Rickshaw Girl and Jamie Hogan

I stopped by Charlesbridge unannnounced this afternoon to drop off some alpanas (traditional Bengali designs, usually chalked on the floor) that my mother had sketched to help Jamie Hogan, the artist chosen to work on Rickshaw Girl (middle grade novel coming in 2007). Susan Sherman, art director, and Judy O' Malley, editor, were glad to see me because Jamie had just sent some drawings that they wanted to show me. Sap that I am, I got choked up flipping through the illustrated pages of the book-to-be and watching Naima, my main character, come to life. I've never written anything that's been illustrated (except by cover art), and I felt like an architect entering a house after it's been tastefully decorated by a top-notch interior designer: "Wow! I built the place, but I never dreamed it was going to turn out this beautiful!"