Where I Write: Carole Lexa Schaefer
May 4, 2017 | Category: About Sasquatch | Children's Books | Gardening | Nature/Outdoors
For this series our authors take us behind the scenes to show us what their work spaces look like. Here is Carole Lexa Schaefer, author of the new The Children’s Garden from Little Bigfoot.
While growing up, I wanted to become both a poet and a journalist. As an adult student, part of my master’s degree work was putting together a photo-essay picture book for young children. A friend who owned a Seattle children’s bookstore suggested that I try to market this work for publication.
It didn’t sell, but I began writing more picture-book stories. The lyrical, every-word-counts genre captivated the poet and journalist in me. I’ve been writing picture-book and easy-to-read stories for children ever since.
At present, after having written for a long time and with many books published, I still seldom know where ideas for new stories come from.
They could be from a memory of childhood, an image during my travels, an incident at my work with young children, or from something more abstract or random. When I do have an idea that I like, I usually “think it in my head” as a story before writing anything down.
A current favorite place for me to do this sort of thinking is in my garden where I work and relax a lot. But when I’m ready to begin writing, I get up early on a day where I don’t allow any interruptions.
Staying in my pajamas I pile pillows around me; gather up some favorite pens and a lined writing tablet (I love them in mauve!); make sure some hot tea, fresh fruit, and a bit of chocolate are nearby; and . . . I start to write. By the end of the day, if all goes well, I have a draft for a new picture book and, very likely, the prospect of days of rewriting and fine tuning ahead.