The Writer’s Life with Children’s Author Kathryn Kessler

Welcome to the second day of my five day virtual book tour for my book, Marvin Discovers the Beach. Let me say thank you for continuing this journey with me...

When it is time to write the next adventure for Marvin to discover, I choose one of my favorite places to find inspiration. Sometimes, I pick a secluded and comfortable corner of the park close to our house or I take a short drive to the farm where I grew up. The Farm is my place to find inspiration as I reminisce about the adventures I created as a child.

Of course, I take Marvin and Hibou. For they are the one’s that create the adventure and lend themselves to my inner child and imagination. We go for a walk together and as Marvin and Hibou explore, I let my imagination take over. As ideas come to me, I record them on my smart phone.

On the day I choose to sit and write, I typically pick a day when there is no one home and the house is quiet, except for Marvin, Hibou and I. I grab my laptop and smart phone (turn off the ringer), build a nest of pillows on my bed, call the dogs into my room, shut the door and nestle into my pillow nest and start creating. If anyone were to listen outside the door, I am sure they would think I am nuts; as I talk to Marvin and Hibou while creating the story out loud as I type notes on my computer.

For me, writing on the computer is more convenient. I can share my documents between my laptop and IPad and I can keep all my drafts all in a secure place.

The length of time it takes to write each story varies. It could take an hour or four hours. I have discovered that it depends on how inspired I am to write the specific adventure and how strong my inner child is on that specific day. I do not leave a story open on the first draft. I like to finish the adventure on the first day.

After a couple of days, I go back to the first draft of the story and read it. I will make adjustments and add or subtract details. My first audience for the new adventure is my husband and sons. I read the story aloud to them and watch their reactions. Sometimes, halfway through the story, I will stop and change a small detail or sentence and start over again. With their suggestions and ideas, the story is completed. Of course, in my little circle of picture book critics, my family; my grand-daughter has the last word about the story before it goes to the editor.

My little process takes about a week. I could create faster; yet I have found this is the best “routine” for me. I create better when I am relaxed and embracing the moment.

To discover more about Marvin (and me) visit


Mayra Calvani said…
Thanks for stopping on my blog today, Kathryn.

I love that photo of you writing with the laptop and the doggies. So cute and cozy!

The book looks just darling. Best of luck with it and with your tour!
Donna McDine said…
Dear Kathryn:

How glorious your writing routine is. You all look so comfortable. The visual you provide is quite inviting. Best wishes for your continued success!

Dear Mayra:

Thank you for hosting Kathryn on her virtual book tour.

All the best,
Anonymous said…
Oh, what a precious picture of you and your writing buddies. Great interview! Best wishes on your book, Nancy
Cheryl said…
Thanks for sharing your process with us. It certainly looks like a comfy place to create.

Love the cover on this book.

Wishing you the best,

Kathryn said…
Thanks everyone for your kind words. Marvin and Hibou are my shadows where ever I go. We do like to be comfortable while writing the next adventure.

Thank you so much for hosting my book today. You have a wonderful site.

Have an amazing day!
Kathryn said…

Thank you. It is a comfy place to create. I have a wonderful illustrator, she had a lot of fun creating Marvin.

Enjoy your day,
Unknown said…
Wonderful view of you and your book Kathyrn and I can see your friends give you plenty of company to keep your creative muse entertained. Glad to learn more about you. My TBB list grows.
Kathryn said…

Thank you for following my tour. Yes my puppies do fuel my creativity and they are the best companions.

Have a fantastic day,
What a cute cover. Wish you a successful tour!
Magdalena Ball said…
Those dogs look very cuddly, and I love that you've got a special place to work - it sounds ideal.
A very cute cover and picture with your buddies.
Anonymous said…
Hi Kathryn,

I love the picture in your post. How wonderful! You are a true writer.

All the best,
Hey, Kathryn and Mayra,

Marvin's so cute! And I love the frog!
Anonymous said…
I seldom get to read any thoughts from the an author of children's books. I enjoyed reading about you and your process, Kathryn.
Thank you for posting it Mayra.