Tuesday, November 5, 2013

My earliest published work

When kids ask my advice on a career in writing or illustrating, I say “Start now.”

If you’re old enough to write a semi-coherent story (around 3rd grade, typically), you’re old enough to start experiencing the joys, challenges, and disappointments of both the writing process (research, revision, etc.) and the trying-to-get-published process. There are established outlets for kids as young as eight, not to mention whatever opportunities aspiring young creators create for themselves.

Here are pieces of my writing and art that were published before I graduated college:

 At age 9, I won a contest sponsored my hometown newspaper,
the Cheshire (CT) Herald; the challenge: write a poem about your mom for Mother's Day.
When they told me I won, my first thought was "I can't believe no one else entered."
The winning poem was published in the paper. I don't think we have the clipping but
my mom kept the original poem.

 Cheshire Herald 1983; 
I won a contest to create a mascot for my elementary school; 
given that it was in a cold New England state, it made perfect sense for me 
to choose (and for them to choose) a toucan; he was retired in the mid-1990s, 
replaced by a bulldog whom I believe is still in office

New Haven Register 6/19/88, 
accompanying an article about festivals

 Cheshire Herald 3/9/89,
referencing a town debate about building a community pool

 Comics Buyer's Guide 1/8/93,
referencing the then-timely "Death of Superman" comic book storyline...
and a nice segue to a book I'd write about a decade later;
payment: $5

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