Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Melvin Beederman: The End?

Yesterday marked the end of a series of books that I had the great pleasure of working on, with Melvin Beederman Superhero #8 hitting the book shelves. A book written by first time author, Greg Trine, about a struggling kid super hero who couldn't leap a building in a single bound, but took him more like six or seven tries. What was supposed to be one book, initially, it was pulled from the infamous "slush pile" (that dark room at all publishing houses with piles of book manuscripts that are stacked high to the ceiling) and was granted an eight book series! That alone should give any aspiring writer hope. I remember getting the call from my editor, she was so excited about the book and was giggling as she explained the rough story line to me. I was immediately drawn to the main character and all of his struggles and soon became a fan devouring each new manuscript like a fan first and then as my illustrating job later. I loved working on this book so much. On top of that, Melvin Beederman took me to cities I'd never seen, when Greg Trine and I went on a book tour arranged by the publisher, and met many new friends because of the book, and for that I am thankful. It had at one time even been optioned to be animated, but never quite made it.

 Melvin Beederman had a good run of eight books, although part of me secretly wished to see what Greg Trine would have written had he known it would be the last, there was/is so much potential in the series, that's for sure! I'm in a bit of a denial about the whole thing, I feel that it may live on in the future, but it's not up to me and for now, it's a bittersweet good bye. If you ever had thought about maybe picking up the book before and maybe passed, now would be the time to give it a chance. It's a treat! A bit biased of a recommendation, but a sincere one. Here's a peek at one of book #8's final scenes of an epic battle inside of a space mall (click image to enlarge):
Melvin Beederman was a blast to work on. Thank you Greg Trine for writing the book with such fun characters with heart. Thank you Reka Simonsen for pairing me up with Greg and for believing in me for the series. Thanks to the designers that worked on the book. Thank you librarians and readers old and young, for giving the book a chance. Thank you Henry Holt & Co. for publishing eight books about a struggling little hero that leaped from the "slush pile" and into homes and schools everywhere!


p.s. for all readers old and new, one last surprise: I had a fun time of hiding a panicking chicken in all eight of the Melvin Beederman books, so if you have the books already, go back and look for the chicken! Some are easier to find than others, but there's one in each book. If you are asking why a chicken, I will quote a wise one that once said "because chickens are funny."

Exhibit A: Panicking chicken

1 comment:

  1. Pwa-ark. Pwa-ark. One chicken in a panic is out of a job. Pwa-ark. Pwa-ark. Your illustrations are a great complement to Greg's words.