Town mouse and country mouse

The deadline results, all finished and sent to far off America via internet carrier pigeons. A set of three reading cards for an educational package, to be published by Macmillan/McGraw-Hill. Now onto the next deadline, another poster for 5-7 magazine.

I've been thinking a lot recently. Probably not a good idea. I owe a big e-mail to my bloggy friend TLC, who started my Big Think inadvertently. It was an interesting post about a 'problem' a lot of - especially female - creatives have, in sticking to one thing at a time - it's Monday it must be a textile day, it's Tuesday it must be hand weaving...oh look, it's Friday, let's play about with some soap making. I took myself firmly in control over this some years ago, but it's been to the detriment of my writing. I have an odd relationship with writing. It is without doubt the thing I absolutely enjoy doing most in the world - more than painting, more than drawing. When I made my solemn and binding oath to my dead parents, at the tender and over-dramatic age of twelve, I vowed I would become a writer and an artist. For them. And began keeping a sketchbook and writing regularly. Now, I have always been better at writing than art, so I devoted more of my time as the years went on, to the art, as the writing would always fall off my fingers without effort - even if it was a bit purple prosey sometimes. The art - the drawing - was a struggle. It's only just got bearable, and I still work at it. I always had an over active imagination, but without the hand skills needed to visualise them. Anything you see now is the result of sheer slog. Now I realise that I haven't really written properly for years. I miss it. This blog has reminded me of how much dam' fun it is, and how it makes my heart sing, clears my head of ghosts and is generally an all round Good Thing. I've had a novel brewing in my head for about five years. I've made notes, but most of the plotting and amendments have been in my head. Thank God for a good memory. Now I've started to put it into words. I'm not sure if it's unreadable garbage, teenage-style meandering or just plain cringworthy. For the fooldhardy and curious, there's a link up there, under my profile; I aim to blog a new chapter every week, on Fridays, just when everyone is winding down and getting ready for the weekend*. It's nothing earth shattering and I never did aspire to be the next Virginia Woolf. But heck, it's good to be back on the horse.

*Unless you're an illustrator, in which case you'll be working.


tlchang said...

Sorry to be the instigation of distracting thinking! I'm still interestd in your thinking process about this... I always seem to have "reasons" to not focus more ("I'm teaching a class on it!" "I need to come up with a number of gifts, and wouldn't making them make sense?" "My daughter is having a party...")

Congrats on getting your latest project finished! (and for more upcoming!) And I'm looking forward to your writing.

Gordon Fraser said...

OHMYGAWD!!!! Bejeezus Gretel! These are superb......that first one is so warm and inviting, you truly are a god!!

ps. When the farm house is finished can I swap it for your cottage?

Gretel said...

Gosh, thanks Goth, I'm blushing...as the farm house is a palace compared to our matchbox, you are more than welcome to do a swap!

Tara, I will be mailing you probably at length today/tomorrow, so you have been warned. BTW, a mysterious BOX has arrived in the post today...I am about to investigate!

Chris.P said...

They look fantastic Gretel.
You trully are a 'Goddess' Gretel...unless Gordon knows something I don't! ;¬)

Tom J. Byrne said...

Hi Gretel
Just found your blog. Looks wonderful. You are a good example of an illustrator who is really doing it. Good luck with the novel.


The fabric of my life said...

This is SOOOO exciting Gretel. I can't wait to read it. I am not at all surprised that you are a writer. Your blogs have always been beautifully put together with delicious descriptions.

Maya said...

Ahhh...Great illustrations Gretel!!
I think you write beautifly...!!


John Nez said...

Go with the flow I'd say...

I too love to write... only I find trying to actually sell writing to make a living a bit problematic.

That novel sounds fun. I understand that YA fiction is selling the best nowadays, no doubt just because of demographics.

So why not give it a try?



Sarah said...

I have that "problem" too, I think its to do with being a creative femail, and I think I am very lucky to be so. I love your writing Gretal, and your art work, so keep going. I just got really carried away and wrote a huge comment then my computer stuck and it went, so Ill just say "yes girl, I know where your coming from, go with the flow, we all need some more hours in our days"
And I like Toast clothes too, its my incentive to get a bit slimmer!

Joanna said...

I love your town and country mouse. I had a close encounter with a mouse here before going to Italy. I lefted the cover of Dylans hutch to say good by to him at 3 in the morning. I was just talking to him and out came flying a mouse shaped thing right in front of my face. I hope he keeps Dylan company at night and they can share stories over Dylans food bowl!
Its hard to stick to one creative thing I know what you mean. I would really love to do some enamelling but there is just not enough time in the day.