My sketchbook arrived in the mail yesterday. What an innocent looking little book it is. But it has (I counted) forty pages. And, each of those pages has a back and, shock horror, a front. Now, maths has never been my forte, but I believe that makes eighty sheets I have to fill up. And, yes, the sheets are small, but still: EIGHTY? Even if you screw up a few and have to tear them out (I know, that's not in the rules but I bet it happens) that's still a whole lotta sketchin'... or in my case, a whole lotta cutting, pasting and writing.
I've been practising writing really really big. I also wrote a letter to my nanna, in normal-size writing. She is, actually, extremely vision-impaired so maybe a large-print format for my letter to her would be appropriate. But, the fact is, she won't be reading my letter anyway, because it will be stuck inside my sketchbook, gaily touring around the EweEssuvAyyy. She lives in England and I haven't seen her for many years. At one point I made a commitment to write to her every week (this commitment was to myself, not to her), which, needless to say, I broke. So, Sorry I Forgot You became Sorry I Forgot to Write to You.
Who can resist the allure of reading someone else's mail?
Is it any surprise that The Jolly Postman is still one of the best-selling kids' books of all time?
This is something I wrote about the magic of letters in my first novel, A New Map of the Universe:
She has never had a letter like this before, where the feelings might be pinned in the careful folds of the paper, as much as in the words themselves... She'll keep a letter with her, stored somewhere in her clothing. She can hear it crackling as she walks around the library; she likes to slide her hand into her pocket and feel it lying there, crisp and slim and full of promise.
My soundtrack for this post is Leonard Cohen's Famous Blue Raincoat, because it's one helluva letter.