How did I Come to Write Tadeo Turtle?
I am grateful for God’s leading. In 2001 after giving my life to Jesus I started on a whirlwind experience of reading my Bible, attending studies, listening closely to God and answering His call.
For the past 11 years I have studied writing, attended courses, learned, networked and got better at writing. I became more serious about my watercolour.
Last winter a story about a turtle came to me … really, the words just flowed. I had been studying about how important we are in God’s eyes. I thought that children needed to hear that message at a young age.
Thus Tadeo Turtle was born. In my art class I started to draw and paint Tadeo. However, at that time he had the name of Leroy. When I had first written my poem the turtle’s name was Leroy. I switched to Tommy Turtle somewhere along the way.
When the writing, editing, checking, rechecking was done and all the watercolour pictures finished, I decided the best way to showcase my story at a writers’ conference would be to make it a picture book using Shutterfly (an on-line photo service for picture books). After working hard inputting all the pictures, checking the spelling, watching the placement of words I thought I could order the books. I placed an order for five books with Shutterfly.
Whew – that was done. About three hours later my husband asked me this question:
“Did you research the name “Tommy” to make sure there were no others “Tommys”?
PANIC…. real panic. NO I said.
Frantically I checked the Internet. Oh NO there were other Tommy Turtles. But I had ordered the books already. Could I stop them from being printed? Would Shutterfly let me cancel the order? I PRAYED.
I got on line with Shutterfly – chat room. YES. They could cancel the order even though it has a cancellation policy of 1/2 an hour.
Breathe… Jan… Breathe.
Now I had to find another name for my turtle. I checked all sorts of “T” names – some didn’t sound right; others were in use (some not nice turtles either).
Finally I went to baby names. As I glanced down the list – Tadeo – stood out. YES, that sounds right. And I looked at the meaning. “Praise”. I praised God for showing me how to name my turtle. And then I looked again and read that Tadeo is a short form for Thaddeus (one of Jesus’ disciples). What could be better?
I will tell you more about the route to publication later. But thanking God for the journey he has led me to. Praising and thanking Him for this opportunity.