What Cinderella Smith didnít look like


When you sign a contract with a publisher, you sign over the right to choose the artist. At the time it didn’t feel scary. I was so excited my book was being published that I didn’t think about much else. As the manuscript was polished up though, I did start to worry. Though I didn’t know what Cinderella looked like exactly, I knew what she didn’t look like.

My editor must have understood how I felt because she let me have a glimpse inside the process of finding the right artist. She sent me to the various websites, but none of the artwork I saw felt right. Then one morning an email arrived with five black and white sketches. They were magical. For the first time ever I was looking at Cinderella and her world. Her expressions, her clothing, her shoes – perfecto! Who was this brilliant artist? It was Diane Goode. Caldecott Honor Winner Diane Goode! I had to start pinching myself all over again.

I wasn’t sure if it was appropriate or not, but I sent Diane an email introducing myself and telling her how thrilled I was that she’d agreed to illustrate Cinderella Smith. She emailed back and we now have a wonderful email friendship. She is warm and generous and tremendously helpful. I couldn’t have navigated the next step, promoting the book, without her. 

The first lesson in Promotion 101, a website…