Sunday, February 28, 2010

Novels in Verse

I recently wrote a narrative poem, which is picture book length, but a bit advanced for the picture book set. An editor suggested I might build it into a novel. That idea is a bit daunting, but I've been reading novels in verse to explore the possibilities.

I fell in love with Diamond Willow by Helen Frost. It's quite unusual, with a shape poem on each page based on the shape of the "diamond willow" pattern. Apparently, in the far north, willows that have been scarred sometimes develop a diamond pattern around the wound. This wood is often used to create special objects.

The main character in the book is named Diamond Willow, and the painful scars of her life develop into beautiful new patterns.


Jeannine Atkins said...

Good luck with this transformation, Linda, which sounds intriguing. And I want to be in a reading group with you. I love Sharon Creech's Love That Dog and Hate That Cat, and Cynthia Rylant's God Went to Beauty School, though these may be for a younger audience than you're aiming at, if you're reading Helen Frost. I love Marilyn Nelson's Carver.

Nice to see you briefly at the Carle last weekend!

Joyce Ray said...

Linda, This sounds like a fantastic story. I also love Marilyn Nelson's work. Have you seen The Freedom Business? Marilyn wrote narrative poems about freed slave Venture Smith. She interspersed them with his own narrative. Masterful! Good luck with your work. What a wonderful title!