I play many roles for Idiots’Books. Of course, I am the writer. That’s what it says on the title page of every book. I’m also the manager, keeping track of the to-do lists and making sure we stay on schedule. At various other times, I am the bookbinder, the art director, and the heavy box carrier. Yesterday, however, I had the misfortune to engage in one of the least glamorous aspects of my life as Robbi’s collaborator.
Robbi is cooking on a new children’s book, and needed a model for her protagonist’s particular gait. Enter Matthew, in his supplicant role. She says “Jump!” and I jump. She says “Bend over a bit more!” and I bend over a bit more.
She says, “Ok, now twist to the left and lift one foot up, but point it ‘strong,’ not like a little girl would point it. NOT LIKE A LITTLE GIRL WOULD POINT IT, I SAID!”
Apparently, when I hold my arms parallel to my shoulders while bending them at the elbow while putting my head down while turning to the left and pointing one leg, I point that leg like a little girl would point it. And apparently, this is unacceptable to Robbi.
So if (or should I say “when”) you see the illustrations of the protagonist in Robbi’s new children’s book and see that he has a leg that points like a little girl’s, you’ll know why.
And if Robbi ever approaches you about modeling for her, I’ll know why you’re running as quickly as you can in the opposite direction.