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Contents > Author > Maurice Sendak > Writing before Pictures 1928- Pres.
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Maurice Sendak
Writing before Pictures
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With me everything begins with writing. No pictures at all;
you don't want to be seduced by pictures because then
you begin to write for pictures. Images come in language,
language, language: in phrases, in verbal constructs, in
poetry, whatever. I've never spent less than two years
on the text of one of my picture books, even though each
of them is approximately 380 words long. Only when the
text is finished-- when my editor thinks it's finished-- do I
begin the pictures.

(from "Worlds of Childhood: The Art and Craft of Writing for
Children" -- ed. William Zinsser, 1990 Houghton Mifflin Co.)

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