Columns by Nathaniel Bellows

Writing on Drawing on Writing


When I was working on my first book, On This Day, I was so daunted by the idea of writing a novel that I turned to drawing to help me through the process. I’d always made drawings in my life, so it was a natural and comfortable practice to fall back on. As a result, the book developed simultaneously in both visual and verbal forms—on some days I’d draw from what I’d written and on other days I’d write from what I’d drawn. The two disciplines became interconnected in telling the story and showed me how combining them could not only support and inspire the process of writing the book, but also result in an unexpected final product. (The drawings were used as endpapers in the hardcover and paperback editions of the book.)

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