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Our award-winning series of racially-diverse children's books celebrating LGBT2Q kids and families is back with a Celebrations theme!
Our award-winning series of racially-diverse children's books celebrating LGBT2Q kids and families is back with a Celebrations theme!
Our award-winning series of racially-diverse children's books celebrating LGBT2Q kids and families is back with a Celebrations theme!
750 backers pledged $70,305 to help bring this project to life.

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Look, look, an update!

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Dearest, darlingest Flamingos,

Happy Pride! I am aware that not all municipalities celebrated Pride this past weekend, but in the spirit of Stonewall I want to wish you all a happy Pride. I hope that your sunburns are already starting to heal and your voices are already starting to return.

In The Mosque Garden, written by El-Farouk Khaki and Troy Jackson, illustrated by Katie Commodore
In The Mosque Garden, written by El-Farouk Khaki and Troy Jackson, illustrated by Katie Commodore

We have been very busy here at Flamingo Global Headquarters through the spring, working on six beautiful new books for you. While I’m very sorry that they weren’t ready when we imagined they would be, the finished items are going to be worth the wait. Interspersed I’m including some character sketches and even a few colored pages to whet your appetites for the finished products, which I am VERY pleased to say, will be shipping out during the first week of September. Artists are painting and drawing furiously in anticipation and we have printing press time booked.

a page from The Last Place You Look, by j wallace skelton, illustrated by Melisse Watson
a page from The Last Place You Look, by j wallace skelton, illustrated by Melisse Watson

I want to take this opportunity to thank you all so much for your patience with this process. Without going into too much detail, I just want to say that sometimes the reality of queer and trans people’s lives - and therefore their capacity to complete work - can be particularly susceptible to disruption. We have been sorry indeed to make you wait, but glad and proud to be able to support our creators.

character sketches from 47,000 Beads by Angel & Koja Adeyoha, illustrated by Holly McGillis
character sketches from 47,000 Beads by Angel & Koja Adeyoha, illustrated by Holly McGillis

In the beginning of July you will all receive an email from BackerKit, which will allow you to fill in your address for shipping. Two notes about these BackerKit emails:

You may use them to purchase any add-ons you may desire, like French-language or Spanish-language books (!), extra sets or previous year's sets.

Bell's Knock-Knock Birthday, written and illustrated by Sam Orchard and George Parker
Bell's Knock-Knock Birthday, written and illustrated by Sam Orchard and George Parker

You MUST fill these out in order to receive any physical rewards that may be due to you. We have no access to the address you would have used to authorize your payment method. We’ve learned that people frequently imagine they only need to fill out the address collection email if their address has changed. In fact, everybody everybody everybody needs to fill it out in order to be shipped their books. 

Rachel's Christmas Boat, written and illustrated by Sophie Labelle
Rachel's Christmas Boat, written and illustrated by Sophie Labelle

Thank you for taking this fabulous flamingo ride with us. We are all looking forward to showing off the finished goods very soon.

love,

S. Bear Bergman

Flamingo in Chief

Presenting....our 2017 season!

  • THE LAST PLACE YOU LOOK. Written by j wallace skelton, illustrated by Melisse Watson 
  • 47,000 BEADS. Written by Angel and Koja Adeyoha, illustrated by Holly McGillis.
  • SUPER POWER BABY SHOWER. Written by Tobi Hill-Meyer and Fay Onyx, illustrated by Janine Carrington. 
  • BELL’S KNOCK-KNOCK BIRTHDAY. Written and illustrated by Sam Orchard and George Parker. 
  • IN THE MOSQUE GARDEN*. Written by El-Farouk Khaki and Troy Jackson, illustrated by Katie Commodore.
  • RACHEL’S CHRISTMAS BOAT. Written and illustrated by Sophie Labelle.

*tentative title

character sketch from Super Power Baby Shower, by Tobi Hill-Meyer and Fay Onyx, illustrated by Janine Carrington
character sketch from Super Power Baby Shower, by Tobi Hill-Meyer and Fay Onyx, illustrated by Janine Carrington

 

Lo! an update!

21 likes

Dearest, darlingest Flamingos,

Things are VERY EXCITING here at Flamingo Rampant headquarters. All stories are in the 2nd draft stage or later, illustrators are sketching and coloring - fourteen authors and illustrators in three countries and five time zones are hard at work making your beautiful new books. They feature dragons and snow cats and service dogs and wolves, gay dads and lesbian grandmas and trans parents and two-spirit kids and chosen families, a luxurious mosque's garden and a tiny city apartment crammed with people. We have authors and illustrators working in teams and pairs, putting their heads (and their great big queer hearts) together to make new stories come to life. For the first time ever, EVERY book has at least one trans or non-binary person working on it, and we have eight contributors working on their very first children's book project. AND, despite not reaching our stretch goal, we are going to go ahead and produce one book in French and one book in Spanish (you'll be able to add to your order when the time comes, if you'd like). Translators are diligently making new poems and considering gender-nonspecific endings in Romance languages as we type. It's an exciting time!

It's also a bit slow going. One of our projects lost its illustrator - for a great reason (and we are SO excited about the person who just agreed to pick up that project), but it set us back at least six weeks in the process since all the books go to be printed at the same time (with their friends. It's nicer that way). We also took extra time with some of the authors, who had imagined beautiful stories but needed some patience as they learned about children's-book making. One of our values here at Flamingo Rampant is in supporting new talent and giving people their first gig in a system that tends to reward MFAs and owning your own expensive design software more than talent and vision, so we feel great about all of that....except for the delays. At the moment, this project is probably 8-10 weeks behind schedule, and it may even take longer. I'm very sorry for that, and yet we all feel sure that the end products will be worth the extra wait.

In the next two weeks, once everyone's a little further along, we'll be sending you some images and pages to peek in at, so you can see how your books are coming along. Thanks so much for your patience and your faith in us as we make you these lovely, and loving, new books.

love and flamingos,

S. Bear Bergman

last day

23 likes

 Dearest friends,

For those who don't know me well, you should know that I have always subscribed to the theory of Cheri Huber, as taught to me by the incomparable Kate Bornstein - that the way we do anything is the way we do everything. I am political in intensely personal ways, an activist constantly in my feelings and a storyteller who is always trying to kick harder at the world's injustices. It's out of that love and commitment that I write you today.

Above is a photo of my grandmother, Rita Fergenson Bergman z"l - a teacher and tireless advocate for children and literacy who taught thousands of children to read including me, who bought untold dollars worth of books with her own money for her classroom, who patiently untangled the mysteries of language for so many children who grew up without a book in their homes (and in many cases without an adult who could spare the time from survival work to read to them). She's the one who believed I could read even though I was so little, who instilled and nurtured my lifelong love of reading, who read to me loved me through books my whole life. She died yesterday at 97 years old, peacefully in her sleep, loved to the last. 

She was an estimable woman, smart and tough and always most vigorously on my side. In her is the genesis of so many of my projects - including this most tender one. In a way it seems fitting that it comes to a close at the same time she did, and I am glad and grateful to be contributing to children's imaginations in her name, and now in her memory. 

Thanks so much for being with us in this project, whether past, present, or future. She was always quite delighted that I was writing books for children. Thanks for helping us carry on.

love and flamingos, 

Bear

your fabulous FR gift certificate!

4 likes

Are you planning to give Flamingo Rampant books set as a holiday gift? Here's our adorable holiday gift card by illustrator Katie Diamond, ready to download, print and wrap. Give it with crayons, so you can colour it together and look forward to wonderful stories ahead.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/w7kh37ziegdzpjs/FlamingoRampant_Card.pdf?dl=1

All the warmest wintertime wishes from all of us to you!

Love and flamingos, Bear

WE DID IT!

21 likes

Dearest, darlingest backers:

We did it!

With a week yet to go, we have raised the money to make six completely delightful children's books that will offer great sweetness to untold children and families. You're the bestest backers a Bear could possibly imagine! THANK YOU.

For the last week, we're focusing on our stretch goal - language access. With so many requests for Spanish books in the US and French books in Canada, we're hoping to make one of each! As of this writing, we're just $14,000 away from being able to make and print those books. I am hopeful and excited that we'll be able to offer other-language options this time, especially to schools.

So! Please don't stop telling people about the project, posting and sharing and letting people know what we're up to. Just to remind you, if we meet the stretch goal EVERYONE who ordered a book set gets one of the other-language books, and the people who ordered the complete library get BOTH. Help us send you more books! Help us offer great new work about gender to huge additional swaths of the world! Let's be awesome(r) together.

Thanks so much for your support, encouragement, sharing and sharing and sharing. You're the actual best.

love and flamingos,

Bear