A few posts back, a posted here about a certain local Dallas Zoo-based tortoise they gave me a special insight to life and mental wellness. Since that fateful post, a lot has been happening behind the scenes… all becuase of that hard-shelled friend.
I have completed a manuscript for Rock Me Right, now on its way to becoming a fully illustrated children’s book, in which eight different animals help young children, and their parents, to find a common language to understand their emotions and how to cope with what they are feeling. I could not be more pleased with this project or with the community that rose up around me, championed this cause, and helped to make this a success.
Instead of going through a traditional publishing journey, I decided this book needed to be in the hands of children as soon as possible. With all that has happened in schools of late, I don’t want to waste one more minute while more children and teens are hurt by their peers. So, I took to Facebook & Twitter and began sharing my dream about this book: I believe that children do not have well-tuned coping skills to deal with their emotional health and this leads to issues such as bullying, suicidal tendencies, self-mutilation (cutting, self-harm), depression, repressed anger, rage and violence. This book is a tool to help respond to the needs of children everywhere at the beginning of their lives. It is okay to be sad, to want to be alone, to need people and also to express joy when circumstances are dark. Children, and adults are given permission in Rock Me Right, to feel what they feel, to identify those feelings and to know what is appropriate in sharing them. God designed his animal kingdom creatures with amazing coping skills and in the book, we learn what those are from each animal.
I set a budget of $9,600 to completely fund the launch of this book and the outreach tour to get it in the hands of as many teachers, parents, librarians and children as possible. To date over $7000 is raised to publish this book and put it in the hands of kids everywhere! Along that journey, I have found the most amazing illustrator and book formatter, Kate Cook and Brooke Burnett. We, three women, are working tirelessly behind the scenes to make this book a reality by the end of the summer.
Here is a sneak peek at the character illustrations for the book. If you’d like to know more about our totally-blow-your-mind-she’s-so-good illustrator Kate Cook, you can follow her at https://www.facebook.com/V8Kate/.
Our formatting queen is the and only amazing Brooke Burnett and you can see more of her designs and fab work at https://www.facebook.com/lbrookeburnett.
If you would like to know more about Rock Me Right make sure to send an email to us or sign up for our email distribution. We are looking for groups to partner with for book readings, book sales and special events for kids and parents. The book is due out early this fall.
Thank you for your support and remember, you too can “Rock Me Right!”