Sunday, August 07, 2011

My Old Friend Technology

So, now that "Alphey Loves Letters" is a reality, I find myself looking to the future at last. I'm happy to say, there are now more options opening up than ever before. What an exciting time for illustrators and authors who aren't afraid to expand their brains in order to keep up with technology!

There are some who would argue with me regarding my tech skills (or lack there of), but I know my limitations.

Yes, I built my own website, while others were paying someone else to build theirs.

So what, I had a blog before many of my colleagues understood what a blog was for.

Okay, I "tweeted" while other's sent me e-mails asking, "What the heck is a Twitter?"

These were not great accomplishments, but I felt they were necessary if I was to keep up with the world at large.

So it's no great surprise that I now find myself, (an aging, not so tech-savvy picture book illustrator) embarking on an exciting journey into the production of loop animated, interactive e-book applications. That's right, you read it correctly. I'm taking the plunge. But this time, it's not just for survival.

I'm sure you've all heard it by now, those doom and gloom predictions about the end of the publishing world.

I'm not so sure I'm buying into all of it. But like it or not, things are changing.

Among the illustrators my age, I'm not seeing a lot of movement out there. It's like everyone is hanging on and holding their breath. It's "business as usual", despite the fact that publishers are over-wrought with enough picture book manuscripts to carry them through for several years to come, mid-grades continue to be on the rise, and small publishing companies are dropping like flies in a smokehouse!

I could wait, like so many others seem to be doing. I could hold out, continuing to submit samples to publishers with the hope that I might get that elusive "traditional" illustration assignment. I could turn to illustrating for low-paying self-publishing authors again, but . . .

 I think the time is right to grab the wave!  

Like I said, it's not about survival, it's about getting in as the wave swells, and riding it to the top.

Over the next few months, I'll be throwing caution to the wind, and going where many of my colleagues refuse to go, . . . into the world of Apple i-phone and i-pad applications. I'll do my best to keep you posted, as I create my first picture book application. It promises to be quite a ride, and if I'm lucky - it'll all go well and I'll get more, better-paying work from the skills acquired along the way!

Oh yes, I'll sneak in a few traditional submissions as I go. Old habits and old dreams die hard.

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