Tuesday, 24 February 2009

back in the drawer

'kitty kat' 5.83" x 8.27"

many years ago, i had a job organising workshops for health professionals. one of the workshops was 'writing for publication' presented by a popular professor. being the organiser, i would sit at the back of the room while the workshop was in progress, doodling and making notes. i picked up some valuable tips, applicable to any piece of writing.

the professor told us to write and write and write, then put your manuscript in a drawer and forget about it. for a week, a month, preferably a year..... don't even think about it during this time. then when you come back to it, be prepared to edit harshly - don't say in ten words, what can be said more articulately in five. this is the part i love the most - the challenge of reducing my words to the minimum. it's the same buzz that you get from completing a puzzle!

so i did this with the children's story i'm writing & even though it is only nine pages long, i shut it away for a few weeks. i took it out of the drawer this week and of course there was much editing required and new ideas bubbled up. i tinkered with it some more today & it is in much better shape now. yes, it's exciting, but it's back in the drawer again, just to be sure!

the first water-colour illustration is almost completed - eight more to go! it is a constant weaving of the visual with the written word. a creative dance!


  1. How exciting for you! And the first painting is wonderful!

    I'm enjoying your song today...

  2. Hi Martie - thanks. My story is about a fish (not the cat!) sorry to be confusing.

  3. I love this Patti...gives me renewed inspiration to pull my own children's book manuscript out of the file...it's been rejected several times! Please...let me know when you book is released because I really want to have a copy...the combo of your creative gifts is bound to make an incredible gift to the world!!

  4. Hi Patti, love the illustration and the creative challenge with the piece of writing sounds great. I'm in a similar process here, working with a writer on a childrens' book, so I can understand so well what you say about weaving the visual with the written word....
    Great illustration,

  5. That is one wonderful kitty kat! I love the color and the dark and light intricate background!
    "Put it in the drawer"...great advice! I sometimes stop looking at a piece of work, turn it to the wall for awhile.

  6. Greetings from Italy! Nice Images

  7. thanks for visiting my blog today.

    this book you're working on sounds exciting - have fun

    i'm turning my painting to the wall for a few days.

  8. Patti, I love all of your drawings...I hope you saw where I posted the wonderful bookmark you made for me. I do love it. Front and back!
    Good luck with this book...the picuture here is delightful. I look forward to more.

  9. Yay, that makes me SO happy that you are writing a children's book and illustrating it. I am mostly happy for the children who will get to hold you book someday soon. It is always so satisfying when gifts are spread around.


please share a thought......