Because the above link to my monthly Bartography Express newsletter will be good only for another few weeks, I’m going to paste the details here:
I get to announce some great news this morning, and you get to hear it before just about anyone else.
Five years ago, my friend and critique partner Don Tate was one of the first people to read my manuscript for The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch, the picture book biography of a young man who in ten years went from teenaged field slave to U.S. congressman. We sat at my kitchen table and talked over an early draft, discussing how to get it into good enough shape to catch an editor’s eye. That project was eventually bought by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, and today I’m delighted to share the name of the guy who’s going to illustrate it.
That’s right: Don Tate.
In the past few years, Don has illustrated biographies of astronaut Ron McNair, baseball pioneer Effa Manley, and the musical team of Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn. Another Don-illustrated book in the works is written by the great Eve Bunting. And this spring brings the publication of It Jes’ Happened: When Bill Traylor Started to Draw, Don’s first book as an author (and which we also discussed at my table!). It’s already picked up a starred review from Kirkus and additional glowing words from Publishers Weekly.
I’m beyond happy to be collaborating with Don on this book — on our book. I think we’re all in for a treat.