Apologies to all those of you who were following our blog and must have felt positively abandoned over the last two months. Things at Flying Corgi have been busy: Charlotte Rolfe is at work on another pair of Back-to-Back Books, and Leslie Koreski and I are developing her Audrey’s Garden, which will be our next publication. In addition, we are looking at illustrators for the Russell’s Muscles series.
In addition, though, we have all been leading lives crowded with activity and there are real stories to tell. Over the past few months, my father has been working on a memoir of his life. His is a life that has been and continues, in his eighty-seventh year, to be well and fully lived. His story spans the Great Depression, a World War and several smaller conflicts, television, space travel, and the information age. His book promises to be a fountain of laughter and wisdom, and it also promises to tell an important story about Americans born in the early part of the 20th century who had such vital roles in the formation of the country we know today. It’s a story that will be lost if we don’t go out and seek out these people and find out what they have to tell us.
Each of us has a story to tell, too. We think we lead ordinary lives, and yet our experiences and decisions set the tone and pace for everything that follows us. Our Flying Corgi authors tell stories about children and young adults and the issues that inform their growth and development, about adults and their relationships with each other and with children, and about the things that all these people share. Whether the stories are fictional or true, they help to tell us who we are, where we’ve been, and where we’re bound.
I found that I lost two months of blogging in the press of everyday life, but time flies, and I don’t intend to let that happen again. Inspired by Charlotte Rolfe, Leslie Koreski, my father, and other wonderful writers, I’ve learned the importance of telling the stories of the ordinary and extraordinary things that make up our lives. I hope you’ll be inspired too: write down your days, your thoughts, your experiences. Tempus fugit! Tell your story!
Happy Valentine's Day to all!
Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us to all of you!
And just in case you needed to know, we at Flying Corgi are also fans of cats! Actually, we’re fans of old-fashioned valentines, sweet surprises, warm, fuzzy pets, and love in general. Hope you share your holiday with someone you love!
At Flying Corgi, we have a special relationship with the work of Charles Dickens. Many of his characters grew from childhood to adulthood in his serialized novels: David Copperfield, Pip, and Little Dorrit, to name a few. In all his novels, he celebrated the lessons and the richness of life, and fashioned a social consciousness for his readers to learn from and act upon. His writing anticipated the centuries that followed him with its visual qualities, and made it a natural for the many cinematic renditions of it that we can enjoy today, but there are few writers whose books are better suited to long winter evenings and to reading aloud. In our Back-to-Back Books series, our characters progress from childhood to adulthood, and in our upcoming books for tweens, teens, and children and their adult relations, caregivers, and friends, we hope to raise social consciousness. In all of our efforts, we strive to bring generations together over the pages of a good book, just as Dickens did. Charles Dickens gave us a high standard, and we remember his writing on this day as an inspiration. (Now for a cozy re-read of Great Expectations in anticipation of the new PBS film…)
Flying Corgi has just celebrated its first anniversary! It was in January of 2011 that we decided to incorporate and form a company. It’s been an exciting time since then, filled with work, learning, and partnership. We celebrated our anniversary with champagne and chocolate, following the clink of our glasses with congratulations for what we achieved this past year and then yet another business meeting (switching to tea and cake!). We made plans for this year, and they are exciting. If you’ve had an anniversary lately, we congratulate you and hope that you’ll have lots of plans for 2012 too. And we hope that whatever you plan, you’re planning, as we are, to do something you love.
The pot’s simmering! I have just started on two manuscripts, one for Back-to-Back Books, (When Foxes Gather, by Charlotte Rolfe) and the other, a new book called Audrey’s Garden (see earlier posts) by Leslie Koreski. They’re now in development for publication later this year. Ms. Rolfe is at work on the companion piece to Foxes, called Present for a Princess. 2012 is starting out to be a lot of fun for us and, hopefully, will be fun for our readers, too!
Editing at this stage is a particularly satisfying job. Our authors are already very talented writers, but helping them develop a plot, polish a character, and sometimes even make major changes is a great, hands-on job. It’s rewarding to assist an author in refining a vision and bringing it to life on the page and to guide a book to publication; it’s a little like directing a play and bringing it to production. Together we nurture our own professional relationship while we nurture a book. There’s a lot of brainstorming and spontaneous creativity; we learn from each other, play off each others’ ideas, and usually wind up with a whole host of new ideas for future books!
Must get back to the manuscripts, but I’ll check in regularly with thoughts and progress.
It’s a new year, and time to make a fresh start. Do you have resolutions? Achievable resolutions? Why not make one of them reading and sharing books and stories with friends and family of all generations?
My reflections this year have led me to two resolutions, which I hope are achievable in 2012. I’d like to try and achieve real, sustainable mental and physical health: I’m not talking about being in Iron-Man shape, just to be as healthy as it is possible to sustain on a daily basis, so I can consistently feel great and enjoy a high level of energy. Second, I’d like to do rewarding work and make it successful. Flying Corgi is certainly a rewarding place to work, so I’m on the road already!
I know all of us here at Flying Corgi are wishing all of you the best and happiest of new years. Be sure and share with us your resolutions, and watch for new books and materials in 2012.
Happy holidays to all of you from all of us here at Flying Corgi Media!
This morning I cut some holly from our bushes to decorate the house, and was reminded, as I am every year, of the first winter we moved into our home and planted that holly. So many holiday traditions, repeated each year as traditions are, call to mind memories of events and celebrations past, of people who have moved in and out of our lives, of light in the darkness of winter. Like our holly bushes, the traditions are evergreen, and return to us every year as old friends.
So it is with books. When the holiday season becomes rushed, when the desperadoes are storming the malls looking for those last-minute gifts, when the candles are lighted but the relatives are late (or there are so many relatives and friends that you forgot to light the candles!), a few minutes in the pages of a good book will calm things right down. Flying Corgi’s Madeleine Needles started a tradition with her family years ago of reading aloud to each other as a family. (More about that in an upcoming post.) There is nothing like a book to center you, to make you feel as if you have a friend, and to allow you a few moments to breathe. If you share that book with a friend or family member, it’s certain that you’ll feel warm and comforted. Don’t reach for the headache remedies– reach for a book!
Be sure to try our Back-to-Back Books this year. Books to share in pairs: what could be a better way to escape the busy-ness of everyday life? And have you some holiday book recommendations? Put them in the comment section of our blog and share them with our readers.
Don’t miss Flying Corgi Media‘s Event at the Java Room, 14 Littleton Road, Chelmsford this weekend! Meet our cover model for Thérèse’s Adventure, enjoy food and drink from the Java Room’s delicious selections, and chat with the Flying Corgi staff. Thérèse’s Adventure and La Comtesse will be available for purchase (perfect for holiday gift giving!) and we’ll be talking about upcoming cover shoots for our new Back-to-Back Books set. Time? 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. Date? Sunday, December 11. Be there for fabulous food, fun and friends.
Hope you’re all enjoying leftovers from your Thanksgiving holiday. Our “leftovers” this week include:
Reflections: Flying Corgi has been a journey for us three partners, and continues to be a source of rewarding work, because we are committed to our mission of promoting the safe exchange and expression of ideas and the joy and promise of books, videos and experiences between generations. Something to be thankful for!
Renewal: The holiday with our families has refreshed us and given us the chance to think about our core values. Three and four generations gathered to celebrate in our homes this year, and our families will welcome two tiny new members in the upcoming months. Something to celebrate! Sometimes, building a business can be an overwhelming project that proceeds at a breakneck pace. Holidays and R&R give us a chance to refocus and re-energize.
Ruminations: We have some exciting projects in development for the new year, and this blog will keep you in touch with them, as well as your editor’s thoughts about their subjects. Look for ideas and material on the world-changing events of the Second World War and how they affected those who lived through it, as well as what they mean for us today (in concert with our upcoming Back-to-Back Book set, Present for a Princess and When Foxes Gather). Also, I’ll be ruminating about the issue and effects of mistreatment in the form of bullying, in the worlds of human and cyber communication, in preparation for our new book, Audrey’s Garden. What do these events and issues mean for us today? Some important things to think about!