Several years ago, I was inspired to write a children’s picture book. Me and everybody else, right? But mine was special because not only did my mom love it, but so did my wife! I know, I know. With critics like that praising my work, how could I possibly fail? I’ll tell you. And this is where you can follow along.
Daddy Tries is picture book with a special target of triathletes. Also, it rhymes. By all accounts, the world wide web suggests that writing a weird rhyming picture book is the most direct route to becoming an unpublished author. I am well on my way! And I am serious about it.
I wrote a full manuscript for a traditional length 32-page book aimed at the humorously adventurous lifestyle of a budding triathlete as seen from the eyes of a child. Then I wrote it again. And then rewrote that. Finally, I was confident enough to share it with strangers at a critique group. Periodically on Sundays in 2012, I met with a collection of aspiring authors of all types at the U-City Public Library. This process was especially helpful in tightening up the meter of my writing.
By this point, I was set to conquer the children’s picture book world. Publishers would be clamoring to sign me to a deal. I sent query letters, cover letters, and manuscripts out into the world with almost no idea that each one had a snowball’s chance in hell of succeeding. A handful of rejection letters trickled in. Some publishing houses just didn’t respond. Other mentioned that they were too busy to read any new work at all. Enthusiasm waned. Disappointment set in.