Childish Inspiration

I’m sitting here procrastinating about writing an assignment that is supposed to talk about solving the Synoptic Problem, all the while fretting about the support agreement that I am supposed to be writing when I get back to work next week (I’ve never written one of those before). I’m procrastinating because I’d much rather be writing my own material…writing my own books and drawing my own pictures.

A Twitter conversation a couple of days ago sparked some memories of the books I used to love to read when I was a kid, and that still inspire me today to write and to draw. I thought I’d share 🙂 (and procrastinate some more)

I have always loved to read; and I have always sought inspiration and refuge in equal parts between the pages of books.

From the moment I was able to borrow library books from the school library I maintained a bag-load of glossy tomes to keep me entertained. I remember during one phase I borrowed masses and masses of craft books that were packed full of cheesy 70s paper mâché and macrame projects, and I think I drove my mother insane with requests to make things.

Other times I devoured novels and found myself hiding in the leaves of the magic faraway tree or exploring foreign lands with characters I met nestled within the black and white lines of text. I’d lie in bed at night and wish that the people I met in those books were real and that my dolls would come to life. (Am I the only one to have done that?)

Some books left more of a lasting impression than others.

Some books I borrowed over and over and my name appeared on the borrowing card more than anyone else’s for the years I was at that school. All of the books that I borrowed repeatedly had similar characteristics, and I borrowed them for the same reason. They inspired me. They made me dream and imagine a future of action. The funny thing is that these books continue to inspire me thirty years later.

The first set of books are picture books written and illustrated by Bill Peet (Walt Disney’s best writer and storyboard man). Beautiful rhyming stories accompanied by vivid colored pencil illustrations. Whimsical stories. I still borrowed these books right up until I was in grade 6. I would read them and dream of writing my own books and drawing the pictures to go with them.

The other book that I borrowed over and over was an equally whimsical piece of work with page after page of gorgeous watercolour paintings. A book that had me searching under logs and within canopies of leaves for little people for many years.

I bought myself a copy of this book a couple of years back, and I still look at it from time to time. Such remarkable attention to detail and beautiful artwork! Such imagination!

Ever since I was a child I have dreamed of becoming a writer and artist. These books fed that dream.

Sometimes when I get busy writing technical specifications and business cases I forget to feed the dreams of my inner artist and they begin to wither, and I get tired and jaded.

I am learning that it’s important to keep dreaming. To nurture the creative connection to our Creator. To allow that connection to be expressed.

The books I want to write and the art I want to create these days bear little resemblance to my childhood dreams, but the desire to write and to create is as strong as ever…….now, if I could just knock off this assignment and stop worrying about work that I don’t need to do until next week……. 🙂

What inspires you? Do you think it’s important to be inspired in life? Even as an adult?

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