YEAH!!!!! Book Signing DONE!

Thanks to the Book Exchange of Norfolk!

Well another year of book signings has begun. Not sure when or if this part of writing will ever become comfortable for me. Racks my nerves like a scary movie overtime.

Meet some nice people. Saw my dream pair of running shoes, one of the children in the store had the brightest neon shoes. Next to the shoes with the heels that light up when you walk, they are my new favorite. Wonder my feet are small enough to fit in the largest children’s size; may have to check that out.

Worked a little on the picture book illustrations and between napping sitting upright Anthony practice a little slight of hand.  I enjoyed it. That is one of the perks of being married to a magician —they keep you entertained.


Watching Anthony do some card magic in the sunshine at the Book Exchange in Norfolk, VA
Watching Anthony do some card magic in the sunshine at the Book Exchange in Norfolk, VA


Instead of working on book illustrations at the end of 2015, I worked on a theme illustration for 2016. In the middle of 2015, I chose a meme about determination. It became my focus for the last half of the year. It was motivation and a visual reminder of what my focus was when things got busy.

An idea of creating a new meme of my own making popped in my head around Thanksgiving. I decided to make it simple and focus on one word, possibility. This is what I came up with:


Focus for 2016
Focus for 2016

The Dummy

Do you know what a dummy is?

I admit I didn’t when I started writing children’s books.

A dummy is a mock up of the actual book. For a picture book, that means a version of the book you hope to publish with illustrations and story put together as a tangible sample. I am working on a dummy.

This dummy is one I want to recreate over and over as a sample to give away to children and their parents so they can see what it is I do – my version of a sampler. It is in my head, but I think it will be here on the blog as I put it together.

Imaging what it could be like, have to admit is fun. Trying different media to find the look that matches what is in my head feels more like play than work. One reason I wanted to do this besides as a way to get my name out there in the public eye, is to show kids how to do this. Get them reading and writing.

To be honest, knowing that something I do could inspire and encourage someone else, that makes me happy.

Dream big, work small, stick with it.

The New Year Begins

Starting off 2016 began at the end of 2015, realistically speaking. Getting myself in order and organized for this year before it began became a priority in the last quarter of the year. This post was written in rough form in 2015, before Christmas eve –for example.

Thanks to the influence of my immediate family, I have started to set about refining my habits regarding ‘work’. I just started calling my writing, storytelling and art ‘work’ in 2015. That was a tough change. In a way, it feels like wearing britches that are too big; if I am going to do this, I have to be professional about it.

I noticed that because of my valuation of ‘work’ and where I placed the time needed to spend on writing and illustrations had a direct effect on production and accomplishment of my goals. To be blunt, I didn’t accomplish the goals I had set for 2015, not by a long shot. That was my bad. I did not value what I was doing as important, so I let things get between my goals and the work time needed for the little things that added together would insure accomplishment of my goals.

Like art. Taking a day to just work on illustrations. (Really I need more than one day, but I am starting small.) I have to organize my space as well as my time. What I thought was going to work for me in the beginning hasn’t. Some of my best work early on was done at a desk in the utility room next to the blower unit of my a.c./furnace. The room didn’t matter it was the location of the desk just off the kitchen. After coffee, first thing in the morning, it was easy to settle into the chair and work till lunch.

My completion of goals, when they did get accomplished, were enhanced by being surrounded by the right people. ‘Right people’ are those that motivate you to get things done. Their influence makes you want to get up and do what you need to do. I call them teammates behind their back, because they are. Finding and culling mentors and teammates has been a haphazard lucky break.

Now on to my biggest downfall – the follow through. The repetitive habit of working. Mine has been there but was so unsure of myself it was scattered and ineffective. My best efforts has been a struggle; I won’t be surprised if it continues to be one. The first big hurdle is past me, acknowledgement.

Organization of time and space in the last month of the year is still being tweaked, but already I see potential. From all the writers I have researched, how we do what we do is so unique to who we are, it takes the introspection of our strengths and weaknesses to figure out what will be our own best method – don’t to copy what everyone else says they are doing, or think it should be done.

The best advice yet acquired? Don’t give up.

I haven’t quit.


Later this month . . .


If you are near Norfolk, Virginia, please stop by!

If you would like to have either of us, Anthony or Julie come to an event near you, or your store, please contact us at kolbwebinc at

Snowball book signing at   The Book Exchange                                                                    Saturday, January 30, 2015

116 East Little Creek Road                                                                        12p – 2-m

Norfolk, VA 23505                                                                                     Featuring                                                          The Magic of Anthony Kolb

1:30:2016Book:Magic copy