Saturday 13 July 2013

When Authors Play.

And play they must. This week's post is a re-post from my friend's website at Kid Lit Reviews. Sue is a great book reviewer so please check out her website:

The only scary thing about being friends with a book reviewer---one day, they will have to review your second book. Yikes!

Oh, and they also have license to make fun of you. Read on.

Have you ever wondered what award-winning authors do on their day off? Or what they do to get inspiration, find those crazy characters they get us to love? Well, I have found the secret. While looking through some new folders my new email update placed, and added emails to, I found an email from an award-winning author. She sent me a card that was titled “Fun Fun Fun.” Well, she sure looks like she is having fun.
dianes unicorn.
Can you see the crazy characters following her. I knew it! I was told I needed my imagination to develop characters and the reality is, all I need is a unicorn, an enchanted forest, and some free time. Well, they did not tell me this in the course I took. Look at those characters lining up behind the author . . . you know who this is.
dunicorn 3
This happy-go-lucky, unicorn-riding writer is working hard, don’t you think? She is working those skinny little legs for all she’s worth. And for her efforts a bunch of forest creatures trail her, ready to jump into her newest book. She has one just about ready to hit the bookstores, and the review sites are anxiously waiting for the signal that says “go ahead, rip me apart.” These characters are not in the newest book so this must be a new series under wraps. Huh! There’s an owl, skunk, pig, raccoon – a blue raccoon – and I am not sure what else. What creatures do you see in these stop-the madness pictures?
Well, now I know what writers do to find their characters and how they spend their free time. Why I was sent this evidence is a mystery. Maybe the author will show up and explain her actions and give us aspirings a hint on finding those endearing characters and the unicorn rental service that will take me to the enchanted forest.
If you are a writer, how do you find your characters and inspiration? Do you need to gallop through an enchanted forest on a unicorn (while someone, who knows who, captures your adventure)? Or do you have other ways, ways that maybe finally you will share with us novices, the ones struggling to get that first book out, or maybe just cannot find the characters to fill the pages.
(Your secrets are safe here.)

  • And my response 

Play. That is my advice for children authors. As adults writing the children books, we forget how to play as a child, which in turn-turn lets us think like a child, which in turn-turn-turn let’s us create young characters for our children’s books.
I wrote an article entitled “Creativity In The Forest”:
that explains how I get into my right brain creative zone and where my characters come from, if anybody wants to check out what a ridiculous children’s writer has to say on the topic.

To view the comments on this post at Kid Lit Reviews:

To view Sue's review of my first book (before I knew her as a friend):

Visit my author's website at: 


  1. Do you feel like When Author's Play is on a fast turning circular something-or-other and it can't get off? Just wondering. Thanks for the shout-out and the back link!

  2. Oh, you're welcome for the shout-out and back link.

    Yes, this post feels like a merry-go-round and I'm having fun!

    Thanks for inventing this post. It was a great idea!