Sunday, December 29, 2013

Muse on leave...

So, enough with the pictures of the kids. And sorry I have been AWOL. I have been busy with family pre-Christmas (some significant illness, and significant life changes for my parents) and then there was Christmas when food preparation went into overdrive, consumption into hyperdrive, and digestion into warp drive. And then it was my birthday. I would like to announce that I am a year older than I was last year. And in the last few days I have just been lazy...

In 2012 I was wondering (quietly to myself) if my picture book writing days were over. I hadn't had a decent new idea for what seemed like an age. After all, my latest picture book While You Are Sleeping was penned several years ago. I was experiencing a pb drought. Picture books for me are all in the idea. The writing up of the idea is obviously also an important part of the whole but the idea is what gathers the words to it and hopefully sells it to a publisher and encourages readers to pick it up. When you are working with less than 1000 words, the central idea, the conceit, must be a goody. With a focus on novels for a few years I thought my picture book muse had packed up and jumped ship. It wasn't the end of the world. I was still writing. But I wasn't thrilled about it either. I love writing picture books. I love sharing them. And having my name on the front of them is pure happiness.

Well, wherever my muse had sloped off to - she sloped back in 2013. Just a couple of quick visits. But crikey she must have been off planet, or hitting up some exotic substances or something because she dropped off some very exciting fresh new ideas. I just left the door open for her to return. She comes and goes as she pleases and really, I wouldn't like to tell her how to do her job. I wouldn't make her stay against her will. A caged muse tends to produce only cliches. I just let her know I care and tell her she's always welcome no matter where she's been or what she's been up to. Never appear desperate because they can smell desperation a mile off and it is not an attractive scent. Don't go searching for ideas from other muses - then it just looks like you are copying someone else's ideas. Just keep busy and maintain an air of confidence and belief. If you trust they will return, they invariably do. And I wrote two new picture book stories.

1 comment:

Jane Bloomfield said...

Yay for you! Did you write them while pudding was digesting?? Happy New Year xx