Laurel R. Johnson

April 28, 1999

Post #834 – 19990428

Dear Daniel Pinkwater,

I wrote years ago when my boys were younger and reading your books for the first time. I have enjoyed both your comments on PBS and your encouragement to the Ditzy Alabaman who has written several great books at your encouragement.

I am thrilled that so many adults know you now, who, if they hadn’t paid attention to their children’s books, would have missed your great sense of fun. My request is in regard to the lack of illustrations in adult fiction these days. I just finished reading Winston Churchill’s CONISTON, which if you haven’t read, I recommend, both for the story and the illustrations.

As I began my next book, I checked it our for illustrations before I realized this is a modern book, and (boo-hoo), no illustrations. You have alot of influence. I know you like illustrations. I feel that books are the lesser for not having them, and artists are not being employed where they might enlarge our visions.

Why should children have all the good pictures?


Laurel R. Johnson

Daniel replies:

Do I have to tell you that publishers are generally stupid, slow-moving, motivated by the cheesiest kind of impluse for self-preservation, and greed, unable to absorb the simplest ideas, and frequently liars, cheats and thieves? So, my occasional attempts to get one to let me do a novel with pictures have all failed. And now...without my suggesting it, Sholastic tells me they want one like that. We've agreed to all the contractual stuff--now it will be another couple of months until I see said contract, later still when I get my check...but I am already planning FAT CAMP COMMANDOS, which will have pictures! So there.