September 18 Day 559: A Labor of Love

It has been a long time in coming, but I have a complete text for my multiyear labor of love. I have re-read for continuity and made adjustments as needed. I have inventoried the remaining tasks. There remain:

  • 17 new essential images to draw
  • 6 essential images to update/complete
  • 1 important fact to check.
  • and always there are improvements and editing.

This might sound like a lot but considering that there are already 64 images and 21 chapters done (nearly 50, 000 words written), I feel like I have accomplished a great deal. It’s taken eight years–but some things cannot be rushed.

I have mentioned this particular project in past posts with optimism and humility.

  • May 24 Day 77: Shine Your Light. I publicly declared my dream to finish during summer 2020. At that time I had 16 chapters and 56 illustrations done. Based on this post, you are correct that I did not meet my goal.
  • September 7 Day 183: Taking Inventory I admitted that progress was slow; only two more chapters had been completed during the summer. Perhaps exhaustion from COVID angst played a role. Or as is often the case for a project with no firm deadlines, other things took priority. When I make promises to others, I remain true to my word. Promises to myself somehow don’t count.
  • January 22 Day 320: Portraiture. I shared an image of the protagonist, Phoebe Andrews, as an example of the various portraits I had been producing. All I said was “… image is the protagonist from the labor of love that I am writing and illustrating. I will get it done this year. I must!

I haven’t mentioned it since. Possibly because I didn’t want to over promise…again. The good news is that the full story is down on paper and I feel brave enough to share with a handful of readers–even with only 70% of the pictures completed. Some people volunteered in the past and I’d like to supplement them with a few more. Any interest?

Oh, you might want to know what the story is about before you commit.  Elevator pitch: “Griffin and Sabine meet Hugo Cabaret and do some math.” It is an illustrated young adult novel featuring a 13-year old girl, Phoebe Andrews. Phoebe is the new kid in town, adjusting to a new situation, and finds solace solving puzzles. She engages in a correspondence through a public message board that leads to interesting investigations and connections.

I’ll leave it at that except to say that the message board really exists in Portland and was the original inspiration for the entire project. The intersection art is real too (at least until the city did utility work and repaved everything. I understand there are plans to repaint the intersection next weekend. I do not know if the modified sunflower design respects the Fibonacci numbers the way the original did. But I can hope.)

Published by Jenny Quinn

Mathematician. Mother. Wife. Leader. I am a professor of mathematics at the University of Washington Tacoma. Mother of Anson and Zachary. Wife to Mark. President of the Mathematical Association of America.

6 thoughts on “September 18 Day 559: A Labor of Love

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