I've signed off on the illustration proofs for Kichi, so the time is nearing for it to come out. I'm really excited because it's a great story and it was technically the first big illustration job for me, even though LBKF came out first.
I hung up with Miriam when she called to hire me for Kichi, and I remember walking into the living room, and going, "Wait, did I just get a book deal?!" I was Miss Phone Courtesy and hadn't really absorbed what had just happened. I think my Dad must have felt much like I did when he finally got a hole in one (before he got his second hole in one in the same round, oh yeah, he did!). It was just such a freakin' relief! I knew there was a lot of work ahead of me, contracts, proofs, deadlines... but for a blessed few minutes I was walking on air. Nothing can really match that feeling. Even when LBKF came out, I was ecstatic but I'd already signed on for Kichi, and that first initial realization that I'd made it, crossed a finish line that was years in running for... that was a special feeling, and I carry part of it with me all the time now.
I even think it's special that I got the news when I was alone in the house. Sure my happy dance would have amused the hubby, but in a way I needed that time for myself. If anyone had been around, I would have their reaction joining mine, and maybe I would have tried to act differently. So I'm glad the lizards saw me jumping up and down... pet lizards tell no tales. :)