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