As I mentioned yesterday, while I let my manuscript rest from my rounds of cutting and stitching and appending, I’ll be working on a portrait. Many times my artistic talent became my savior in school. Standing in front of my classmates to give an oral report was a guarantee that I would end up pale and sweating, with my heart beating so hard my barely audible voice sounded as choppy as the worst of cell phone connections. So, whenever possible, I opted to fulfill my “report” obligations by using paint, paper, clay, or fabric.
So, you say, thanks for the colorful childhood memory, but how does that relate to writing? Simple: I have more confidence in my editing skills than my draft writing skills.
Faces or figures have always been my favorite subjects. As children do, I began as an impressionist, but being the perfectionist that I am, I developed my talent toward photo-realism. But the hard part is already done in portraiture. I don’t have to create the faces, you see, I just interpret them.
So I sweat and shake, whimper and rant, push and pull to get that draft down, but then when I have the complete story—the face, so to speak—I can rub my hands together in joyful anticipation and start editing. I can sketch and delineate, shade and lift, I can take my Berol Turquoise 9H and polish that skin until it gleams. That’s the easy part.
That’s the fun of editing.