Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Highlights of Higlights: Day 1

Today's blog is brought to you by: The horse that wanted to be Pooh Bear.

HI! I'm back from my writing retreat! Did you miss me? I missed you!

You know how sometimes you get a mental image of how something is going to be, but you're dead wrong? That's what happened to me this weekend.

I grew up with Highlights magazine. They were in every doctors office and school. Now that I'm an adult, Highlights is still going strong and is known as the Creme-de la Creme of Children's magazines. I've always thought that if I could have an article published in Highlights, then it means I've made it! If I'm good enough for them, I can write anything!

I suppose that's why I had a mental image of the Highlights editorial offices to be New Yorkish; A hustle and bustle of editors rushing around in black suits and uncomfortable shoes among offices that are furnished in a way that would make James Bond jealous.

So, imagine my surprise when we arrive in Honesdale PA, (a quaint town with beautiful churches and an old-time feel) and I arrived at the building below. I didn't really know where I was. At first I thought I was at the retreat center. But then again, that couldn't be right because I was under the impression that the retreat was out in the middle of nowhere.

Eventually (because I'm quick witted and all) I realized that this beautiful old home was the Highlights Editorial offices.

I wasn't disappointed in the least to find that my imagined stream-lined, pseudo New York office wasn't a reality. This down-home, small town feel was a breath of fresh air.

Before heading out to the retreat center, they gave us a tour of the Highlights Editorial office.

This is the foyer. I felt so cozy and right at home. :0)

This is one of the editorial offices. We got to hear from several of the editors. They were all so nice.

Speaking of feeling at home . . . I was giddy when the tour included visuals of how the Highlights covers have changed over the years. One of the covers they used as their modern example was illustrated by my friend and critique buddy, Karen Lee. How fun to go so far away and see things that are so near and dear to me. :0)

They also had Karen's cover framed and hung on the wall. (I know such cool people!)
I just thought it was interesting to see one of the first (and this may be the very first) covers of Highlights.

And then they took us out into the woods, in the middle of nowhere . . . more to come.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for writing this so well. I'm also thankful for your pictures as I didn't take all that many. I hope there will be more to come. Your blog is great!

Angela said...

That is so cool! Thanks for sharing--I would have been as surprised as you. It seems so homey and uncluttered.

Highlights is one mag I would love to get into, just because like you I had such fond memories of it as a kid and it is definitely a feather in the cap to be published there.

adrienne said...

How cool! Thanks for the glimpse inside. I never would have pictured it that way.

Janelle said...

Thanks for sharing this, Christy! Great to see Karen's art on the walls! Go Karen!

Bish Denham said...

Welcome back Christy! And thanks for the pictures. Now I have a visual of where I send my stuff. So far no acceptances, but I've been encouraged with little hand-written notes. Gotta love those positive rejects.

C.R. Evers said...

Hi Janice! I"m so glad you stopped by my blog! Thnx for your kind words and I'll send you some of the picture that I took. This retreat gave me a lot to blog about, so I will show more picture as well as noting what I learned.

Hi Angela! YOu should go for it! You're a talented writer!

Hi Adrienne, I had a feeling that I wasn't going to be the only one who was surprised.

Hey Janelle, It was so neat to see Karen's work on display and as part of the tour. Awesome!

Hey Bish! Keep working at it. If you get the chance, you may want to attend one of these workshops. I'll blog about the benefits in a future post, but these Highlights retreats allows you to meet the editors, and those who attend the retreats get to bypass the slush pile. That's awesome that you've had personal feedback. That's always a good sign.

polkadotsuitcase said...

WOW -- what a great building. Thanks so much for the behind-the-scenes peek. And three cheers for Karen! That's beyond super-cool.

I'm glad you had such a great experience -- because I get to live it through you, hee hee!


Kelly said...

What a beautiful building! How lucky for you to go to the retreat!
Looking forward to hearing how the rest of the weekend went!

Corey Schwartz said...

Oh, wow! I'm dying to do a Highlights retreat some time. Can't wait to hear more.

Solvang Sherrie said...

How cool -- we get to see inside the Highlights offices! Thanks for posting this. I can't wait to read more!

Ian Sands said...

Well i know Karen but I don't have a ginormus dino skull in my office... which i think puts me ahead of the game.

Oh, and one time i was in Karen's studio and she was painting a cover for a Highlight mag and she said, "Do you think i should paint this shirt green?" and i said, "hmm" and she said, "You're right. Orange it is!"

True story!

Suzanne Casamento said...

What a great tour! Highlights is the best. And how cool is it that you saw your friend's work there? ; )

Christina Farley said...

This is so cool! I've always wondered what they're place is like. It's like I got a peek into a whole new world. Thanks for the pictures!

C.R. Evers said...

Thanks guys! :0)

Corey Schwartz said...

When's the next highlights retreat? Sign me up!

C.R. Evers said...

Corey, they have different retreats w/ different themes all through the year. Except for the winter. click on their name in my post and it will take you straight to their Highlights Foundation web-site. You should go!