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The Story Behind Your Baby’s Story

The first personalized book I ever wrote was “Your Baby’s Story”. Here’s the story behind the book, which is an ode to the entire process of giving birth!

Having my first child was a transformative experience for me, and not just because I had this literal piece of me come out into this world. I also happened to quit my old job at the same time, because I was sick of the rat race and decided it would be nice to work on things, I actually loved doing. I didn’t want to just live to work anymore. 

In my case that was writing. I have always loved books and the written word for as long as I can remember, and I have always wanted to write for almost as long as that. There are at least two unfinished novels gathering silicon dust on a dark, forgotten corner of my hard-drive, and my plan was to re-engage with those and see at least one of them through to the finish.

But children have a funny way of upending and transforming any plans you have, both small and big. 

In my case, I became obsessed with documenting every moment of his life, in an effort to capture the sheer joy of having him in our lives. I doubt a child has ever been photographed and video recorded as much as ours was (although I suppose every parent feels that way!). In my case, I wanted to record and remember not just the big moments, but all the little ones as well, the quotidian events that made us laugh and smile, the ones that tend to get lost in the hurly-burly of everyday life. 

I also wanted to write about the experience – but do so in a way that would allow me to share it with my child later. Thus, was the notion of a children’s book born. The idea was to write a whole series of them, documenting not just his birth, but his subsequent life as well. We could read them together as he was growing up.

Most authors document their personal experiences and put them in their books; in my case, it was the reverse: I wanted to write the books as a forcing mechanism to document my experiences with my child.

I originally planned these for an audience of one: this was my quixotic endeavor to show my child just how much I loved him. But once I started writing and thinking more deeply about the books, I realized that this could be a good series of books to publish out to the world. At some point, most children ask the question: “Mommy, Daddy, how did I come into this world?”. I had written out the answer for my child, but I loved the idea of allowing parents and others to personalize the book for their own child and read it to them as well.

I took this on as my project – not just writing the books, but also allowing people to personalize the stories for their own children. My background is in computer science so I loved the idea of applying both sides of my brain to the project: to write the books as well as building out the personalization engine, website, etc. The personalization engine is a constant work-in-progress. In particular, for this series of books, there are two key options pending:

  • I want to allow people to upload their own photos and add them to the story – so it becomes a sort of a scrapbook or hybrid between a photo album and a story. You may notice that the illustrations have been intentionally done to include a lot of photo frames or photos – the idea is to allow users to replace those images with their own photos. 
  • I want to offer more options to capture the diversity of parent types and birthing options available today. The story as it stands is horribly heteronormative; I recognize that and am working on adding additional options.

In any event, this was the first book that was personalized and published. As with all firsts, it will always hold a special place in my heart!

General Questions

Manimal Tales is a publisher of beautifully illustrated personalized books. We have personalized books for children and adults. From birthday books to new baby tales, and from bedtime stories to ABC books, we have custom books for all occasions!

We even offer PhotoStories, our personalized picture books with photos.

At Manimal Tales, we fervently believe every child should be the hero of their own story!

Personalized books (or custom books as they are sometimes referred to) allow the reader to become the hero of the story - literally.

The main character in the story is the reader / receiver of the book, and is represented by an avatar that looks like them. There are usually lots of additional personalized details printed in the stories, including the receiver's name, age, family members and more.

Our PhotoStories offer a whole new level of personalization by allowing you to add your own photos into the story and have them printed out with the book.

Browse through our collection of custom books to see which ones work for your loved ones!

It's super easy to personalize your own book!

Browse through our collection of personalized stories and select the titles you want. On the product page, add the details required to personalize the book (name, age, family members, photos etc.). You can then preview the entire book before you buy, so you know exactly what you're going to get!

Once you're satisfied, add the book to your cart, enter your payment details and your unique, one-of-a-kind personalized book will arrive on your doorstep in 6 to 9 days!

The short answer is that it depends on the personalized book title in question!

All books will have your loved one as the main protagonist and their name will be printed on the book cover as well as in the story.

In some of our books like Dreamland and What Will I Be? the (the An ABC Story) your loved one's name is printed on every page.

In our Manimal Tales series, in addition to your child's name, you can select an avatar that looks like your child.

In our custom baby tales, Your Baby's Story and Your Baby's Story (Sibling version), you have to enter names and select avatars for the parents and the siblings as well.

And for our PhotoStories, you can further customize the books by uploading and adding your own photos directly into the book. The stories have been written to incorporate the photos as part of the story itself.

Whichever personalized book you do choose, we guarantee your loved one's will love our custom tales just as much as we do!

We have books for all ages and occasions! On the menu bar at the top of the page you can filter through our collections of personalized books by a variety of different criteria.

We have personalized books for:

- Birthdays

- New babies / baby showers

- Bedtime books

- Back To School / ABC books

- Seek & Find books

We also offer custom books with engaging stories about:

- Friendship and bravery

- Standing up for your beliefs

- Animal rights and adventure

We have personalized books across all ages:

- 0 to 3 years

- 3 to 6 years

- 6 years and above

- Adult stories

Lastly we have our PhotoStories, which allow users to upload photos and have them become part of the story!

- Happy Birthday Personalized PhotoStory

- Your Baby's Personalized PhotoStory

Nothing beats getting a book with your name on it!

Personalized books are treasured and loved by all, and make great keepsakes.

We offer custom books for all occasions, ensuring you will always find a book to meet your needs.

You can always reach us by filling out our Contact Form.

1 comment

  • I can’t wait to see a sample. You are so creative. By personalized do you mean I can send a picture of me getting an IV because I was dehydrated from vomiting?

    jeanne snow

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