Purposeful Patience

We each see the world through our own very particular lens and use our inclinations and experiences to help us make sense of life. Most people, I find, have distilled these influences into a sort of personal metaphor, something that can be held up for comparison  to everything else.

I have two such metaphors. I can make anything connect in a logical, natural way to either:

Horses    

Baby horse gif

or Childbirth

Dumbo gif

Today’s a childbirth kind of day.

When the idea for a book is…um… conceived by a writer, all things seems wonderfully possible. The future book is soft-focused, as if seen through a dusting of talcum powder and hope. It’s a maybe-baby. chinchilla

 

 

 

 

 

 

But unless the writer has the remarkable talent and good fortune to be an author-illustrator, a picture book cannot be born until it has complementary artwork made by someone else — an illustrator who will create a visual counterpart to the text and bring the whole into glorious being.

In other words, the writer’s adorable book-baby is going to have another parent.Bird gif

I think embracing this truth is one of the first steps to becoming a serious picture book writer. The sooner you understand that both the process and the end result are a shared enterprise, the better. No matter how much time you have put into crafting your (under 500 word) story, when it’s bought by a publisher, it’s only halfway finished.

Illustrations can take — I’m just going to say it — years. That can feel like a long time to wait. Breathless gif

It’s critical to remember that the chosen illustrator has only just begun to nurture the manuscript. To them, it’s still a maybe-baby and needs a lot of time and attention to come to full fruition.

Some things are worth the wait. Like babies. And picture books. As I wait for BABYMOON, I trust the process. Everyone who has taken an interest in my manuscript has its best prospects at heart. I will be purposefully patient. I will keep working. I will wait in talcum powder hope for a happy book-birthday. It will arrive when it’s ready, and I’ll be waiting with open arms.

Book heart gif

Enjoy the day!

Hayley


 

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I write for young people and live to make kids laugh. My debut picture book, BABYMOON, is coming from Candlewick Press. Come hang out with me on Twitter @hayleybwrites, Facebook, or in the meadow: http://hayleybarrettwrites.wordpress.com.

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6 Comments

Filed under Advice, Creativity, Discipline, Dreams Come True, Editor, Faith, Illustrators, Inspiration, Patience, Picture books, Publishers and Editors, Uncategorized, waiting, Writing and Life

6 responses to “Purposeful Patience

  1. mariagianferrari

    I will be ready to help celebrate it when it’s here, Hayley!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. kathalsey

    “Talcum powder hope” is such a unique expression. Purposeful patience…you are so right, Hayley. Many disparate skills we writers need. We wait w/you and for the baby.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Love this post, Hayley. Can’t wait until Babymoon is born!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Elly Swartz

    I loved this post, because I am NOT patient – ha! Yet, here we are. In a business that necessitates patience : ) And, you, my friend, are the queen of patience. I cannot wait for your book to come out. xoxo

    Like

  5. Carleen M. Tjader

    Such a delightfully written piece…already looking forward to your book!

    Like

  6. What a lovely post! I think this business pushes all of us to become comfortable with waiting. It’s a long process with fits and starts, but yes, learning purposeful patience keeps one (mostly) sane. HUGS to you!

    Like

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