For many, many years now it has been my goal to create a children's picture book for my family. Way back when, I thought it might be finished in time for my youngest son to enjoy it. He is 26 now and getting married in the fall; I guess that ship has sailed, hasn't it? But not long after I became a grandmother 8 years ago, I got inspired once again and started the project anew.
And finally, FINALLY, I am done.
So...even though he would do it in a New York minute, I just can't ask my husband to invest too much money in this ABC Book project. My gut is telling me that trying to get it into print is just not the path I'm meant to take with it.
I did, however, stumble upon a photo book a Shutterfly-type company called Mixbook a few years back, and through them I was able to have all of my 8 and 1/2 by 11-inch pages copied beautifully into a soft-covered 8 and 1/2 by 11-inch book. I was quite pleased with the result.
Decided to re-purpose the Finding Grace cover image for the S's--and was happy I could figure
out a way to fit it into a rhyme for this book!
I was kind of tickled when I received it in the mail recently, because it looks like a real book, and the illustrations reproduced remarkably well. BUT (and this is a BIG but) each soft-cover copy is prohibitively expensive: $69.69. (And the hard-cover version is $20 more per copy--yikes!) I mean, at 50 pages it's about twice as long as the average children's picture book, but still...
I was able to find a decent Mixbook coupon online when I ordered mine; but even using that, the price of just one soft-cover copy was over $40 with shipping. I can't imagine that anyone is going to want to pay that kind of price for a children's book!
You are, dear readers, of course more than welcome to use this link to order a Mixbook copy if you so desire. (Maybe you'll be able to find a 75% off coupon?!) However, the main reason I decided to share the link is that it will enable you to "flip" through the pages of the book for free, while you view it on your computer screen. In this new modern age, perhaps that's the way computer-savvy little ones prefer to look at picture books anyway. (I've seen the way toddlers can work iPhones and iPads; it's impressive!)
To make copies for my own little people, I decided to run off two-sided copies of the illustrated pages (using the "best" resolution printer setting) on high-quality resume paper and protect them with plastic sleeves. Then I put all the pages in an inexpensive three-hole presentation binder. I did use card stock for the front cover, for better durability, and enclosed that in a plastic sleeve as well.
The end product actually came out really well (in person, with better lighting and less glare, the pages look almost identical to the Mixbook versions)--and I'm thinking of offering a CD with all of the printable images here at the blog (for $15 perhaps, s & h costs included?), so that if you are interested in having a hard copy, you can run one off using your home printer. If you have any thoughts on the CD idea, leave me a comment. I love hearing from you!