Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Up with Figs: Killer Squirrel

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.



I’ve long been convinced that, if reincarnation exists, the best living thing to come back as would be a squirrel on a college campus. They just always look like they are having the best time ever, those squirrels, chasing each other around trees and picking up ramen crumbs and not worrying too much about cars and cats. And, it almost goes without saying, pelting undergrads on the noggins with nuts, which is the real draw, when you get right down to it.

Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.



Monday, January 26, 2015

Sabrina: a quick preview

More sneak peeks for the upcoming picture book, Sabrina, available March 2015 from Great Smoky Mountains Association, a nonprofit organization affiliated with Great Smoky Mountains National Park. All of its proceeds go back into the welfare of the national park. Here is their website. You will be able to buy the book via the website or at any of the park's visitor centers, as well as via many online booksellers. I will update once the book is published and available for ordering.

Most of the books published by GSMA are paperbacks because the millions of people passing through the Smokies on vacation don't really want to purchase hardcover books to haul around while they're there. GSMA is considering publishing Sabrina in hardcover as well as softcover, however, because many people feel hardcover children's books are more durable. The hardcover will cost more to produce, so if GSMA decides to do it, the print run will likely be quite small. I'll keep you updated on that, too.

About Sabrina, a baby flying squirrel, from the book's back cover:

When Sabrina falls into a red squirrel nest, she creates quite a fuss. Just who is this critter who has landed in their home? She sort of looks like them, except for her big, googly eyes and her arm flaps. And she always wants to sleep during the day instead of at night, when the red squirrels sleep. 
But it’s a good thing this misfit stays awake at night, as the red squirrels soon discover…












Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Up with Figs: The Winter of His Discontent

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.




The Lothario of Smith Street hates the winter. 

It’s not the ice or the cold or the snow. That the Lothario can handle.

His hate stems from all the fine females who wear big, puffy coats. He can’t admire their fine forms, is what draws his ire. The Lothario can’t tell which chicks to make a move on when, in the big, puffy coats and acres of hats, scarves, and socks, he can’t even tell if they are, indeed, fine females. 

It frustrates the Lothario, who yearns for some quality Spring wooing.

Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.



Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Up with Figs: Skate Park

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.




"And, thus, on that day, Zachary’s little brother Earl was thrust into his true calling. We celebrate Earl, the first human skateboard ramp, and all of the many feats of true stupidity he inspired. Bravo, Earl. Bravo."

Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.




Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Up with Figs: House Elf

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.



New business plan:

Sneak into houses late at night. 
Wash all of their dishes.
Dust all of their baseboards. 
Quietly, mind.
Lay out a freshly pressed outfit for the next day, complete with a travel cup of coffee just the way they like it.
Sneak back out.
Send a bill, asking them to leave, like, $20 in an envelope under the potted begonia. 
If they don’t pay, take their silverware.
Crazy? Or just crazy enough to work?

Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.



Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Up with Figs: The Day after the 12 Days of Christmas

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.





While I appreciate the thought — no, no, really — it’s sweet that you wanted to get me all the things from the song. Really. Very nice. But I might have been happier with another accordion. Or maybe some food for all of these dang drummers drumming. 

At least all the birds have flown away. Well, except for that bite-y one. He seems to want to stick around. And we have plenty of milk now so there’s that. And the trees will be nice once there are pears on them.

I’m not saying that it was a bad gift. No. No! I love that you went to such expense and effort. I love that practicality is not obstacle for you! 

I just think that maybe next year we set some limits.


Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.


Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Up With Figs: All I Don't Want for Christmas

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.


Things I know I don’t want for Christmas so thank you anyway:

Ebola

Newscasters, etc., obsessing about ebola

Chinese from that weird place around the corner. I don’t think it’s actually a restaurant. 

Another accordion. 

Anything processed. 

More lingerie, because, really, at this point, who are we kidding?

Things that breathe and/or require food.

Those smelly candles. You know the ones.

Visits from your Aunt Margie. It’s not even character building anymore. It’s just sad, like Grey Gardens sad.

Other than that, though, the sky is the limit. I mean, you could get me the sky, but I’m not sure where we’d put it.

Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.




Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Up with Figs: For the Birds

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.





Bob. I need you to sit down for a minute. We need to talk. 

No, Bob. Now is exactly the right time. 


They aren’t real, Bob. Not even a little. 


Stuffed, Bob. Not with “love,” like you say every single time I point this out. With industrial fiberfill. 


I’m not “against freedom,” Bob. I’m just worried about where this is going. You need to choose: me or the three penguins.


Well. 


That was unexpected. And quick. I expected more mulling. And no I won’t scrape my own sticker off of your window. I never wanted to be part of this freak show in the first place, Bob.


Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.



Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Up with Figs: The Horror

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.



I haven’t told you my other method for dealing with writer’s block. I give myself a choice—I can either write whatever needs to be written or complete some odious task, like scrubbing the innards of the refrigerator or washing all of the upstairs windows or cleaning around the 9-year old Boy’s bed, including the crack between the frame and the mattress, which is where all of the extra-grody stuff lives. Nearly every single time I’ll just sit down and write. And, even if instead choose the odious task, at least there’s one less odious task on my list. It’s a win no matter what.

Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.




Monday, December 8, 2014

Strawberry Fields



One year, as Dave and I prepared to decorate our Christmas tree, we set our music to play random songs and went about pulling the ornaments out of storage.

When we returned to the tree with the boxes of ornaments, there was Dave the Cat, peering from the dark depths of the tree branches just as John Lennon sang "No one I think is in my tree" from "Strawberry Fields Forever." 

Cats.



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