An Intro to our Princess Book Series

Over the last few months I have been immersing myself into the world of children’s literature and let me tell you… it has been great fun! I remember sitting down, taking out some pens and paper (I know, very old skool!!) and… NOTHING. I found it so difficult to come up with anything at all to write but then I saw my little princess and realised that she was my ultimate muse! I knew that I wanted to base the main character on my daughter but apart from that I had nothing else to go on. If you have been following our blog, you’ll know it is called “Not Just a Princess” because I spent so long being annoyed by people telling me that my “princess” was going to be a dancer, a model etc etc, so I decided that this would be a great place to start when writing a book and I took my inspiration from that idea. I decided that the main character WAS going to be a Princess (deep down I’ve always loved the Princess story – I always wanted to be the Prince in the stories haha) but my main character wasn’t going to just be ANY old Princess she was going to contribute to society and push the boundaries of what it really means to be a girl in 2018. While I was trying to write I did a lot of research into the Princess genre and female role models in children’s stories and I was shocked to find that there aren’t more positive role models out there for young girls. In fact, there are studies which show that children develop their perspectives on gender, race and what they believe are “boys” or “girls” activities and toys based on what they learn at a young age. So, because looking for strong female role models in literature for younger girls was almost impossible I decided that this would be my starting point – to create a strong character for girls to look up to. I wanted to create a book for girls under 5, that could be paired with an empowering toy, so that I could really instil in my daughter, and other young girls, that they can be whatever they want to be in this life. Months back I had a friend do 4 custom illustrations for Jade's room so that she would see herself in different roles, little did I think that it would lead to this. (there's a picture of Jade seeing her cartoons for the first time! it was too cute!) I've added a link to his work AndreKoeKs here With the research done I looked over the blog and the ridiculous number of photoshoots we’ve done in the last 6 months for even more inspiration; now I had my muse and the idea for what the book should be!! Then the ideas started to flood through my mind… I had four books written within the week (they are completely different now and unfinished but once I knew where I wanted to go with the concept I was flying!), I had the matchstick drawings done and finally found a guy who could turn my ramblings and scrawls into what had only ever existed in my mind – it really was an amazing couple of months! As the time went on, I was having more and more ideas for other characters, friends for the Princess I was creating. This wasn’t just going to be about Princess Jade, there were so many jobs I wanted to cover, and it would be MADNESS that one Princess could do them all! Hahaha. Now I was building an army of Princesses. My Wife, who initially scoffed at the idea I was going to write a book, was looking at it saying, “wouldn’t it be cool if....”, “What about…”! Each evening when Jade went to bed myself and Shannon were having fun chatting about all the different princesses, their personalities, hobbies, where they were from etc etc. It became something that we were bonding over and we thought, “even if this doesn’t work, even if people aren’t interested in what we are doing, we’ll have had a great time doing it and our daughter will see all the work we put into it and hopefully one day (after the embarrassment subsides hahaha!) she might even like these books about what she might be when she grows up! With all of our talking and bonding myself and Shannon decided that we wanted to develop the idea even further – what if this army of princesses has the potential to be more than characters from a book?! Now we are seriously considering animating the whole series!!!! It is a huge undertaking, but we think it could be magical. WATCH THIS SPACE…

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