Thursday, May 1, 2014

Donovan is published

Donovan has been writing books for quite some time now. It began with "Ghosts Haunt the House." This contained some autobiographical references such as when one of the kids falls out of his bunk bed and the parents won't believe his claims that a ghost did it, and some fictional incidents like when the aforementioned ghost scares the mom to death. It was riveting, as I am sure you can imagine. I have kept several of these books for posterity.

After the ghost series (it carried over to other adventures) and the Pumpkin Brothers (took us through several holidays), Donovan settled on "Joe and Zack," stories about two friends not unlike the much beloved (and legitimate) series, "Frog and Toad." Last year I was formatting years worth of blog posts on so I could print them, and when they finally arrived, Donovan could not believe how amazing this was.

"You wrote stuff, and now it's a BOOK?!" He was overly impressed. "Can I print a book?!"

Now this is where my husband, the creative, is a much better parent than I am. Having just completed MONTHS of formatting work (granted, I had hundreds of pages while Donovan had, like, 20), I began to say, "Your book is fine the way it is," but Joel interrupted with a very confident, "Absolutely!"

So it became his problem project. And, granted, it did take a while, mostly because Donovan wanted to work on it when Joel was, you know, actually working. But finally, they had it completed. And finally, it arrived.

Donovan opened his package with such care and excitement. He breathed in and out deeply, as if this moment, THIS MOMENT, was the pinnacle of his life so far. 

"I can't wait to read this," he murmured, as if he didn't have every page memorized.

I have to admit, it does look pretty good.

They later discovered a few typos because the editor had washed her hands of the project. That editor has since repented and will be fully engaged in future projects.

As I looked through the book and watched Donovan look through the book, my heart began to swell with love for him and for a husband who not only encourages creativity, but facilitates it. And then we got to the back cover.

The "About the Author" just about killed me, never mind that is one of my favorite Donovan pictures of all time. I love that they included this part. Granted, Donovan does always put in an "About the Author" (in the first Ghosts book, it's spelled, "About the Othor"), but I just thought this was awesome. And he couldn't wait to take it to school the next day. He had told his teacher he had published a book, and she had asked if he'd bring it in and share it.

The next day, he returned from school with his victory tales: how he had showed kids at school and they couldn't believe it; how they proclaimed that he was FAMOUS; how the teacher had him do a dramatic read-aloud in class; how the kids had asked if they could each read it; how he began working on an "AR Quiz" (a quiz kids can take after they read a book for points and they are expected to get a certain number of points each semester) because his teacher said he could.

Something so seemingly small has turned into a huge achievement for him. And if you come over, he will be delighted to show you this book. He will also bring out his other prototypes and answer any questions you may have about his career or characters.

Maybe one day he'll be a famous author and do book signings and everything. I hope he always uses his second grade picture in the "About the Author" section.


laura said...

AAAHHHHHH! I love this so much. Will there be a Kindle version?

PaloAltoCougar said...

This is great. I'm looking forward to a personal reading by the author next month.

Wanda said...

Oh man, Laura and your dad took all of my words. Maybe that is why I'm not an "othor". I'm sure Donovan is just beaming! What a great kid, husband, and idea!

Dawn Thurston said...

What awesome parenting! Talk about encouragement. Who knows where this will lead... :-)

Morris Thurston said...

I'm going on record to predict that the name "Donovan Hill" will become as well-known someday as Roald Dahl or J. K. Rowling or John Grisham.

Well done!

Now he needs a marketing manager. If all the kids in his class want to read the book they should order it from Blurb (at an appropriate mark-up, of course).

Oprah Book Club?