This Saturday, January 17th, a guild of Sojourn writers will be meeting at the 930 from 9:00-11:00 AM to review the drafts of several children's books that we hope to publish within the next year. Our hope is to do books on the gospel message, our gospel identity as a church, the gospel life and biblical manhood and womanhood. Please pray that the Lord will guide and direct our time this Saturday. While reflecting and preparing for the writer's guild, I came across a great piece by Moonbeam Award winner Sally Lloyd-Jones. She quotes Caldecott Award winner Paul O. Zelinsky. Here are his words about how a great picture book works followed by her comments:
"In any good picture book, words and pictures complement each other, each of them necessary and neither sufficient."
"Working on picture books, you must check your ego at the door. At least if you want a good picture book. It's what one of my publishers calls, "Breaking through The Author Barrier": where you suddenly find that what you're most concerned with is not keeping all of your words, but making the best book. Even if that means, as Faulkner said, murdering "your darlings." Those pieces of text you are so fond of and think are so wonderful and the very apex of your literary skill usually are the very things that must go. Because in order to keep them you make everything else work around them and end up forcing things. And that, as far as I can tell, never works in books and stories anymore than it does in life."
May the Lord bless us on Saturday with the kind of humility that checks our egos at the door. May the gospel go forth because of our efforts.