What a fantastic way to start the new year and to kick off our challenge!  We not only had the honor of Tara Lazar kicking this off, but we now have our very own, official participant badge!!  Here it is – both a large version and a small version.  The small one should be perfect for placing on the sidebar of your blogs.  So I now ask all participants with blogs to place the badge on their blogs with a link embedded back to this post.

Our fabulous artist is the amazing Linda Silvestri who donated her time and considerable talent to the cause.  Every time she posts a sketch to her blog, I have a happier day.  Her work is so charming, cheerful and often funny (and punny)!

And oh how I love this badge!  Especially the papers flying off the top of the border.  I also love that the little boy’s shoe is untied.  Such a cute touch.  It’s those little details that I love about Linda’s work.

Here’s how I “met” Linda.  A few months ago, I got serious about the idea of self-publishing one of my picture books.  I went quite far down the road and began looking for an illustrator.  I found Linda from another blog, looked through her portfolio and fell in love.  We exchanged a few emails, talked a couple of times on the phone and I loved her even more.  I knew we would make a great team.

Those of you who are published authors, or who are lucky enough to be illustrators yourselves, know the feeling of seeing your characters and your stories come to life.  As a pre-published author, I hadn’t experienced that particular thrill.  When I got Linda’s email with her sketches of my main characters, I burst into tears – not kidding!  She captured them perfectly and exactly as I had always imagined them.

I ended up deciding against self-publishing that book for a whole host of reasons that I won’t go into here.  It was the right decision for the book at this time, but I was so disappointed that I wouldn’t get to see Linda’s full vision for the story.  I decided I would contact her first if any other opportunities came up.

Alas, once I decided to launch the 12 x 12 challenge, I knew we’d need a badge of honor.  I asked Linda, and she didn’t even hesitate.  She is also one of our challenge members.  So please give it up for Linda, and be sure to visit her website and her blog.

THANK YOU Linda for this whimsical, beautiful badge!  We will all display it with pride.

Categories: 12 x 12 in 2012, Children's Books, Picture Books, Publishing, Self Publishing, Writing · Tags: , , , , , , , ,



  1. How exciting! Such a delightful badge. Well done, Linda, and thank you, Julie. I will post it as soon as I get my new blog up and running.

  2. Holy cow! I can’t believe Linda Silvestri did the badge! I’ve been a lurker on her blog for yonks — absolutely delightful illustration. My brother is a graphic designer/illustrator, and he’s the one who sent me her way a while back to see her Illustration Friday work; we’re both great admirers. So excited she’s part of 12×12! Thanks for this adorable badge, Linda! Putting it up right now!

  3. Talent, and generosity! Thank you, LInda. I’m attaching it ASAP!

  4. I love it! Already on my blog. Thanks Linda!

  5. Linda, this is a cool badge. I’m having trouble putting badges on my blog at the moment as it send the blog into darkness, so I am working on this!

  6. It’s a great badge. About to put it on my blog!

  7. Wonderful badge! Going right up on my blog!!! 🙂

  8. Great design! I will put it on my blog today!

  9. Lori Grusin Degman

    I LOVE it!!

  10. I love it! I’ll go sew it on my blog sleeve as soon as I thread my digital needle.

  11. Thank you so much Julie! First for putting this great challenge together and second for all your amazingly kind words about my work. I hope we have more chances to collaborate in 2012. We’d make a great team!

    Also, thanks everyone for the sweet compliments on the badge. It was so much fun creating it! Show it in good health and creativity!

    Now let’s all get out there and get all picture book up in this year!

  12. Beautiful Badge, have put it up on my blog and the colouring fits in my new look. Thanks linda and Julie.

  13. Thank you , Linda. I love your work.

  14. I love this badge!
    Are these cute little patchwork designs our personal “member” badges?
    Just want to be sure that I officially signed in because I love hanging out here and going for the a year of writing challenge.
    Thanks to you Julie and thanks all.

  15. I agree, the badge is perfect. Love it! Great work Linda.

  16. I’m not one of the 12X12 challenges but I will be watching and in the cheering section. *Yay* for the badge! It’s great!

    Good luck all writers!

  17. This is absolutely the perfect badge for all of us! Displaying it on my blog with pleasure. My badge of honor. Thank you, Linda. *smiling*

  18. Thanks Julie,great image, it is up on my blog now!

  19. Cool! Going to put it on my blog now 😉

  20. Love Linda’s badge. Put it on my blog yesterday.

  21. Good luck Julie–it sounds great, love the badge!

  22. Great job on the badge. I’m putting it on my blog! Thanks 🙂

  23. love the badge. adorable!

  24. I have been a fan of Linda’s work for a while. I was so excited when I saw the badge. I couldn’t wait to put it up on my blog. It’s wonderful. Good job Linda!

  25. I LOVE the badge!! Are we doing Cafe Press, ’cause I wanna bag! 🙂 Way to go Linda. Super cute!!

  26. Linda~I love the badge. I went to your blog and viewed the entire HoHoDooDa collection. I got some great laughs, and I just have to say that you are awesome!!! Thank you for a badge that I will love looking at all year as I participate in 12 x 12 in 12! (It is my wallpaper for my iPhone and iPad as a constant, cute reminder of my commitment.)

  27. I love Penny’s idea — because I love this badge! So clever and perfect for us 🙂

  28. Great badge! LOVE it! Will post to my blog today.

  29. Beautiful badge. I love it. Will put it up on my office wall to remind me.

  30. Love the badge, Julie! I finally figured out how to download and attach it. Yeah! Thanks so much for all you are doing to help us in our quest to turn those PB ideas into manuscripts. See you along the way!

  31. Awesome concept! Have a fantastically creative 2012.

  32. Thanks for keeping the writing gears in my brain greased for 2012. This is a great idea. If I get a blog up, the badge will be displayed with pride (just working on the website…)

  33. Linda has done a great job! This is a fabulous badge! I am happy to share it on my blog! 🙂

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