7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #507: Featuring Harriet Muncaster

h1 October 30th, 2016 by jules



 

In the spirit of Halloween, British author-illustrator Harriet Muncaster visits 7-Imp today to tell us all about her series, Isadora Moon, which features a girl who is half-vampire and half-fairy.

Let’s get right to it, and I thank her for visiting.



 

Harriet: Isadora Moon feels like something I was on track to create for a very long time. Looking back, it was about seven years in the making, although I didn’t realise it at the time.

Ten years ago, I created a different, more adult character, called Victoria Stitch [pictured below], who was a mean gothic fairy with a stuffed toy, Pink Rabbit, that followed her around everywhere. I wrote and illustrated two (unpublished) books about Victoria Stitch while I was at university, and after my degree I continued to work on her. She evolved as my work evolved over the years and eventually ended up being drawn in a purely pink and black style. I really liked the aesthetic of this and so did the publishers I showed my Victoria Stitch work to. However, I was always told she was “too mean,” “too spiky,” “too adult” for children’s books but that if I wrote a more grown up book about her, I would lose the illustration side of things.

 



 

I went away and decided that the whole pink and black/gothic aesthetic was too good to waste and that I should create something that still had the same aesthetic but was more child-friendly at the same time. I decided that a highly illustrated young fiction book would work well. So, Isadora Moon was born! She is a much friendlier, sweeter version of Victoria Stitch and also a character in her own right. Victoria Stitch was just the path that led me to create her. I debated over whether I should give Victoria Stitch’s Pink Rabbit to Isadora Moon, and in the end I decided to. Pink Rabbit suits Isadora Moon so well, and he is much happier being with a gentler and kinder owner now.

 



 

I started out creating Isadora Moon by sketching out character designs for her. [A first sketch opens this post.] I basically wanted to make her a child version of Victoria Stitch, looks-wise. When I had drawn her, though, I started to wonder why she had little bat wings. What species was she? I decided the reason she had fairy-like bat wings was because her mum was a fairy and her dad was a vampire. I then decided that if Isadora Moon was half-vampire, she should have little fangs too.

So Isadora Moon, Vampire Fairy was born.

 




 

Once I had written a story and illustrated it, I sent it of to my agent, who then sent it to publishers. This time there was interest in the book and I was lucky to get a four-book deal for an Isadora Moon series with Oxford University Press.

 





 

Working on the Isadora Moon series had been an absolute dream. It’s been amazing to work on a project that has come so much from my heart and that I am so passionate about. I adore Isadora Moon and the world that she lives in, and I have loved being able to write longer stories than picture book length. It is so much fun being able to really get into the stories and develop the characters. The pictures are created using pen and ink and watercolour.

 



 

All images used by permission of Harriet Muncaster.

Note for any new readers: 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks is a weekly meeting ground for taking some time to reflect on Seven(ish) Exceptionally Fabulous, Beautiful, Interesting, Hilarious, or Otherwise Positive Noteworthy Things from the past week, whether book-related or not, that happened to you. New kickers are always welcome.

* * * Jules’ Kicks * * *

1) I voted early!

2) Andy Shauf’s The Party.

3) My poetry-sharing friends.

4) Oliver Sacks’ Gratitude.

5) Story time.

6) The girls’ Halloween costumes are DONE!

7) A visit with a dear friend.

What are YOUR kicks this week?

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7 comments to “7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #507: Featuring Harriet Muncaster”

  1. I love Isadora Moon, what a character. Thank you, Harriet. Getting for the library.
    Jules, so glad you introduced us to Harriet. The Squirrel Girl.looks costume looks like a success. Did you receive a poem?
    My kicks:
    1. We’ve been at our new place 15 months and I finally have our garage so I can park inside.
    2. Meeting with the board of VoiceCatcher, a.local online journal. Brainstorm how to continue its work.
    3. A good class with fifth graders on Friday. They have been challenging.
    4. A successful art lesson with a class.this week. I am.an Art Discovery volunteer for a.class.
    5. Planning a poetry project with a second grade class.
    6. Writing group.
    7. A poem about my mother.
    Have a great week.


  2. Good morning, Imps!
    Good morning, Harriet and Isadora Moon and Pink Rabbit!
    Have a great weekend and a safe and happy Halloween!

    Jules: High-five for voting.

    Jone: Kudos for all of the writing.

    My kicks from the past week:
    1) Bookings
    2) Rehearsals
    3) Costumes
    4) Managing
    5) Entertainment
    6) Planning
    7) Foundation


  3. Isadora Moon and Pink Rabbit are so fun – I love their interactions in the illustrations, especially the ballet sketches. Thanks Harriet for sharing her and how she came to be!

    Jules – yay for voting and hooray for the finished costumes – they look terrific! I will have to check out Gratitude.

    Jone – congrats on the cleared out garage and the good class with your challenging 5th graders!

    LW – hooray for more bookings and rehearsals! And costumes!

    My kicks this week:
    1) An incredible work success.
    2) Very grateful for my good luck in being able to work with talented, smart, dedicated & compassionate people.
    3) Late night emergency vet trip with Miss Daisy resulted in diagnosis of “geriatric dog may have strained some muscles.”
    4) Same geriatric dog is clearly back to herself again, which is a relief.
    5) Sleeping in.
    6) Halloween fun with friends last night. I went as a Nasty Woman Who Votes.
    7) Read “Shrill” by Lindy West.
    7.5) Halloween on Monday. Cannot wait to see more cute and imaginative kids costumes and hand out candy.

    Happy Halloween Imps! Have a great week!


  4. Rachel: Congrats on the good work! Glad that Daisy is okay. Strained muscles are no fun for anyone.


  5. Jone, where’s your poem about your mother? Is it at your site? To answer your question, a few friends sent some great poems this week, ones they found and loved, and that always makes my week.

    LW: Happy Halloween to you, too!

    Rachel: Glad Daisy is okay. Love your costume. I’m going to hand out candy this year, instead of walk around, because I want to be there at the door for once to see everything.

    Have a great week, all!


  6. LW: Love the bookings and foundation.
    Rachel: Loved your Halloween photos.
    Jules: http://deowriter.wordpress.com


  7. Thanks, Jone!


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