the writer is a lonely hunter

writing by Gail Aldwin and other Dorset writers

What’s happening? It’s pandemonium!

The children’s picture book I’ve been working on with illustrator Fiona Zechmeister is doing its final round. Collaboration means that the illustrations and text for Pan de mo nium circulate between us. Now, Fiona is putting the finishing touches to the illustrations and I’m pleased to share some images that demonstrates the latter stages of the redrafting process.

Pan de mo nium is a story about Peta who doesn’t look like other pandas in the toy department because of her purple coat. This provides camouflage and enables her to get up to mischief. When a shop assistant spots Peta, this puts an end to her tricks. Peta must learn more about herself… but does this stop Peta’s fun? Of course not!

Here is the title page for Pan de mo nium. This image will also feature on the cover although the final layout is not yet agreed.

Thumbnail image

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The font was chosen early in the process, the word ‘pandemonium’ presented as if broken into syllables and the place of the title in the centre of the page agreed. The sketch of Peta gives an impression of movement and joy.

Coloured thumbnail

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Next we discussed colours. Fiona used watercolours to experiment with different shades of purple.

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Cue for a story…

I’m taking a break from working on the romantic comedy I completed before Christmas. I thought that if I give it until the end of January, I’ll have had enough time to return to it afresh. Meanwhile, I’m developing on a few short stories and flash fiction to keep my creative mind active. So far this year, I’ve entered five competitions and have stories lined up to enter a couple more. The spreadsheet is filling up and although I know most of the stories will bounce back, if I revise and resubmit, there is a chance of publication and maybe even a prize.

Ideas for fiction come to me from life. I seem to be writing quite a lot about families at present, with my sixteen-year-old son providing the stimulus.  Little things get lodged in my mind. Take Saturday, for example, he says to me:  That’s a stupid rule, Mum. Why do I have to unload the whole dishwasher when I only need one cup?

Right, down to work…

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