Of the many indie authors I have met online, Annie Douglass Lima is certainly someone I’m thankful to call a friend. I interviewed her back in May about her speculative fiction book, The Collar & The Cavvarach, and today I have the privilege of sharing her newest release, a coloring book, with you!
I had the chance to watch this book come to life, so to speak because Annie and I are in the same Facebook writer’s group where we throw around ideas about story lines, blurbs, book covers—you name it!—and get feedback from each other. When she announced she’d finish her coloring book, I didn’t hesitate to buy a copy. Here’s one page that I colored with the munchkins. It was fun and cool, too, because we got to talking about what it means to be born again (short answer = becoming a child of God!).
I had some questions I wanted to ask Annie about the process behind creating this coloring book, so here goes!
Thanks, Annie, for joining us today! Tell us, what was your inspiration for this coloring book?
A few months ago, one of my colleagues was leading us teachers in staff devotions before work (as a Christian school, we do that twice a week). As a part of her message, she handed out markers, colored pencils, and little slips of paper on which she had printed the Bible verse she was talking about. It was written in several different fun “outline fonts”, and she turned on some music and suggested we spend the last few minutes meditating on the words as we colored them in. It was so much fun, and as she mentioned, coloring the words really made them stand out in my mind. The activity wasn’t even over before I thought, Someone should make a whole coloring book like this! People would love it, and it’s such a good way to really think about each word and phrase! And so I decided to be the one to do it.
How did you come to know of the organization you’re donating the proceeds to, and is there a particular people group that you hope your donation will be able to help?
It isn’t so much that I came to know of the organization, but that I came to know the specific missionaries involved. They’re a family who work in a “closed” country not far from here. After I got to know them, the more I heard about their ministry, the more I wanted to get involved. And yes, there is one specific people group whose Bible translation the proceeds will go toward, but for security reasons, I can’t say much more than that.
Are there any other fun or interesting facts that you’d like to share about the behind the scenes process of making this book?
It was quite a process! I had no idea when I started that there would be so many steps involved. After doing some initial research, I chose the verses I would include, searched online for free fonts, and downloaded and installed them (which involved a bit of a learning curve for me). Then came the process of choosing which fonts I wanted to use for which words and phrases of each verse in order to try to emphasize the meaning effectively. I prayed a lot over every verse as I worked on it, asking God to give me wisdom in those little details, so as to make the messages in His word stand out as clearly as possible to those who would later color the pages.
Somewhere along the way, I looked up copyright information for the version of Scripture I was using (NIV) and discovered that I could not legally create a book whose only text was Bible verses. That was when I decided to include the word puzzles too. I researched a number of different websites and apps until I found two that would allow me to create the kinds of word puzzles I wanted in a format where I could download both the puzzles and their answer keys to include in the book – and of course that would permit me to use them for commercial purposes.
I was nearly finished with the whole project when I made the alarming discovery that not all my new fonts were actually free for commercial use; some were legal only for personal use. So I had to look up each one individually (there were hundreds!) just to make sure. In the end I had to uninstall almost half of them, find new ones to replace them with, and then redo parts of almost all the verses. That was really discouraging! But I kept reminding myself Who I was doing this for, and in the end it all worked out.
I owe a debt of thanks to the “beta colorists” who printed and colored the different pages when I thought they were perfect and gave me feedback to let me know what really wasn’t. The book went through lots of changes in the process, but the final product is one that I’m satisfied with. More importantly, I hope that the Lord is, and I pray that He’ll use it to bring His Word to life in people’s hearts in a new way.
Wow! Knowing all the time, work, and heart that Annie put into making this book makes me so happy and relieved that the finished product is now available for you! If you’d like to try out a few pages, scroll down for the link to where you can download and print them out. Thank you, Annie, for this wonderful coloring book! Go and get yours today! 🙂
More than just a coloring book, this inspirational activity book will help you relax, unwind, and enjoy some creative fun while hiding God’s Word in your heart.
Kenya and later graduated from Biola University in Southern California. She and
her husband Floyd currently live in Taiwan, where she teaches fifth grade at
Morrison Academy. She has been writing poetry, short stories, and novels since
her childhood, and to date has published thirteen books (two YA action and
adventure novels, four fantasies, a puppet script, five anthologies of her
students’ poetry, and a Scripture coloring and activity book). Besides writing,
her hobbies include reading (especially fantasy and science fiction),
scrapbooking, and international travel.