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Contribute to the publication of a beautifully illustrated bedtime story celebrating a parent's love for a child.
Thanks to our backers, MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN is now available in bookstores everywhere!
Thanks to our backers, MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN is now available in bookstores everywhere!
170 backers pledged $11,550 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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My Love for You Is the Sun - A Picture Book

$11,550

170

We Did It!! THANK YOU!

THANK you to everyone for helping us reach our funding goal in record time AND raise enough over goal to provide three FREE school visits! Although I am a writer, words fail me as I try to express my gratitude to you all for making this one dream become reality. I'll rely on the Italian phrase, Grazie Mille. A Thousand Thanks! 

Now that the Kickstarter campaign has ended, many people have asked us how they can support the book and/or be notified once it is published. 

First, you can sign up for the mailing list to receive word when MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN is available for pre-order and purchase. Because official project updates go only to backers, if you did not find out about us in time to back the project, signing up for the mailing list is the best way to stay up to date.

Second, you can visit the official MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN website for sneak previews, book-related activities and events, and ultimately, to purchase the book. If you go to the website before the end of 2013, bear with us as the site is still a work in progress. Stay tuned! :-)

Advance Reviews of My Love for You is the Sun

"MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN is classic, timeless, and yet completely fresh." 

       -- Emma Walton HamiltonNew York Times Bestselling Author  (with her mother Julie Andrews) of the THE VERY FAIRY PRINCESS series and 25+ other books for children

"Beautiful, sweet, and comforting."

      -- Eileen SpinelliChristopher Award-winning author (SOMEBODY LOVES YOU MR. HATCH) and children's poet 

"A soothing and lyrical tribute to the power of parental love."

     -- Linda Ashman, Critically-acclaimed author of more than two dozen picture books, including RAIN! and PEACE, BABY.

From the Author

I got the idea for MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN late one night as I was snuggling my children in bed. Unlike most times when the muse strikes me past midnight, this time I sprang from the bed, went straight to my computer and wrote the first draft of the book.

I grew up on a lake in the woods of Northern Michigan. Being outdoors in nature was a defining part of my childhood, so how better to express my love for my children than with metaphors from the natural world? My Love for You is the Sun, a Tree, the Rain, a River...

What I didn't realize at the time I wrote the book was that, while I did indeed write it for my children, I also wrote it for my father. I attribute my love of nature to his gentle, loving introduction to its beauty and wonders during my childhood. As a result, I think MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN is about more than the love of a parent for a child. It is about the universal, infinite nature of love.

My hope is that this book gives people everywhere a way to express and share their love with one another.

You're a Digital Author. Why Publish My Love for You is the Sun as a Print Book?

It is true I have published two fully interactive storybook apps for children, A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS and A SHIVER OF SHARKS. I love book apps, and I am enthusiastic about the unique opportunities they will bring to the experience of reading for children.

However, it is equally true that I love ALL forms of books, and print form is the one that will serve MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN the best. The book is intended to be read while holding a child on your lap. The story interaction is between the reader and the child. 

Finally, Susan Eaddy's spectacular illustrations do not belong in pixels on a small screen, but need to be showcased across an entire book spread to allow children to marvel at them.

We intend to publish MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN as a hardcover book with the highest quality materials so it may be passed down as a keepsake from generation to generation.

You Have a Publisher, So Why Do You Need Kickstarter?

Little Bahalia is an indie publisher with a laser focus on quality. I know this from experience because they published both of my storybook apps and a print edition of A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS.

Stacey Williams-Ng, the editor and art director, loved the book and wanted to publish it, but her list was full. I proposed the idea of crowdfunding the initial production and printing costs, and the rest, as they say, is history. But we need your help! If we don't reach our goal, MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN will not be published.

If you want more information on the rationale behind the decision to fund via Kickstarter, take a look this short video I made for my publishing colleagues a couple of weeks before I launched this campaign.

How Will the Money Be Used?

  • $5,000 is needed for the art direction, design, project management and production of the book from Little Bahalia
  • $3,000 will cover the cost of the first-run printing 
  • $1,000 will cover the cost of shipping and handling post-printing
  • $1,000 for Kickstarter and payment processing fees and the production and fulfillment of campaign rewards

Stretch Goals

If a book is published and nobody reads it, is it really a book?

Believe it or not, publishing a book is just the first step toward getting a book out into the world. The biggest challenge facing any author is getting his/her book discovered in a very crowded marketplace. If MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN is published, Little Bahalia, Susan Eaddy and I will all contribute as much time and money as we can to promoting and distributing the book. 

Hiring public relations and book marketing experts can vastly improve a book's chances of success, however, the starting cost for this type of assistance averages about $2,000 per month. Therefore, if we receive funding above our $10,000 goal, we will apply it to PR and marketing.

Another critical way to reach readers is through schools. However, budgets have been slashed at schools all across the nation, and often the first thing to go is funding for author visits. Therefore, I (Julie Hedlund) pledge to visit one school free of charge for every $500 we raise above our goal. I will try to conduct as many of them as I can in the more critically underfunded schools and will share my experience via project updates.

IN ADDITION, we have some fantastic rewards that will be "unlocked" if we meet our stretch goals!

Stretch Goal #1-- $11,000. Every backer at the $25 level and above will get a package of custom stickers with art from the book (possibly even puffy ones if we can make it happen)!

Stretch Goal #2 -- $13,000. Every backer at the $25 level and above get a reusable tote bag featuring an illustration from the book.

Stretch Goal #3 -- $15,000. We will commission a famous children's poet to write a poem just for backers of the book. Backers at ALL levels will receive this award.

ADDITIONAL STRETCH GOALS WILL BE UNLOCKED IF/AS WE CROSS EACH OF THE GOALS ABOVE!

Risks and challenges

As with any publishing project, there is the risk of delays in the creation, production and/or printing of the book. Any delays in the production of the book should not create delays in the production of most of the other rewards, however, because we will have the completed illustrations available to us.

Any rewards that would be impacted by a book production delay (such as an author visit) will simply be postponed and rescheduled once the book becomes available. Backers will be kept apprised of our progress and timeline throughout the publication process.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    ACCESS TO BEHIND-THE-SCENES PROJECT UPDATES, which will include illustrations as they are completed.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    All of the above, plus ACCESS to the "Story Behind the Story" VIDEO where author Julie Hedlund provides more detail on the inspiration for My Love for You is the Sun and the quest to bring it into the world. Backers at the $25 level will also be ACKNOWLEDGED ON THE AUTHOR'S WEBSITE (including a link to your website, if applicable), and receive a BOOK-RELATED FUN PACK for children (coloring pages, activity sheets), delivered electronically.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    All of the above, plus A SIGNED HARDCOVER COPY OF THE BOOK. The author will sign the book to the recipient of your choice. Backers at the $50 level will also receive a beautifully laminated 18 x 24" LIMITED EDITION POSTER of one of the book's illustrations, and a SPECIALLY-DESIGNED BOOKMARK with art from the book.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    All of the above, plus a SET OF 20 NOTECARDS specially designed with art from the book.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    All of the above, plus backers at the $100 level will be ACKNOWLEDGED IN THE PRINTED BOOK as contributors. Backers at the this level will also receive an ADDITIONAL COPY OF THE BOOK, SIGNED AND SHIPPED AS A DONATION TO THE SCHOOL OR PUBLIC LIBRARY OF YOUR CHOICE. A bookplate will be included in the book naming you as the donor.

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    All of the above, plus a 12 MONTH 2015 WALL CALENDAR featuring illustrations from the book.

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    All of the above, plus a SECOND 18 x 24" LIMITED EDITION POSTER of one of the book's illustrations featuring a different illustration from the book. Backers at the $200+ level will also be eligible to schedule a 30-minute SKYPE/GOOGLE+ VISIT with EITHER the author OR the illustrator with their choice of classroom, school, writing group, etc.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    All of the above, plus an EXCLUSIVE VIDEO OF THE AUTHOR READING THE BOOK directly to the child or children of your choice (a classroom, your children, grandchildren, etc.). The video will be sent via a private link on YouTube AND an mp4 or mov file for your direct download. The video can also include a personal message from you or something you would like the author to say to your child(ren). Plus, backers at the $250+ levels will receive their SIGNED COPIES OF THE BOOK TWO WEEKS PRIOR TO THE OFFICIAL RELEASE DATE.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    All of the above, plus a LIVE, IN-PERSON VISIT of up to three hours from EITHER THE AUTHOR (within a 200-mile radius of Boulder, CO) OR THE ILLUSTRATOR (within a 200-mile radius of Nashville, TN). Backers at this level will also receive a signed copy of Julie Hedlund's book A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS and a code to download the A SHIVER OF SHARKS app for free (must have an iPad for the app to work).

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    All of the above, plus TWO CUSTOM-MADE 10 x 20 GALLERY-WRAPPED CANVAS PRINTS, printed with archival ink. YOU CHOOSE which of the two illustrations you want for the prints. Backers at the $1000+ levels will also receive three additional verses cut from the original manuscript of from My Love for You is the Sun. The verses will be sent on individual cards with hand-scripted calligraphy, signed on the opposite side by the author. You choose whether you would like the cards framed or not.

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    All of the above, plus author Julie Hedlund will FLY YOU to Denver for a unique day of FUN in Boulder! I'll pick you up at the airport the day before, hand deliver all of your rewards, and drop you off at the Sheraton hotel in Westminster, CO. I will pick you up in the morning, treat you to breakfast, then give you a 6-hour custom tour of Boulder, including lunch. YOU get to decide what we do. Shop on the quaint Pearl Street Mall? Tour of UC Boulder? Go for a hike? A scenic drive in the mountains (or even to Rocky Mountain National Park)? We will spend one hour on the phone prior to your arrival to plan the itinerary. I will be at your complete disposal for the day. At the end of the tour, I will drop you off at EITHER the hotel or the Denver airport. RESTRICTIONS -- PLEASE READ BEFORE SELECTING THIS REWARD: Applicable only to people traveling from major urban airports in the Continental United States that are serviced by Frontier Airlines, Southwest Airlines or other major commercial airline. One night at the hotel is provided. If you stay additional nights, those will be at your expense, including the cost and arrangement of transportation back to the airport. Breakfast and lunch will be provided on the day of the tour. All other meals and incidental expenses will be your responsibility.

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    All of the above, plus illustrator Susan Eaddy will FLY YOU to Nashville for a unique day of FUN in the Music City! She'll pick you up at the airport the day before, hand deliver all of your rewards, and drop you off at either her own private guest cottage, located 3 miles from downtown Nashville, or at the Marriott, Vanderbilt. She will pick you up in the morning, treat you to breakfast, then give you a 6-hour custom tour of Nashville, including lunch. YOU get to decide what we do. Breakfast at the world famous Loveless Cafe? Tour the downtown area including the Ryman auditorium, home of the original Grand Ole Opry, and Hatch Show Print? A visit to the Country Music Hall of Fame? A scenic drive through the gardens at Cheekwood? An evening at the Bluebird Cafe, or the Grand Ole Opry, or dancing at Robert's Western Wear? And of course, a personal tour of her studio and all of the original illustrations from My Love for You is the Sun. She will spend one hour on the phone prior to your arrival to plan the itinerary. She will be at your complete disposal for the day. At the end of the tour, she will drop you off at EITHER the hotel (or her guest house if that's where you choose to stay) OR the Nashville airport. RESTRICTIONS -- PLEASE READ BEFORE SELECTING THIS REWARD: Applicable only to people traveling from major urban airports in the Continental United States that are serviced by Frontier Airlines, Southwest Airlines or other major commercial airline. One night at the hotel is provided (OR two nights if you elect to stay in the guest cottage). If you stay additional nights, those will be at your expense, including the cost and arrangement of transportation back to the airport. Breakfast and lunch will be provided on the day of the tour. All other meals and incidental expenses will be your responsibility.

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Funding period

- (30 days)