When I’m beginning something new, I often start by writing about the writing. I just came across these words in an old notebook last month:
I think it’s going to be important to tell May’s story as a story in verse. The idea is a challenge and is precise, focusing on the small moments. With the reading I’ve done, the small moments need to tie to the whole. So many [pioneer] women’s voices are real, raw, accessible via first-hand accounts, and while I’m not picturing a journal, the sparseness of such a piece is the aim. The reader is present. The circumstance clear. Little dialogue to distract. We’ll see.
Another writing challenge I’ve never encountered, which sounds hard, immediate, and authentic. More reading to do. Karen Hesse.
I want to honor these women of the past by being as close to the bone as possible.
Margaret Simon says
“Being as close to the bone as possible.” That describes a verse novel. Writing down the bones. I like this kind of writing because I like writing poetry. I like hearing about your thoughts before you wrote May B.
The Spellbinders says
Thanks, Margaret. I’ve talked a lot about the decision to use verse for the story in interviews, and such, but it was so interesting to discover this “note from the past” now that I’m on the other side!
Joanne R. Fritz says
“I want to honor these women of the past…” And I’d say you did so beautifully!
Caroline Starr Rose says