As I’ve read to my children since their birth, I really wanted to write my own bedtime story. I researched the principles of what makes an ideal bedtime story, and what struck me most was that I needed to include trigger words like ‘sleep’ and ‘tired’ and ‘close eyes’. So, not only are parents developing a bedtime routine with their child, but they
are also reading subliminal cues to their child to help them drift off peacefully.
How I developed the story
I knew there was going to be a baby or young child in the story but I wanted them to have a friend along for the ride. My Mr 3 likes cars and tools and my Miss 6 likes mermaids and unicorns. They both adore animals. Bears, rabbits and cats are cute, but I wanted something special for this book. As an Australian author I decided to find a native animal to join baby in the story.
The Bilby is endangered in Queensland and vulnerable nationally. Not only is the bilby extremely cute, but it also needs our help.
So with baby and bilby ready for their bedtime journey, I incorporated the things my children love and the story grew. I had two beta readers and two editors work with the story before it was finalised and ready to be illustrated.
How I found my illustrator
As an author/illustrator I had full intentions of illustrating the story myself. But when I was looking for someone to make a bilby toy for me I stumbled into Aurore McLeod of Friends in the Leaves. I introducted myself to Aurore through madeit.com.au where she had her handmade toys and illustrated cards listed for sale.
Quite simply, I fell in love with her illustration style. I knew it would be perfect for Bedtime Bilby. I made a proposal and offered a contract which Aurore gladly accepted. She revealed that she had always wanted to illustrate a picture book. It seemed like our paths were meant to cross.
How I printed the book
Inscope Media , an Australian company working with Ligare printers, had been fabulous to work with on my first book, The Green Goggles, so I went with them again for Bedtime Bilby. The hardback book is beautiful and it does Aurore’s lovely illustrations justice.
Save The Bilby Fund
To support the bilby I make a $1 donation from every book sold either through my website or through library distributors. There are many other ways we can help our bibly, so please visit Save The Bilby Fund and you can donate directly, sponsor a bilby or buy other merchandise.