Ana & George was my first book project. For a short time, it was published but I stopped selling it because it was too much of a work in progress. The story began with a destined-to-be queen bee. Bellisia wanted to travel the world, and engage with all her worker bees. She wanted to fly with the butterflies and visit all the flowers. Somehow Bellisia turned into a baker bee named Ana.
And slowly all these characters emerged. Each one with a spirit that refuses societal norms. It’s not about being different. It’s a want to be yourself. I kept going back and forth with ideas. I would sit for hours and write. Then throw it away and start over. I loved imagining the characters, letting my mind wander, and writing. I got to be part of the adventure. Painting is my love and my adventure. Every project I work on is an adventure.
I now realize that I let this story go for good reasons. What do I know about writing and illustrating a chapter book? Absolutely nothing. That’s exactly why I had to write it. If it weren’t for this story I wouldn’t have had the courage to write Different Is Beautiful. I have many more poems and stories to write.
I just read Ana & George. It’s been years since I’ve read this story. I thought I deleted it. I’m glad I still have it? Maybe I can turn the book themes and characters into a whimsical thought journal book? What a cool idea! I should do some creative writing while the idea is still fresh in my mind.