cover art

I told you CHARLES, Liza, Kirsten, Tim, and the gang were making things happen. Today’s email brings two wonderful images from World Fantasy Award winning artist John Picacio that will be the covers of Fantasy: The Very Best of 2005 and Science Fiction: The Very Best of 2005 respectively. I’ve loved John’s work for ages, he has a fantastic new book out right now, and he did that astounding cover for MonkeyBrain’s Kim Newman collection. I feel very lucky indeed and, while the cover designs still need to be done, I think the book’s will look terrific.

Little kids want to be co-conspirators

Little kids, at least my girls, love to be co-conspirators. They love to be part of a secret, especially a good one. Here’s an example. Yesterday morning I got an email from Marianne telling me that Sophie (age four and a half) had been very difficult all morning, not getting dressed, having tantrums, all that kind of thing. She was so difficult that Marianne banned her from doing some of her favorite things for the morning, and they both were still a bit cross when I got home.

Just before dinner Sophie wanted to watch one of her new favorite movies, The Lady and the Tramp. She told me she wanted to watch it, but she wasn’t allowed to. I asked her why, and she told me – quite seriously – that she’d not been very good. She’d gotten out of bed and had a tantrum, got dressed and had a tantrum, had breakfast and had a tantrum, and then gotten in the car and had a tantrum – four tantrums! (her emphasis). I asked her why? She said she didn’t know. We then had quite a serious conversation about whether tantrums made mummy happy or cross (cross), whether mummy did nice things for Sophie when she was cross (no), and whether Sophie liked it when mummy did nice things for her (yes). I then suggested wouldn’t it be a good idea if she did something nice, and then maybe mummy might do something nice for her. Sophie thought this was a very good idea. I suggested the ‘Getting Ready’ Present. We would secretly go and pick out Sophie’s clothes for the morning, lay them out, and then in the morning Sophie could get up, have breakfast, and then secretly get herself all dressed and ready to go without telling mum. It would be a present. Sophie loved this idea! It was a secret, it was a conspiracy, and it was doing something nice for mum. And I just got word she went through with it like clockwork. She’s apparently pleased as punch with herself, which she should be, and being delightful. We’ll have to see if we can make it work tomorrow morning, though .