master classes, knowing that it will all happen, and when it does it will be awesome :).
Art & Illustration
Art has helped me so much over the last three years, and I really don’t know where I’d be without it. As mentioned in previous blogs, my art is really geared towards learning and teaching myself how to illustrate. As a result, I’ve been trying to deepen my practice and will continue trying to do so over the next several years. At some point, this might mean taking more formal training, but for now it means trying every day to create something—no matter how small. A scribble. A sketch. A painting.
This year, my focus is to introduce new elements and style into my work and also, to continue taking the courses that are available to me and enjoying the learning process. My style has continued to grow and evolve, which is wonderful. I still love working digitally with both the iPad Pro and my Wacom and for exactly the reasons I shared in my last update—they really empower me to create and experiment without fear—but I have to say, nothing is quite so wonderful as painting by hand and with gouache. No matter what, I find that the pieces I do by hand, always end up being my favourites. This year’s projects also include starting to work on developing a comic/graphic novel.
You can check out some of my newer work in my portfolio on my website. I’ve also been posting a lot of my works-in-progress on my Instagram account. And you can also order prints of my work through my Etsy store, if you are so inclined!
Phew! That felt like a lot, but all in all, I am genuinely happy to have any kind of creative practice at all, along with mechanisms to share that creativity with the world. Most of all (you’ll probably have noticed that throughout this post) I’m incredibly grateful that I’m almost done school, and will finally be able to devote myself to my creativity in the way that it deserves. I’m really, really looking forward to that :).
How about you? What creative projects are you working on right now?