Sally and Seemore and the Meaning of Mushki (Maybe Part I)










This is a bit of an experiment.  “Sally and Seemore and the Meaning of Mushki” is the manuscript of a children’s (middle grade) novel that I wrote some years ago and never published.  It is a true novel–i.e. with lots of words-and not a lot of pictures.  But lately I’ve been thinking that it might make sense to vastly simplify it by cutting a lot of words and adding in a lot of pictures.  So, I thought today that I might just start trying to write it out in this pictogram/graphic novel sort of format.

Honestly, I don’t know if I can keep it up, as it is a novel with at least 150 pages or so in the old version with all the words, and I have no art training, but I have hated to let the book languish,  So,  I guess I’ll see if I can periodically keep it up.  (A few frames at a time!) 

If the Toads are very lenient, I may link this to With Real Toads open link night. 

PS–Yes, I know the story, but am making the current text up as I go along, in pencil, so please forgive erasures, and photographed (rather than scanned) drawings, and please feel free to make suggestions!   (Right now, I’m not photographing these in very good light, but hopefully I’ll get more confident as I go along!) 

PPS – as always, all rights reserved in pictures and text. 

PPPS-since it is getting near Christmas, I will mention that I have written two other (sort of) children’s books--1 Mississippi, a counting book for lovers of watercolors and pachyderms, and Nose Dive, a young adult (and rather funny) novel for people who are not quite happy with how they look but love to sing anyway. 

Nose Dive pic

(From 1 Mississippi)

(From 1 Mississippi)





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20 Comments on “Sally and Seemore and the Meaning of Mushki (Maybe Part I)”

  1. I think this could work out … at least in the beginning… I think the first sentiment of learning the difference between my world, and the whole world is important. That is a very important stage in growing up, I do not know about the rest of the novel, but I think your pictures would work great… at least for me.

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      Thanks, Bjorn. I have been thinking about this little book for a while–of just changing the whole thing, so this is a very tentative step–probably as seen by the not very good photos and faint writing! If I feel like I can do it, I need to get a better way of scanning pics and put the print in differently, but this is a bit like a mock up. Since I’m just writing as I go, for example, just using faint pencil, agh! But I’ll see. It is a very sweet little novel, I think, but maybe too long for its subject matter the way it is now. Thanks as always for kind visits and comments. k.

      On Mon, Dec 8, 2014 at 3:12 AM, ManicDDaily wrote:


  2. What a brave idea. It’s like writing in public and I think it’s a great goal. Your drawings are charming and the story, although I don’t know the meaning of mushki, starts well. I like the dog’s name as the pre-cursor to seeing more in the book.

  3. Helen Says:

    I am burning the candle at both ends now ~~ so glad I took time for this delightful post!

  4. I think this is delightful for the young and the young at heart. I hope you can make it work (and your illustrations are perfect).

  5. I think your picture to text ideas here would be very appealing to clever children, in an Alice in Wonderland kind of way. I say keep sketching it out. Maybe you can narrow down those 150 pp into a simpler story and really have something.

  6. Brendan Says:

    I say follow it! It’s a road and who knows what you’ll find. Much occurs now in the graphic novel space – who knows, maybe there’s room for graphic poems, too. Flipboards. Sounds fun.

  7. Steve King Says:

    Maybe it’s a children’s story but it’s also a dog lover’s story. So charming as is, and related in a wonderfully innocent voice. Please keep going on this!
    Steve K.

  8. I think this would make a FANTASTIC children’s book, and that kids would relate to it so well. Yay! I think you’re onto something!

  9. Adorable! Anxiously awaiting the next installment so I can finally learn what “Mushka” is. (I’m starting to think it must mean happiness though, as Sally’s world seems quite delightful!) I haven’t been an actual kid for many, many years Miss Manic, but as a virtual kid allow me to say this is going to be a chart buster! Yes, yes, yes! Finish it…..

  10. zongrik Says:

    i think Seamore is VERY cute!!!

    focused implementation

  11. It is a very interesting and important topic for a children’s book. It teaches a great lesson, and it’s fun to read.

  12. Margaret Says:

    Break it down into a series with different life lessons in each. This reminds me of my daughter had her sweet dog (now passed away) and the love and times they shared. Looking forward to more

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      Thanks. There is a long developed story, with life lessons, but not broken down that way–which would probably be better, thanks. k .

      • Margaret Says:

        I was just thinking if you are going for a children’s book this would be the approach to take.

      • ManicDdaily Says:

        Agreed. I wrote and re-wrote the children’s novel and a sequel (many times) some years ago, so need to decide how much time I want to spend and how much I would want to restructure. That’s part of my indecision here. They were not so bad as they were ! But I feel like their language was perhaps a little too old for the story. (I am not bristling at your suggestion at all. Just trying to decide whether I want to spend more time and effort in this world.)

        On Wed, Dec 10, 2014 at 1:40 PM, ManicDDaily wrote:


  13. hedgewitch Says:

    I think it’s a fine idea. k. Pictures often can say things in a more direct and simplified way, while having their own nuances and moods that cut through a lot of conventions and artificial constructions, very prevalent in how we approach children–plus it’s a very vibrant and creative field to get into, I think–bound to be fun to do,and much more fun to edit.(!) (Sorry to be so late to the party–been out of commission the last few days with my back. Better now)

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      So sorry that you are not feeling well. I did a 55 that was a real poem–prior to this, I only mention because feeling so sad about Galen–a new form he invented really with the 55. k.

  14. brian miller Says:

    i think it would be a cute idea to work it as a picture book…and you dont have to lose all the words…i love shaun tans picture books and they are targeted more at the middle school age….

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