Yes I do realize it’s Thursday. Between me being out of town for the SCBWI LA conference and some miscommunication, Tuesday 12 x 12 been moved to today. But any day is a great day to welcome today’s author – Jo Hart. Jo is one of the few people I’ve known since well before 12 x 12 started. We’ve been following each other’s blogs and writing careers for going on three years now. It’s been wonderful to watch her soaring in her writing career, and I was so touched that she took it upon herself to produce the first 12 x 12 baby earlier this year. She’s also a 12 x 12 success story – read on to find out why. Please welcome Jo!
Last year was a good year for me in regards to writing. All my hard work of the past few years had finally paid off and I saw several of my short stories published in anthologies. But while I enjoy writing all types of stories, including short stories, my heart truly lies with writing for children.
2011 was the year of the short story for me, but I was determined to make 2012 the year of the picture book. When I saw Julie’s 12 x 12 idea I knew straight away I wanted to do it—it was perfect timing. Well, maybe not PERFECT, exactly. You see, I was due to have a baby in February, so maybe taking on a challenge wasn’t such a great idea, because newborn babies tend to take up an awful lot
But I’m so glad I joined up. It has been my writing refuge amongst the hot-Australian-summer-while-pregnant days, the busy-getting-first-child-ready-for-starting-school days, the super-exhausting-newborn days, the stressful-sick-baby-in-hospital days, the horrible-plague-of-early-winter-illnesses days, the frustrating-tax-time days. In fact, if it wasn’t for the 12 x 12 challenge giving me the goal of one picture book per month to aim for, I’m not sure I’d be doing much writing at all this year.
I have a lot of thanks I owe to 12 x 12, not least because I had one of my 12 x 12 stories published back in March! (You can read it in the online magazine Australian Women Online in their bedtime stories collection.) I am also so thankful for the wonderful, encouraging, helpful and supportive group of writers I’ve met through the Facebook group.
Five months and five stories to go!
Jo Hart has several short stories published in anthologies and online. She lives in rural Australia with her husband and three young children. She has worked with children in various roles, including as a primary school teacher, but currently she dedicates her time to her family, their farm and her writing. She blogs at thegracefuldoe.wordpress.com and can also be found on Twitter and on Facebook.Categories: 12 x 12 in 2012, Authors, Goals, Guest Blogging, Picture Books, Publishing, SCBWI, Writing · Tags: 12 x 12 in 2012, Guest Blogging, Jo Hart, Julie Hedlund, Picture Books, Publishing, Tuesday 12 x 12, Writer, Writing