A Long Time Coming

Attack of the Pocket Fuzz

by Jennifer Greene-Sullivan

Illustrated by Joshua Wichterich

The idea of Esmerelda overcoming the Pocket Fuzz Monster will finally be published 22 years after I first jotted down the idea. In 2001, I brought my newborn baby girl home, and I got to experience a wonderful rebirth of childlike wonder and imagination. Anya, my oldest daughter, was fierce and unafraid to try new things, without a hint of worry or of danger.

She played with vim, and she introduced me to wild imaginative characters that she introduced through acting out make believe sitcoms and plays in her little playroom. She found excitement in the most mundane objects and circumstances.

As I watched her grow and reveled in her play, I found myself becoming more imaginative and creative. Thus, I began to sketch a children’s book character named Esmerelda who took great imaginative journeys while existing inside the real world as an ordinary, yet precocious young girl. I typed the first children’s book with Esmerelda in 2001 and emailed it to my dear sister-in-law with the title: Esmerelda’s Surprise. After the manuscript, I listed future titles: Attack of the Pocket Fuzz and Esmerelda’s Pink Poodle Pocketbook.

The first book found itself lost in my email outbox until 2020 when I finally had her illustrated and published her in January 2021. Then to my amazement on the way to work one brisk fall morning in 2021, I pulled in the parking lot of my former elementary school that had been closed since I entered the 7th grade. While I stood in the parking lot, staring into the doorway of Chester Elementary School, I quickly saw the plot of Attack of the Pocket Fuzz run amuck through CES hallways.

The plot and the characters blossomed on my commute, and I scribbled my ideas in the NOTES of my eyephone. I wrote it in a week before I sent the manuscript to my illustrator, yet since its completion in June of 2022, I stalled on the formatting. It seems too daunting a task for me to complete. Finally, with some editing help, I am ready to publish Attack of the Pocket Fuzz on March 1, 2023!! I hope you all love Esmerelda and her dog Rudy as much as I do.