How doth the busy bee
Improve the shining hours
By making honey sweet and good
From all the pretty flowers.
How doth this lazy I,
Improve (?) the shining hours
By drawing things
And painting things
With my nimrodic powers.”
Poem by Wanda Gág
I, too, revel in my nimrodic powers of “drawing things and painting things,” just like Wanda Gág. Yesterday, I named an online store after this poem. It’s called, of course, “Nimrodic Powers,” and it is an on line shop where you can purchase clothing and bags and magnets and what have yous with my famous art printed on it. I’ve been thinking I should “wait until it’s done” to share this shop with you, but then it became apparent that it will never be done. Or, maybe it is done. It’s a thing that I will keep adding drawings to as the mood strikes me, which could mean “I will add more art to this store every day for the rest of my life,” or it could mean, “it is done. I am never adding any more pictures again.”
Shout out to Christina McMullen for introducing me to the concept of a Zazzle Store. Christina writes good books and I follow her on Twitter. She also makes silly drawings. I egg her on. Then, she announced her Zazzle store, and I bought a few things and discovered them to be, actually, high quality and beautiful. So I decided to make my own Zazzle store.
Speaking of Twitter, McMullen is one of the few people with whom I truly interact on that forum. I used to subscribe to the idea that, the more Twitter followers I had, the more books I would sell. That has not proven to be the case. In fact, there was one instance when I shared a quote from Exhaust(ed), and immediately got a book of mine returned to Amazon. (I didn’t know you could return books to Amazon! Don’t return mine, now, please!) So, you could say that I proved that sharing my work on Twitter actually has a negative impact. Now, I’ve got thousands of Twitter followers, most of whom I “follow” back, and I don’t know them. They don’t know me. I think we’re all just out to promote ourselves. Everyone is shouting and no one is listening. It’s just a creepy mess.
So, I’m done with that. I’m deleting my Twitter account in one month. However, I still enjoy interacting with a few key people (Christina McMullen, Alex Bledsoe, Professor Batty, my dad… and a few more) and I do like to follow a few famous people, so I have started a new account. I’m keeping it small. I’m not following back, unless I know you. So, if I know you, or if you want to follow me and you don’t care that I probably won’t follow you back, my new Twitter account is @MyNimrodicPower I will still promote my books and art a little bit, because that’s just what I do, but I’ll try to be a bit more chill about it.
There is a book to promote right now, actually. Postcards from Joshua Tree comes out next Thursday, September 27. Do you remember when I said that if you joined my Patreon, you could tell me what my next book would be about? No? Well, that happened. And Professor Batty joined at the $25 / month level, and told me to write a book called, “Postcards from Joshua Tree,” about my times in Joshua Tree. So, hey! I did! I also enlisted the help of my many minions at Artsy Fartsy Coloring AND Colouring to color in some postcards for me. So, we technically had over twenty people working on this book, plus the idea came from Professor Batty. I think the end result is really beautiful, if I do say so myself. It’s a book of postcard-length vignettes, each one accompanied by a picture of Joshua Tree or the surrounding area, drawn by me and colored by a volunteer colorist from the coloring group. Then, at the end of the story, in the back of the book is all of the drawings, uncolored. So it’s a coloring book, too! (The kindle version does not include the coloring book, because you can’t color your kindle. Sadly.)
The offer is still on. If you join my Patreon at the $25 / month level, you get to tell me what my next book will be. Also, you get two copies of every book, when they come out. (Due to the high cost of printing color art books, I think one copy of Postcards from Joshua Tree will cost $25, so if you join this month, you get a two for one deal.) Also, on the months when I don’t produce a new book, you get a small original work of art in the mail. Also, you get eternal life. “But Shoshanah,” you say, “That’s so sad! I mean, if I had eternal life, everyone I know now would die, and I would continue living, forever!” And that’s why you should have everyone you know and love also join my Patreon at the $25 / month level so that you can all “live forever!”
Love, sin, and time,
He lives at the far edge of town, in a single wide trailer from 1978. He has a “three season porch” which is really a wood stairway that he wrapped plastic insulation around, and called it good. By the front door is a sign that says, “it’s 4:20 somewhere.” (If you try to correct him on this point, because it’s not always twenty after the hour, he’ll give you a blank stare.) You wish he would just get a washing machine, because every time he goes to the laundromat, he has to tell people about how the Clinton’s had those people killed in the ’90’s, and Hillary is in a coven- “She’s an honest to God witch! No shame about it, neither,” and Benghazi. Just, you know, Benghazi. Then he lights up a smoke and gazes into the distance in that weird way he has.
No one knows how he makes his money, or what happened to his cat. But he does have money, because sometimes, when you were a kid, he would just slip you a hundred dollar bill, just like that. And also there’s these women who hang out at the trailer, and drive him around a lot, because he doesn’t have a car. “It’d get me into too much trouble,” he says. So, what to get him for Christmas?
On a lark, you get him this book about going cross-country on the Greyhound– because you know he’s done it, a few times. (He doesn’t believe in flying because they check your ID. And that’s how they get you, you know. The ID.) And also, it’s a short book, and it has pictures. A few weeks later, he’s all over the Facebook talking about this book he got. His friends all have the same reaction:
“I didn’t know you could read!”
“Yeah,” he says, “I don’t normally, but this one’s got pictures!”
Look what just hit the press! I illustrated this book for my dear old friend, Yosha Bourgea. (Yosha is such an old friend that he is a main character in Exhaust(ed): The 99% true story of a bus trip gone wrong. It’s dangerous business, being an old friend of mine.) Amazon is offering Murgatroyd Buttercups half price ($5.49) for the first week! Next Monday, the price will change to $10.98, so buy it now to save. If you need a gift for a child, this is a good bet. It’s fully illustrated, 84 pages, but still small enough to fit into a large sock. I really put my heart into the illustrations, and I’m super proud of the result. Yosha wrote the story, which is silly and wonderful. The main character reminds me quite a bit of one of my all time favorite characters, Pippi Longstocking.
*Wiscconsin and Illinois friends: Buy this book from Amazon this week, bring it with you to the Jangle Soapworks open house on December second, and I will have a special free gift waiting for you. Also, I’ll sign your copy!
It’s like the Love Boat, only sleazier. Our eighteen-year-old heroine (me, Shoshanah, years and years ago) travels across the United States by Greyhound bus, with only her Grace Kelly coat and her Elements of Style book to protect her. Original art work (by me, again) adds to this eccentric tale of travel on the cheap in 1993. Both terrifying and hilarious, this ill-conceived road trip is doomed from the start. It’s funny because it’s 99% true.
Enter the giveaway at Goodreads: