After yesterday's sojourn into really sombre, serious territory (we were with a little girl and a squirrel in a concentration camp) today's picture book writing effort goes back to funner themes. Let's have some mad science, steampunker spirit and a crackpot eccentric main character, says I. I had an idea about an inept amateur scientist throwing himself into basement experiments and blowing everything up so ran with it and wrote "Aeschylus Abrahams: Threat with a Chemistry Set".
Today's tale was also inspired by conversations I had with comrade and webcomics collaborator, the very excellent WG. Discussing the kind of things we wanted to write, draw and creatively mess around with, I got the impetus to write a story for her to tackle. Knowing that you've already got an artist on board makes writing things a little easier. There's less sense of having to convince someone and you don't fear that your references will be misunderstood as much. Not writing for a hypothetical collaborator who doesn't exist takes away a layer of doubt and ambiguity and in transcribing the tale of Aeschylus Abrahams I didn't feel like I was talking to myself.
The lesson is that it's nice to have awesome artistic friends with whom to spitball ideas and generate collective creative inspiration with. It's nice being a writer knowing that your ideal artist is eager and amiable and not a figment of your imagination. That helps occasionally. It's also nice to jump in and out of genres tackling wildly diverse themes and concepts.
Tomorrow it's a totally different tale and back to talking to myself, but that's also very liberating because you're not tailoring something for a single person. Onward with the experiments then. I just hope I don't blow anything up...