It’s really quite strange when suddenly the thing that all your thoughts and efforts and motivations for the past
five twelve years have been pushing towards happens. It’s at once the most fulfilling and the most emptying experience I’ve ever had. People have constantly been asking me how it feels and in all honesty I don’t know. It does not quite feel real.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s wonderful that the fruit of my labours is out there, a real book in real bookshops for real people to pick up and buy and read. It’s wonderful that some of those people have liked it, and some have said very nice things, even in public places like Amazon and Stylist Magazine. I’ve even been in the paper and I’ve been on Radio 4. I’ve been interviewed and I’ve guest-blogged and I’ve given talks and even enjoyed giving them. I feel like I’ve achieved something of value, and it’s been amazing to meet people who’ve read it and think so too.
But I’ve also been missing having a project. After so many years tethered to Lighter Than My Shadow, I feel a bit disorientated now that it’s finished. I keep having new ideas for it, forgetting that it’s done and dusted and out there. In some ways I want it back, not because I’m unhappy with what I did but because I miss the doing.
People keep asking me, “What’s next?” and I get grumpy, because that book took me 5 years to draw and they read it in two hours and they want more already? But as I’m adjusting to the feeling of my first book being ‘done,’ I’m also adjusting to the notion that this – drawing, book-making – might be what I do. So yes, I hope there will be another.
And if you really can’t wait, of course, there is another. The Crystal Mirror, written by Tim Malnick and illustrated by me, is published by Vala next week. More, including details of the book launch coming soon…