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Friday, 18 September 2015

Picture Book Magic

Stories like soup need some simmer time.
A new book is in the works. 

This time it's a picture book and I've been mulling it over since 2008. Yes, 7 years does seem a bit lengthy, but sometimes that's what happens with stories. Like a good soup, they need time to simmer to reach perfection, for all the ingredients; story arc, characters, text, and voice to blend together into a rich literary meal. At least that is the intention.

If only I could draw like this...

Today I began working on the dummy book, which is a rough mock up of a picture book, including illustrations.

You didn't know I was also an artist? 

That may be due to the fact that I can only draw stick people, with wobbly arms and knobbly knees. However, even stick people will help me "see" how my text can work with illustrations and where I need to "say" more or less and how the story flows from one page to the next. The words I write must allow the artist to use their imagination to complement and supplement the text.

Fewer words allow the illustrator more freedom.

In order to do this I have printed out, A Cat is Better Than No Pet at All, spacing the text on each page as I envision the story to flow.
Now I have a very good visual of how the book will look and can make the necessary edits. And a lovely paper carpet for my kitchen.

Dummy picture book layout found on

I used a dummy format that Debbi Ohi graciously shared on her website, She is the renowned author and illustrator of Naked, I'm Bored, and Where are my Books? Visit her site here for more incredible writing tips.

My goal is to have a submission ready manuscript, minus any actual artwork, by the end of October. 
This seems achievable as long as I keep to my writing schedule and unplug from all things bright and shiny (read: The Internet.)

Wish me luck as I do love a good cat meme...

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