Karen Romano Young

From the desk: Doodlebug: My Novel in Doodles and Humanimal Doodles, a science comic in print and on the web.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Hot to Work

That title: should it be Too Hot to Work ? Maybe. But I don't want it to be. I've got a new idea, or TWO new ideas, and I want to work on them, even though I don't have air conditioning, I'm surrounded by panting dogs, and I'm perspiring not so delicately.

I don't want the idea to cool. Don't want the heat to go out of it. Want it to keep on cooking, and don't want to just back-burner it and leave it to simmer.

Yes, those are some thermometer-oriented metaphors. Interesting, isn't it, that the level of vibration and resonance in an idea finds parallel in relative temperature?

So what are these two boiling, pot-lid jangling concepts I can't put down long enough to cool off, or should I say chill out?

One is the new graphic novel I'm working on, called Yeti and Yak. It's about a girl who's working on a graphic novel, when a character on her inspiration wall (something like Pinterest, which I have become quite pinterested in during the last few days) comes to life and insists on being put into the story. He's so desperate that she does his bidding -- and then has to deal with the consequences. Just sorting out the ramifications of my main character's action has kept my mind spinning for several months of drafting, and now that things are somewhat unraveled I'm working on weaving visuals into the story. I've decided that the visuals will be on two levels: one is the graphic novel my character is creating; the other is the character herself and her environment (which includes the guy in the picture on the wall...do you get why I've been spinning?) So one of this week's tasks has been to nail down the look of my main character herself. You can see my first efforts above and here.

The second idea? It's actually a major revision of an idea begun in rough form nearly two years ago. Unlike my new graphic novel, this book (whose title keeps changing, but it's about my journey to the deep sea in the little submarine Alvin) began with images, and when all the pictures were done, I did a draft of the writing. Now I see things differently, and I'm going back and rescanning all my art, rearranging it, rewriting it... I am inhaling this opportunity to do things over. Remember DO OVERS from games played as a kid? Because I'm midway through a writing project I can have as many DO OVERS as I want -- or as many as I can stand.

I'm off to grab a popsicle and work some more. I've discovered that time with unfinished ideas is kind of like play. And what's not cool about that?

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