Monday, June 29, 2015

Letters with Book Illustrations, Custom Designed with the Picture Book of Your Choice

Well, I've finally started my own Etsy shop. It's kind of "the thing" for stay-at-home moms. I wasn't planning on following this trend, but then I decorated a letter to hang in my daughter's nursery. I thought, "That was fun," and "I could sell these." Thus the Etsy shop was born.

I decorate 7" wooden block letters, mostly for kids and babies. They're custom designed and I try to make every idea a reality, but I specialize in children's books illustrations. You pick out the letters and the picture book you want (it can be any book in the world, as long as they sell it on Amazon), and I design them for $15 a letter.

So far I've made CHASE with Green Eggs and Ham, ELLA with There's a Woket in My Pocket, MAXWELL with The Story of Barbar, and I just got an order for LIAM with pictures of sports balls.

Right now I'm hosting a GIVEAWAY for THREE FREE LETTERS to one person who posts about my store on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest. If you feel like spreading the word for me, I'd be eternally grateful! Just post this link:

Interested? Visit my shop to order some for yourself. They also make great gifts!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Money Does Not Define Me

I always wanted to open a bookstore someday. We're going to wait until our family is more financially stable and I don't have babies in the house anymore, so it's a long ways down the road. Someday, though.

A friend of mine cautioned me against opening a bookstore. He said it was a "bad idea." I'm not going to lie, I was pretty irritated. It wasn't because the statement was an attack on my faith in the enduring power of paper books and the stores that sell them. It wasn't because it was an insult to my intelligence. After all, I am smart enough to know bookstores aren't goldmines.

I was mad because he thought bad ideas aren't worth pursuing.

I should take a step back here, since not everyone agrees on what makes an idea "bad." He meant it wouldn't make any money. As a stay-at-home-mom and an aspiring novelist, I don't make any money. Does that make me a "bad idea"?

Everything I've ever done that mattered had no financial value. College. My baby. Volunteering at church. Painting. Dancing. Knitting. Roller derby. My writers' group and our events. All my failed manuscripts that took me many years and many tears to write.

One the other side of the coin, all my working experience was a dismal and utter waste of time. I never had a job that was meaningful. Most of my employment history is me sitting at a desk pretending to be busy. Rotting from the inside out.

My husband keeps encouraging me to use my talents and intellect on money-making endeavors. He's an entrepreneur, so I can't blame him. I keep telling him nothing that makes money interests me. I want to be a lactation consultant, a writer, a bookstore owner... nothing financially smart.

You know what? I'm happy. I'm not just okay with my life, I love my life.

Sure, I hope VOODOO QUEEN will rock the bestsellers lists and make me millions, but if everyone read it an no one paid for it, I'd still be happy. Okay, I'd actually be irate that no one was paying for my book, but I'd keep writing. The point is, you have to live your life the way you are meant to live it, not the way people say you should live it.

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