So you want to be a writer…oh, and an illustrator too


I’ve written off and on my whole life.  Besides a couple of human interest articles, I never had anything published–my busy life (and loud internal editor) overrode my drive to be a Real Writer.  It took facing a life-threatening illness a couple of years ago to make me decide to finish some of my writerly works-in-progress.  Whether I try to get them published or not isn’t something I worry about anymore.

Lately, I’ve been working on a story that I made up for my children when they were small.  I told it to them over and over again.  And when they grew older and realized I hadn’t gotten it out of a book, they both wanted me to write it down.  A few weeks ago, I finally did.  I decided that I’ll use Create Space to self-publish, so I can get a couple of copies printed.

Because it’s a children’s story, it needs pictures.  So I decided to handle that part, too.  I’ve always liked to draw and paint, so I figure why not. I know that I have limited skill and no experience in illustration, but given the personal nature of my project I’m going to give it a try anyway.

Ill advised?  Probably.  But I’ll be self-publishing, so I don’t need to worry about rejection from publishers.  This is a story from my heart to my two children.

I’ve been working on the illustrations lately, and I thought I’d post the progress of my most recent work in progress below.

I’ve already started putting the color in (with colored pencils) in this first picture.  It’s a scene where a cat finds a stray puppy eating out of his cat food bowl.


In the picture below, I’ve started coloring in the chair (that’s what the cat is crouching under) and the cat himself.


Below, I’ve filled the floor color in with an aqua colored chalk pastel.  I was having trouble with colored pencils in large areas.


Below is what the picture looks like right now.  I’ve worked on intensifying the colors and tidying up the outlines.  I’m fairly pleased with it at this point.  I’ll probably tweak it a little more, but for the most part it’s finished.


This is the 10th picture I’ve done so far for my story, called “The Big Mean Cat”.  I have several more pictures to create, and although I often feel overwhelmed and uncertain about how it’s all going to end up, I’m glad that, good or bad, I’m finally doing it.

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