About the book
Written and illustrated by Jeremy Holmes with co-author Justin Gregg, Fancy Goat is a hilarious children's picture book featuring beautiful hand-painted illustrations. The hapless protagonist is a run-of-the-mill goat who is constantly being transformed into a fashion icon by a little girl who thinks he's waaaaay fancier than he actually is. She gives him a cravat, top hat, pearls, tutu - whatever she thinks the goat "wants" in order to live the extravagant lifestyle that seems to be driving her crazy.
Despite her protests, it's obvious (to the reader) that the goat is not fancy at all. He's just a blank canvas for her imagination.
Why do kids need Fancy Goat?
The little girl in Fancy Goat is able to dress up her goat in whatever outfit she can imagine. In her world, there is not pink and blue - just fanciness and fun. The adults in her life allow her to express her creative side without telling her that "goats don't wear pearls". They encourage her to be who she wants to be - a message that resonates with both children and adults.
Being free to explore your creative side - whether it's fashion, art, or music - is vital to children's intellectual development. As an advocate for children's mental health, Fancy Goat author Jeremy Holmes has spent his career helping kids unlock their creativity, allowing them to find their voice in a world where the creative arts are becoming less and less valued. Fancy Goat is a story that reaffirms the value of letting kids be kids when it comes to creative expression, without imposing our adult biases and prejudices. More about this subject in the below video:
How this Kickstarter campaign will help
Fancy Goat will be published by Outside the Lines Press (OTL), a family owned indie press based out of the picturesque town of Antigonish, Nova Scotia. It will be be OTL's first hardcover publication, and we're planning to promote it far and wide. As it turns out, hardcover books are crazy expensive to produce, which is why we're turning to Kickstarter to help raise funds to make more hardcover versions of the book available. The initial print run of Fancy Goat is just 1,000 copies. That makes it a limited edition first printing. We'll be donating close to 100 books from our first printing to libraries across the province of Nova Scotia, so there are really only 900 up for grabs during this campaign and after the book is launched.
Each dollar raised during this campaign will help OTL secure a second print run of Fancy Goat. With your help, we can print enough hardcover copies of Fancy Goat to unleash this bow-tie-wearing quadraped upon the world!
The illustrations for Fancy Goat come from the pen of Jeremy Holmes. His drawings were then shuffled across the kitchen table to artist Ranke de Vries, who produced stunning watercolors that transformed his creations into works of art. Below is Ranke's favorite painting from the book. Check it out, fancy goat can do ballet!
Jeremy's favorite painting is fancy goat flying a plane:
And here's Justin's favorite - fancy goat has his own masseuse:
Who are Jeremy and Justin?
Jeremy is the founder of the children's songwriting group The Little Ditties. The Little Ditties’ debut album won an East Coast Music Award (ECMA) for Children’s Recording of the Year in 2014. More about the Little Ditties in the below video:
You can listen to the Little Ditties award winning album at this link. And check out the Little Ditties YouTube channel - it's filled with awesome songs for kids, like this one:
Since winning an ECMA, Jeremy has been working with schools and health care organizations in Nova Scotia to provide music therapy and songwriting workshops to children. He visits schools to engage students in collective songwriting, as well as hosts music writing workshops in his home studio. In addition to writing and recording songs for kids, Jeremy is a published author, having released a pun-filled coloring book about reindeer (Pun Pun Rudolph) just last year.
Justin Gregg is Jeremy's co-conspirator, and owner of Outside the Lines Press. He has written books about science (mostly dolphin science) for kids (22 Fantastical Facts about Dolphins) and adults (Are Dolphins Really Smart?). This is his first book about goats.
Both Jeremy and Justin are hard at work on a new Little Ditties album. We'll be adding new rewards to our Fancy Goat Kickstarter campaign featuring CDs and other merchandise from The Little Ditties, so watch for those as the campagin unfolds.
Fancy Goat is in the final stages of pre-publication, with a tentative publication date of September 1st. Hardcover versions of the book as described below will be sent to our backers after they arrive in late August/early September.
Risks and challenges
The biggest risk/challenge we'll need to overcome is timing the publication of Fancy Goat to coincide with the arrival of the hardcover versions of the book. Our publication date is set for September 1st, which should give our printer plenty of time to print and send copies of the book to us. We could always hit a snag along the way which could delay the release of the book. However, any delay would be minimal (no more than a week or two), so we're darn confident that Fancy Goat will see its public release in late August/early September.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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