July 7, 2010 the story of “Ten Little Gator Eggs” was created. I was following a summer prompt for the month of July. We were prompted to write something. It didn’t matter what it was as long as you were writing.
The story title was “Momma Alligator.” It told of her laying her eggs
and singing to her offspring. She then went hunting for dinner. As soon
as she finished eating she went back to the nest to guard the eggs. She
swam back and forth as she excitedly waited for their hatching. It
finishes with the birth, of up to the possibility of 10 hatchlings.
One year later, after several revisions and recommendations from an
online children’s writer’s group, I presented the book to Rubin Pfeffer,
literary agent East/West Literary Agency, at the SCBWI, Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, summer conference.
He said the story was good, but thought I could jazz it up. He gave
me three months to resend the manuscript. I was almost ready to give up
as the deadline loomed.
Then I discovered “The Piggy in the Puddle.” I loved the non-sense words and added a few to my story. Here is Mr. Pfeffer’s email response to the revisions.
“I believe you’ve strengthened the story and I’m heartened to see this. Kudos.
While I can’t at this time take on more clients, I think you have a
good example of picture book writing to show a prospective agent.”
I submitted “Ten Little Gator Eggs”
2011, 2012 and early 2013. I received some rejections and many
unanswered queries, I decided to follow the recommendations of many and
I asked five illustrators to send me samples. Three responded and Greg Laws was chosen as my illustrator. To this day, I’m not sorry for choosing him. He gave life to “Ten Little Gator Eggs.”
“Ten Little Gator Eggs”
became an educational, counting up to and down from 10, book during my
many revisions. I love to teach and this book teaches the life cycle of
the American Alligator and as one mom said about her son, “He’s learning to count
backwards. I didn’t even think about that when I bought the book.”
She even showed me a video of him reading the book. He asks for it every night and is doing a really good job.
Sales have been up and down with some selling online, some to Atala Montessouri, and some hand sales.
Monday, December 16 I read the book to several classes at Atala. The
children loved the book. A couple were glued to every word.
I spoke to the upper elementary children about writing and publishing. They had a lot of good questions.
I love using local businesses and I had our local printer make up
some cards to hand out. I handed out over 50 at a recent Rib Fest. I
made some sales from those.
I sold several books to the school and have them in the local museum, the Historic Homestead Town Hall Museum, downtown Homestead and I keep copies in my car.
This came in handy Saturday when I ran into a friend while shopping. He purchased one right then and there.
The cover is Greg Laws’ sample. I knew it would become the cover. Order your copy here or contact me at email@example.com for a signed copy.
Like and follow “Ten Little Gator Eggs” on FaceBook. We’re working on translations in Spanish, Portuguese, French and German. Hoping to have a hardcover Spring 2014.
And this is the story of “Ten Little Gator Eggs.” See you again, soon and watch out for the alligators.
Have fun writing, revising, publishing and marketing.