CG Honors

Miracola_Wrestler     I am pleased as can be to tell you that my husband’s artwork has received another honor. The Society of Digital Artists is highlighting his work as the Society’s Featured Portfolio. Once there, click on the wrestler to see more of his work, or you can check out Jeff’s other work by going directly to his website.

     This is a great honor because CGSociety is the most respected global organization for digital artists and is frequented by the top names and companies in the industry. Being singled out by the CGSociety says a lot because of the high caliber of work seen throughout its community. Jeff’s been honored there before, twice achieving CGChoice Awards.

     If you wonder where he gets his inspiration, it’s all me. I drive him nuts, and his only salvation is through crazy art.

A Thrilling Announcement

Monster Isle     When you venture into something new, it’s usually pretty exciting, especially when you have some success. We here are pretty excited to announce that my husband’s first children’s book has been announced and is available for pre-order. Yeah for him!

     Although he’s been designing and creating art for many years and has already been published in many different publications and media, Jeff’s always had a desire to illustrate children’s books. I’m so happy to see his dream fulfilled. Great job, Hon!

     Here’s a look at Welcome to Monster Isle. If you’re feeling generous and want to get a fun book for a child in your life, please go ahead and pre-order. You’ll get it just in time for Halloween.

Making Changes

Silvia Acevedo Caricature      An understanding friend recently quoted Vincent Van Gogh to me, saying, “What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?”

     After five great years of working at WTMJ, I’ve stepped down. Sunday, March 9th, was my final day, and what a send-off it’s been. Friday, many of my colleagues gathered at Bar Louie to wish me well, and, Sunday, the weekenders had a sneaky little party planned. I should have expected it because they’re uncommonly generous. Many people signed around the superb caricature that station artist Nick created of me, at right, and Shelley Walcott was her usual sweet self, writing about the day:

Goodbye Silvia Acevedo

     Leaving such a group of caring and awesomely talented people was a very difficult decision. At heart, I’m a writer and journalist, and have been immersed in that world for so long, that I find it difficult to say that I wouldn’t ever return to it in one form or another. For now, though, I have a unique opportunity in my life to focus on other things which also mean a great deal to me.

     Thanks, everyone, for everything.

Writers’ Retreat to Feature an Old Friend

The Spiderwick Chronicles     The fall retreat of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators’ Wisconsin Chapter will feature some exciting people, including a very well-known author that I haven’t seen in many years, Holly Black. You will undoubtedly recognize the name as the co-author of the wildly popular fantasy series, The Spiderwick Chronicles, which has just been made into a major motion picture.

     I had the pleasure of getting to know Holly, as well as artist Tony DiTerlizzi, who would illustrate the series, in New York, back in 1998. My hubby was a featured artist, along with Tony, at the Magic: The Gathering Pro Tour there. He and Tony couldn’t pass up the chance to catch up with each other now that they were in the same city, and I tagged along and greatly enjoyed my time with those very talented people and their funny and also talented significant others.

     I’m really looking forward to seeing her again after so many years, and I’m sure everyone at the retreat will benefit from what she has to say about writing for children.

     SCBWI-WI’s Annual Fall Retreat will be held in Racine on October 17 – 19, 2008.

In Memory of Louvenia Johnson

Louvenia Johnson     Ms. Louvenia Johnson looked peaceful today. As well she should, as she heads to her eternal rest. The 96-year-old founder of the Milwaukee Times Weekly Newspaper has blessed countless people, including me. Years ago, I was one of many college-bound students who received money through the scholarship that bears Ms. Johnson’s name, and, this week, I was shocked and humbled to see my name in the advisory announcing her passing. It is perhaps the highest honor ever bestowed me.

     Ms. Johnson was an extraordinary person. She believed in the power of journalism to improve people’s lives. In 1981, as a retiree, she and three others founded the Christian Times, which grew to become the Milwaukee Times. Seven years later, she established, with her Social Security retirement funds, The Louvenia Johnson Journalism Scholarship Fund, which is reported to have awarded more than $350,000 to date.

     I am grateful for the financial help she gave me then and the esteem at which she held me since. I hope someday to make such a difference as she.