Merry Holidays, everyone! I am having a bout of insomnia and a roaring headache so now seems as good a time as any to stop avoiding this blog and instead, avoid drawing for a bit. You’ll have to excuse me if the writing today is a little off. I know it’s a been a while since I’ve posted. Every so often I would check erinstead.com to see if a new post somehow magically appeared. It did not.

Our Amos McGee has been working awfully hard these days and I do hope he took a little time off this holiday season. If you saw the previous post, the book was chosen as one of the New York Times Best Illustrated Books of 2010. Our publisher generously flew Phil and myself back to the city (we had just been there a few weeks before to turn in a book) and we attended a party.

I am by nature a very shy person. Very shy. It takes me about three years of knowing someone to make a friend. I think my parents did a pretty good job at teaching me how to politely get through situations like parties without completely losing my cool. But a party with a name tag and a framed prize that I have to walk up and accept….this is a nervous situation for me. Which is not so say I wasn’t excited and blown away by the whole thing. If anything, that excitement made it worse.

So there I am. I am the person standing up there with my head down looking at the ground to make sure my knees didn’t buckle and that I am, indeed, still standing. Everyone else seemed pretty cool and collected up there.

A note on who I’m standing up there with–
Be sure to check out the books on the list. The professionals in that picture (most are illustrators and some are the editors accepting for the illustrators) are all exceptional. It’s difficult for me to not write about how crazy I felt standing next to those people, but Phil has been trying to teach me how to accept a compliment graciously without skipping straight to self-deprecation. So that’s what I’m trying to do here. But be sure to stop by your local store and check them out. Two of my favorites of the year are on that list…but I’m not telling which ones.

erin stead and philip stead

I met a lot of very nice book people that night. I think I got through it without being too shaky or saying anything too wildly idiotic. But I love book people. It was nice to have an excuse to talk shop. Oh, and librarians for goodness sake! Where would I be without librarians?

An interesting note and a nod to a future post–

Upon a little research, it appears as though the NYT panel all had some ties to the fair state of Michigan in their past. In my next post, I’m going to talk a little about that and this state, I think.

I hope everyone had a nice December. Happy Holidays! I love snow.

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