You are a poet, writing about a poet’s life. Yet A River of Words is written in prose. Why did you decide that prose was the best way to tell Williams’ story? True, it’s not poetry per se, but I like to think of it as poetic prose or lyrical prose. I do try to pay attention to repetition, sound, and imagery—all of which play a big part in this text as well as other picture book biographies I’ve written. I’ve been very pleased that many of the reviewers and awards annotations have mentioned these factors in the writing—it takes longer to write a book in this way . . .but a beautiful life, I believe, deserves beautiful language! What aspects of the book do you think Williams himself would have liked? I imagine he would have REALLY liked the way Melissa Sweet’s illustrations and my words combined for this book. (Not enough credit is given to the publisher/ art director whose decision it is to put us together!)
Williams had once thought about becoming a painter (his mother had attended art school) and he believed very much in the overlap of the visual and literary arts—and I do too! Thank you, my friend, for promoting poetry. The book is wonder for the ear and the eyes!Everyone -- I'm offline until April for some self-imposed, technology free writing time. But while I'm still on the Net, I'll be checking out today's Poetry Friday posts. You can find them at The Holly and the Ivy.