Tag Archives: control

Christmas and Chinese New Year

15 Dec

What, you might ask, do Christmas and Chinese New Year have do do with a children’s picture book that is not about either? Well, let’s tackle them in sequence: Christmas means some extra time for parents. Gifts are an issue. And not only the ones you intend to give to your own kids. A lot of relatives aks you for suggestions and they have kids, too. Anway, it simply is not the time for a full time father/part time writer to lock himself in all morning and every evening doing the final touches on the book or the audio book version – especially when the kids get sick. Why all this frentic work after it took more than six years to get this far?

Because our printer informed us that they could ship the printed goods to us quiet soon – if we submit all our stuff before December 25th. And why this? Because there is a lot to do for a Chinese printer before Chinese New Year, which is January 28th next year if I am notmistaken.

We have no publication date yet, but we postpone it anyway. We decided to take some of the pressure off and get “Jibonka” finished in our own time rather than hurry it. Thus February 2011 is off, April is more like it. So what? We have control over almost everything concerning the book – why should the publication date be an exception?

 

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Total Control

14 Dec

To have control over what you’re doing sounds nice. As a team consisting of a draughtsman and a writer, we have complete control over “Jibonka”: we did the text, we did the artwork, we chose the type font (we even discussed to create our own for a while) we designed the look of every single page.

This, as I understand goes far beyond the degree of control one usually has when writing a children’s picture book and getting it published. Usually a writer submits a text, the publisher sends it to an illustrator, a designer does the look and so on.

Well, we finally have the opportunity to go through the process on our own. Not that we would have declined offers,but… Anyway, as I wrote earlier, we’ve now got the budget to go through with it – having a lot of control along the way. Alas, control does not mean you control little helpers who “do” all those things that need to be done.

We wanted to have an audio book version of “Jibonka”, so we got ourselves a decent microphone, a digital audio interface, a recording softwareand monitors, met for a week and recorded the German and English versions. We did all sorts of funny voices for our cast of cake loving monsters and once we left the well behaved, inhibited selves next to the coffee maker, it was great fun.

For the last 10 days I have been doing the job of a sound engineer, not that I am really qualified to do this. But cleaning the recordings up, cutting away everything that is just sonic junk, then mixing it in a way that makes sense, adding sounds, burning a CD to then notice all the mistakes and doing it all over again – a lot of control.

Meanwhile Jörg is blowing the pages up – well, enlarging them. This proved to be more complcated than expected, because he could not just scale them up. The final format will be 38 cm in height and 30,1 cm in width. This does not entirely correspond with A4, so there is some extra control in it.

Today, Jörg ordered the ISBN numbers, which made a few inter Adewani telephone conferences necessary. The business of comparing printer’s quotes and organizing transportation of the books from China to Germany – all a lot of control.

I guess it will feel quite nice to transfer the printing data to our printer and send the CD for replication. Because when this will be done, it will be out of our hands for a while. Unless somebody pays for a ticket to Hong Kong (I would then pay the train ride to Shenzhen myself) and we transform into printers – I would not rule it out.