Jesse’s Dream Skirt – the Project

Jesse loves to wear things that whirl, twirl, and flow. How will the children react to him when he wears a skirt to daycare? This project starts with a children's book but goes beyond. Jesse's Dream Skirt, was written by Bruce Mack (a.k.a. Morning Star), illustrated by myself, Marian Buchanan, and published by Lollipop Power in 1979. Decades later, it has become a classic. I’ll be chronicling the making and impact of the book, (including the backlash), making some artwork available for sale, and welcoming your input on where to take it from here.Jesse loves to wear things that whirl, twirl, and flow. How will the children react to him when he wears a skirt to daycare?

This project starts with a children’s book but goes beyond.

The book, Jesse’s Dream Skirt, was written by Bruce Mack (a.k.a. Morning Star or morningstar), illustrated by myself, Marian Buchanan, and published by Lollipop Power in 1979.

One of the things I’ll be sharing here is a chronicle of the making and impact of the book.

The making of the book:

  • Where the story was first published before it was picked up by Lollipop Power;
  • the differences in the text from one version to the next;
  • who illustrated the first published version;
  • you’ll even get to see some of those first illustrations! (I’ve obtained permission from the artist.)
  • I’ll also share some of my own initial sketches, as well as some of the final book illustrations.
  • I’ll tell you why and in what way the printed illustrations look different from my original artwork;
  • why I was asked to change my initial depiction of Jesse;
  • how much (i.e. how little) I got paid.

The impact it made:

  • How, decades later, it has become a bit of a classic;
  • what the backlash has been;
  • how much it can go for on eBay;
  • why it hasn’t yet been reprinted.

Curious? Stay tuned!

I’ll be posting these chronicles on my blog and sharing them on the Jesse’s Dream Skirt Project page on Facebook and on Goodreads.

I’ll also be making some of the artwork available for sale, as posters as well as on T-shirts and mugs and such. (What would you pay for an original? Please get in touch.)

Last, but not least, I welcome your input on where to take the project beyond the above. I could have created the Facebook Page in the Books category, but I chose to make it a Community instead, in the hopes that you’ll join me there (and on Goodreads and here on my blog) to share in the appreciation of the book, explore the issues that it raises, and — who knows? — maybe even incubate some ideas for other ways to spread the message of acceptance, and celebration, of our vast diversity.

I look forward to connecting with you.

Marian

 

P.S. Please help spread the word on social media! — Except for Pinterest: don’t share there, as their Terms of Service do not adequately protect copyright. Thanks!

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