NEWS & UPDATES
INTERVIEW: HOW TO WRITE AND PUBLISH A CHILDREN'S BOOK
The Panel Podcast with Jen Hilz
December 18, 2019
Have you ever wanted to write a book? Jaclyn Amend, a former marketing executive and stay home mom, decided she wanted to write a children's book for her son, Mack, about their neighborhood. Jaclyn walks through her inspiration behind the first book, how she took the idea from concept to reality, and in the process founded her own publishing company in Dallas, TX.
ARTICLE: LAST-MINUTE GIFT IDEAS YOU CAN BUY IN DALLAS
December 12, 2019
by Diana Oates
Turns out Amazon Prime isn’t always the answer to our shopping problems. Nope, not even two-day shipping is going to solve the quandary of gifting something unique that will actually be enjoyed by the recipient. Here are our favorite gifts to give this season to everyone on our nice list. And the best news? These presents have a Dallas presence.
FOR THE KIDDO: GOODNIGHT LAKEWOOD OR GOODNIGHT PARK CITIES BY JACLYN AMEND
Keep your awesome auntie status by picking up a thoughtful gift for the little one in your life. And whether said kiddo lives in Lakewood or the Park Cities, they are bound to be obsessed with these stories that explore the things that make their neighborhood recognizable and unique. Purchase them here for $25, as well as at a variety of boutiques around town. Five percent of all sales benefit the Lakewood Early Childhood PTA and the Rise School of Dallas.
ARTICLE: DALLAS MOM AUTHORS TWO CHILDREN'S BOOKS
December 25, 2018
by Timothy Glaze
For Lakewood resident Jaclyn Amend, writing a children’s book was merely a way to encourage reading and promote a sense of wonder for her two sons.
Writing then became, in her words, a labor of love. Now, she’s the author of two locally-themed bedtime books.
Amend wrote Goodnight Lakewood in preparation for the birth of her second son, born in 2017.
It’s in the style of the famous Margaret Wise Brown book "Goodnight Moon," which has been read as a bedtime story to countless children across the globe since its’ publication in 1947.
In "Goodnight Lakewood," however, the “saying goodnight” text focuses on landmarks in and around Lakewood.
“I thought it would be a cool idea to write something that had familiar places in it for my boys,” Amend said.
“I wanted to have something for when I had two of them to read to, and reading with them every night became a really special time for us.”
So much so, her children began recognizing landmarks from the book in their neighborhood.
“I wanted my kids to always be asking to go places, to see things, and the more we read 'Goodnight Lakewood,' the less anxiety I saw towards leaving the house,” she said. “It was as if they knew the places they were going, and it wasn’t as scary since they read about them in the book.”
Sensing her book could be enjoyed in places other than her own home, Amend partnered with an illustrator and published a small run of "Goodnight Lakewood" books that she made available via a website.
“The response from our community has been so much more enthusiastic than we could have imagined, and we are constantly humbled and touched to hear of families spending time together reading our book,” she said.
In that spirit, she began writing Goodnight, Park Cities, a similar book that includes landmarks such as the Katy Trail, Highland Park Village, Caruth Park, and SMU tailgates.
It’s 32 pages in hardback, and Amend anticipates the books bound and ready to be distributed in 2019.
Amend also held a book launch party at the Moody Family YMCA in late October.
She and noted that five percent of all Goodnight, Park Cities sales would benefit the Ashford Rise School of Dallas.
“I don’t know if I consider myself a writer yet,” she said, laughing.
“Really, I just wanted something special to share with my boys. The fact that it turned into something that others can enjoy and benefit from is just incredible.”
ARTICLE: FROM LAKEWOOD WITH LOVE: GIFTS THAT CAPTURE OUR LITTLE PLACE IN THIS WORLD
Lakewood/East Dallas Advocate
November 26, 2018
by Karen Watts
Talulah & HESS as gifts for all ages, with the tagline “beautiful giving, modern living.” A local favorite is the book “Goodnight Lakewood.” If you are searching for the trendy BuDhaGirl Bracelets, look no further.
ARTICLE: AUTHOR JACLYN AMEND PENS BEDTIME TALES ABOUT DALLAS
November 5, 2018
by Alexis Manrodt
Exhausted your library of bedtime books? If your kiddo no longer wonders where the wild things are or how to overcome a bad case of stripes, consider tucking them in to a local literary adventure by author Jaclyn Amend. This month, the mom of two celebrates the release of her latest book, Goodnight Park Cities.
Thanks to the 32-page tour of the historic neighborhood, your family can snuggle up in bed and stroll through Highland Park and University Park during all four seasons. Greet the geese in Lakeside Park and meet up with a crew of spirited mice at an SMU tailgate, before ending your adventure taking in the twinkling lights in Highland Park Village during the holidays.
Much like its literary antecedent— Margaret Wise Brown’s classic bedtime tale, Goodnight Moon—Amend’s book (and her previous effort, Goodnight Lakewood) offers darling visuals and lullaby-like rhymes, all with a delightfully local twist. Illustrator Emily Calimlim brings the neighborhood to life with watercolor renderings of local favorites throughout Park Cities.
Amend initially dreamt up the project while preparing for the birth of her second son in early 2017. (She is mother to Mack, now 4 years old, and 20-month-old Bear.) The Lakewood Hills mom wrote Goodnight Lakewood as an ode to her neighborhood that she could share with her children one day.
“I realized other children and their families might enjoy the book as well,” she explains. So, Amend and her husband set up a small publishing company—named CamberMark for her boys’ nicknames—and partnered with the local Hill Print Solutions to produce a small run of books.
“The response from the community was so warm and encouraging that I wrote Goodnight Park Cities for families to read together as well. So far, the reception has been equally enthusiastic,” she shares.
But most importantly, Amend says that she’s gotten positive reviews from her most important critics—her two sons. “Mack loves it and recognizes many featured landmarks in the books. Bear is drawn to the vivid illustrations and, I imagine, will soon begin the recognize spots as well!”
The books also serve as history records of sorts. While in the final editing stages for Goodnight Park Cities, Amend learned that Highland Park Soda Fountain would be closing. “We chose to keep it in the book and commemorate the more-than-100-year-old Highland Park institution,” she explains. “I hope it brings wonderful memories to mind for readers of the book.”
As for future installments in her book series? “There are so many special communities in Dallas to celebrate – I think I will just keep going with Goodnight Oak Cliff next!”
ARTICLE: "GOODNIGHT LAKEWOOD" AUTHOR CELEBRATES THE PARK CITIES
Park Cities People
October 16, 2018
by Bianca R. Montes
From the Katy Trail and Caruth Park in the spring and summer to SMU Boulevard fall tailgates, a new book sets the stage to take readers on a whimsical journey through the Park Cities.
Based on the seasons, the 32-page illustrated storybook follows the seasonal traditions of the Park Cities, ending in December with the lighting of the Big Pecan Tree and Highland Park Village’s beautiful white-lit trees.
Author Jaclyn Amend said her story as a writer began in early 2017 as she prepared for the birth of her second son. At the time, she wrote “Goodnight Lakewood” about her immediate neighborhood and dreamed of one day reading it to her children.
Amend and her husband created a small publishing company and partnered with a local printer to print a small run of books.
“The response from our community has been so much more enthusiastic than we could have imagined and we are constantly humbled and touched to hear of families spending time together reading our book,” she said.
“We want to celebrate other neighborhoods in Dallas in the same way. It is in this spirit that I wrote “Goodnight Park Cities” with lots of input from our friends who have either grown up in the area or live there now, or both.”
“Goodnight Park Cities” will launch at 4 p.m. Oct. 27 at the Moody Family YMCA.
ARTICLE: MEET JACLYN AMEND OF CAMBERMARK PUBLISHING IN EAST DALLAS
July 25, 2018
Today we’d like to introduce you to Jaclyn Amend.
Jaclyn, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Yes, of course. I graduated from the College of Communication at The University of Texas at Austin in 2001 and went on to work in public relations, marketing and corporate communication for nearly 15 years before starting a family and opting to stay home with our boys.
In early 2017, as I prepared to welcome our second son, my husband and I were reading a few books before bedtime with our oldest son, who was three at the time. In our travels, we had picked up a few “goodnight” books from some favorite vacation destinations and our son was enthusiastically recalling some of our favorite spots in the illustrations. I wondered aloud whether a book existed already that celebrated the things in and around our neighborhood in Lakewood and East Dallas that make living here so unique and special.
I researched a bit and learned that, while some of these books existed for states and cities as a whole, there were very few that focused on micro-communities. I originally wrote “Goodnight Lakewood” for our boys and envisioned printing a few copies for our family and close friends to enjoy. It wasn’t until we found our incredible partners in the project, including our illustrator Emily Calimlim, that I realized other families might enjoy the book as well!
From there, we created a small publishing company and developed a relationship with East Dallas printer Hill Print Solutions on production of our hard cover books. I launched a small website that allowed friends and family to pre-order the book and shared it through social media channels. The reception from the community was so warm and enthusiastic. Not only did online sales far exceed any expectations we may have had, but we were also approached by local retailers who are now carrying our book in their stores. I have been humbled to be invited to local schools and libraries for story times and have done local book signings as well. It is so meaningful to hear parents and their children say they enjoy reading our book together at bedtime!
After “Goodnight Lakewood” launched in late 2017, several of our friends with young families who reside in Highland Park and University Park asked if we had plans to create a book celebrating their neighborhoods. With this in mind, I wrote “Goodnight Park Cities,” which is currently in production and should be available before the holiday season this year. This journey continues to be far more rewarding than I ever could have imagined and I hope to continue creating meaningful work in the future that families can share together.
Has it been a smooth road?
As with all new endeavors, we have had a couple hiccups along the way. Shortly after printing our first run of books, we realized the lettering on the spine of the book was inverted, so we had to invest additional time and money to reprint the covers before the books were bound. All things considered, however, we have had a remarkably smooth experience starting our company and publishing our first book.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
Our publishing company is CamberMark Publishing, LLC. The name is derived from the letters in each of our son’s nicknames, Mack and Bear. We specialize in publishing local, family-focused children’s books. I am most proud of creating wholesome products that encourage parents and children to spend quality time together reading. While we have focused up until this point on our own books, we hope to provide a path for other aspiring authors and illustrators to produce their work in the future as well.
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Dallas is a fantastic place to live and work, I believe. The evolution and maturity of neighborhoods within Dallas, and the growing sense of pride in these micro-communities, create even more opportunities for creativity for us in the future. I would absolutely recommend Dallas not only as a place to start a business, but also as a place to raise a family.
“Goodnight Lakewood” is available at www.goodnightlakewood.com for $24.95
“Goodnight Park Cities” is available for pre-order at www.goodnightparkcities.com for $24.95
Address: 7324 Gaston Avenue, Suite 124-474, Dallas, TX 75214
Website: www.goodnightlakewood.com and www.goodnightparkcities.com
ARTICLE: RESIDENT SPOTLIGHT: GOODNIGHT LAKEWOOD
White Rock Life Magazine
by Jennifer Hagler
Jaclyn Amend recently put Lakewood on the map when she launched her new children's book Goodnight Lakewood. Inspired by Goodnight Telluride, which she and her husband BD read to their sons at bedtime while vacationing at their favorite summertime destination, Jaclyn featured the iconic landmarks of Lakewood and the surrounding area including White Rock Lake, Dallas Arboretum, Lakewood Country Club and Lakewood Theater. The 32-page book is poetic and filled with colorful illustrations and life-like characters.
Jaclyn's two sons, Mack and Bear, inspired her to write the book which can be purchased at Dallas Arboretum, Dallas Museum of Art, Talulah & HESS and online (GoodnightLakewood.com). Jaclyn and her husband donate five percent of their proceeds to Lakewood Early Childhood PTA.
The Amend family has lived in Lakewood for three generations and BD's parents graduated from Woodrow Wilson High School. Jaclyn grew up in Austin but she feels at home in Lakewood.
"I have fallen in love with East Dallas," Jaclyn said. "I love the families. There is such a sense of community."
Jaclyn is currently writing Goodnight Park Cities and plans to launch it soon. She is accepting pre-orders for the self-published book which will feature SMU Boulevard, Highland Park Village, the Big Pecan Tree and more.
TELEVISION INTERVIEW: WHIMSICAL ADVENTURE WITH "GOODNIGHT" BOOKS
WFAA Channel 8 TV
Good Morning Texas
March 28, 2018
Author Jaclyn Amend and Illustrator Emily Calimlim visited "Good Morning Texas" to talk about Goodnight Lakewood and to announce the upcoming Goodnight Park Cities, which is available for pre-order now!
ARTICLE: LAKEWOOD RESIDENTS PUBLISH CHILDREN’S BOOK ABOUT THEIR NEIGHBORHOOD
January 10, 2018
by Tricia Sims
The inspiration for a new children's book geared toward Dallasites, Goodnight Lakewood, arrived at bedtime.
“One night, we were reading books before bedtime with our older son, Mack, who was 3 at the time,” author and Lakewood resident Jaclyn Amend says. “One of his favorite books was a ‘goodnight’ book about our favorite vacation spot in Colorado. He had just reached the age where he was able to remember and talk about the places he was familiar with in the book. He was so excited to recognize images in the book that it made me wonder if a similar book existed about Lakewood and the area surrounding it where we love to live everyday. I wasn't able to find such a book, so I decided to write it.”
Goodnight Lakewood is available for purchase in local retail stores Talulah and Hess, the Dallas Arboretum and goodnightlakewood.com.
The 32-page, full-color book takes readers through Lakewood and East Dallas, highlighting the neighborhoods' landmarks. Amend’s words and Emily Calimlim’s illustrations bring the journey to life.
“We wanted the images in the book to be as evergreen as possible, and we found ourselves naturally focusing on the wildlife and outdoors,” Amend says. “We connected with Emily by luck, really, after receiving a tip from a local illustrator to look on an online message board where young, talented illustrators post their work. We reached out to her, and she met us the following week for a tour of the area, and we hit it off. She just brought it all together: the whimsical, fairy-tale-like story we wanted to portray about our community.”
Scenes in the book are set at White Rock Lake, the Dallas Arboretum and Lakewood Theater.
“We found inspirational images for her to begin with for each scene, but we really gave Emily a lot of artistic freedom with this project, and she far exceeded our expectations on all fronts,” Amend says. “She has been such an incredible partner in this project, and we can't wait to work with her again.
“We just hope that other children and families enjoy saying goodnight as much as we do to some of the wonderful places and things in and around Lakewood that help make this community so very special."
Five percent of all sales of the book go to the Lakewood Early Childhood PTA.
Goodnight Lakewood is the first book to be published by CamberMark Publishing LLC, a company Amend and her husband founded in 2017.
“I hope families enjoy reading this book together and that it becomes a favorite bedtime story for their children, as it has for ours,” Amend says. “We have truly been humbled by the support of the community on this project and hope to continue creating meaningful work in the future.”
ARTICLE: LOCAL RESIDENT AUTHORS AND PUBLISHES CHILDREN’S STORYBOOK: "GOODNIGHT LAKEWOOD"
Lakewood Bubble Life
December 13, 2017
Lakewood Hills resident, Jaclyn Amend, recently wrote and published a local children’s book titled Goodnight Lakewood. The whimsical, rhyming tale is accompanied by vivid illustrations and takes readers on a journey through Lakewood and East Dallas visiting unique spots including White Rock Lake, the Dallas Arboretum and Lakewood Theater. It also features howling coyotes, flying monk parakeets and a fishing egret.
The idea was borne one night while picking out books to read before bedtime with her oldest son. “We noticed we had several ‘goodnight’ books from some of our favorite vacation spots,” Amend said, “but didn't have a book to help us say goodnight to the neighborhood where we love to live everyday: Lakewood.”
Goodnight Lakewood is a 32-page, full color, hardback children’s storybook written by Jaclyn Amend, illustrated by Emily Calimlim and published by CamberMark Publishing. Books can be purchased directly at www.goodnightlakewood.com or at local retail stores Talulah & HESS and the Dallas Arboretum gift shop. Five percent of all sales benefit the Lakewood Early Childhood PTA. The first public, in-store book signing is scheduled for this Saturday, December 16 from 2-4pm at Talulah & HESS at 5810 Live Oak Street.
“We originally wrote this book for our boys,” Jaclyn shared, “and just hope that other children and families enjoy saying goodnight as much as we do to some of the wonderful places and things in and around Lakewood that help make this community so very special!”
ARTICLE: NEIGHBORS PEN NEW CHILDREN'S BOOK 'GOODNIGHT LAKEWOOD'
Lakewood/East Dallas Advocate
October 31, 2017
by Will Maddox
Jaclyn and BD Amend turned what neighbors love about our neighborhood into a whimsically illustrated adventure in “Goodnight Lakewood.”
The Lakewood Hills couple reads the famous children’s story “Goodnight Moon” to their children with regularity, and saw spinoffs of the book in their travels, such as “Goodnight Telluride,” a favorite vacation spot. They decided to tell a similar story through the eyes of their children and highlight the things they love most about our neighborhood.
“Goodnight Lakewood” takes readers around White Rock Lake, visiting with monk parakeets, a duck wedding and, of course, the local coyotes. The rhyming couplets keep the story moving and the colorful illustrations will keep children engaged.
The Amends have two young boys, and their 3-year-old son recognizes different parts of the book as familiar places he has visited with his family. Though not all the sites are in Lakewood proper, the story is meant to be told through the eyes of a child and provide familiarity and entertainment.
Jaclyn worked in public relations, and BD did a stint writing entertainment reviews for the Austin American Statesman, but the Amends had never written a book before. “It was a great learning experience,” says BD. “It was dipping our toe into another world.”
Jaclyn wrote the book over the course of 12 drafts, and went to look for a illustrator in the area. When they contacted local illustrator Eric Barclay and found out he needed several years lead time, they realized they might need to find a new strategy. Barclay pointed the Amends toward a message board where authors connect with young illustrators, and they found Emily Calimlim, a Lubbock artist whose drawing of [a] chicken in fighter jet goggles caught their eye. They made contact and found out that Calimlim would soon be in Dallas, and they took her for a drive around the neighborhood for inspiration. She was in from the start.
The family used Hill Print Solutions, a long time East Dallas printer whose former CEO had played baseball with BD’s father in the neighborhood as children. “We kept everything local as much as we could,” Jaclyn says.
The book can be purchased in pre-sale online now, and the books should be ready to be delivered by Dec. 1 at the latest. “We have been shocked at the support,” says BD. Five percent of all profits will benefit the Lakewood Early Childhood PTA.
Though they are the most familiar with Lakewood, the Amends have not ruled out writing another book about a different Dallas neighborhood, but for now they are focused on their boys and getting this book off the ground. “We live and breathe it every day,” BD says of the neighborhood. “I really love this part of town.
“I just hope my kids enjoy it,” Jaclyn says.