Thursday, November 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving from Tails of Whimsy!

From all of us at Tails of Whimsy to all of you and your sweet critters: Happy Thanksgiving!
We give thanks for kind-hearted people like you who rescue, foster, adopt, and love our beloved pets. Cheers to all you do for animals in need!
Illustrations by artist Daryl Slaton

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

It Takes a Village!

Tails of Whimsy has been blessed with friends and helpers as we move towards animation and publishing. We would like to thank a very talented bunch of professionals for their expert advice and hands-on work over the past, very busy six months. You are helping us move forward quickly with vision and a more assured footing than we could have believed possible.

Rob Pulleyn: A lunch with Rob awhile back gave me a bird’s eye view into the pitfalls of publishing Daryl’s storybooks and why getting traction in the field is like a slow ice melt. He inspired me and gave us the insight to move forward PLUS contacts right here in Asheville that might be willing to offer hands-on skills. Rob, everyone I met with mentioned how much he or she misses you and Lark Books. Thanks for sharing your knowledge and contacts with Daryl and me.

Joe Rhatigan: Former Children’s Book Editor at Lark, Joe is itching to get back into publishing full time. He continues to write, edit and package books of his own and/or others with a long list of credits to his name. Joe shares our passion for children’s stories and has worked with us on another round of edits for Scooter and Boots to the Rescue and The Mighty Machines of MackieMcKeens. He helped us prepare for our first showing at Book Expo America this year and to make (and meet) important contacts at in the industry. Most of all, he served as our “tour guide” as we ventured along aisle after aisle of writers, editors, publishers, printers, and booksellers at BEA. The new challenges of digital, print on demand, independent publishing and more provide new options for Tails of Whimsy to bring our books to parents, teachers and kids everywhere. We love Joe’s passion and unique, creative vision. And we love working with you. More at

Beth Sweet: More than the endearing name implies, Beth is a social media whiz with energy, vision and the organizational skills to get our stories out with special zing and on time! Beth inherited work on our Scooter and Boots Facebook page, with its fan base of 10,000+, when her friend and our former go-to Amanda Carestio of JB Media left on maternity leave and moved to Colorado. At Lark Books, Beth handled social media and marketing for their vast array of publishing pursuits. With Tails of Whimsy, Beth is helping us grow our social media presence using all of our character and storybook assets.  Though we continue to build Scooter and Boots on Face Book and Twitter, you will be seeing more about them as well as Mackie McKeens, The Book Mytes and Wundernauts in our blog posts, our upcoming E-News, and forthcoming retail sites for books and products. Beth, we love how you have acquired the “voices” of our characters. Keep on posting!!! 

Dawn Cusick: Inevitably, the magic of the trade show wears off and it’s time to buckle down to basics. Dawn, another Lark “graduate,” has helped us set a path to publishing, avoiding unnecessary steps that waste time and money. Dawn publishes amazing science books for kids through her independent publishing company, EarlyLight.  She has shed new light on Mackie McKeens as an editor and publisher and has encouraged us to take the extra step of adding supplemental educational pages to our book. This provides special value for teachers, librarians, homeschooling parents and others. Wisely, she has suggested that we minimize costs and maximize exposure as we expand our horizons. Thank you, Dawn, our special friend and advisor. You are an amazing teacher. Learn more at DawnCusick/LinkedIn.

Vicki Whiting: Following up on Dawn’s editorial suggestions for supplemental content, I immediately contacted the brilliant Vicki Whiting at KidScoop News to identify a clever and experienced curriculum writer for The Mighty Machines of Mackie McKeens. Bummer: She was leaving the office for a 10-day family trip. Miraculously, Vicki offered to do it herself while on vacation! Right on time, I received the most amazing projects for kids based on STEM core curriculum: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Vicki Whiting is president, editor and founder of Kid Scoop News, a monthly newspaper for children and KidScoop, a weekly newspaper feature geared to children ages 7 to 12, which appears in over 300 newspapers with a combined circulation of more than 7.5 million. If you teach children, home school your kids or embrace creative learning activities, you will love this resource.  And Vicki, we love you, your energy and vision for education.

Yes, we have so much to be grateful for at Tails of Whimsy. Thanks to our team and all our friends!