It is often a challenge to review the work of other authors, especially if they write picture books. In the past I have employed the services of my neighborhood kids, my own children, and sighted readers in general to give me the full picture. This spotlight post was written by an author that has handed me an even greater challenge: To review her Graphic Novel.
It was such a pleasure for me to learn more about what she does and how she does it and I am sharing her work and inspiration today.
Comic Strips vs. Picture Books
By Jewel Kats: Visual Storyteller
That’s who I am.
This sounds so odd to even my own ears. (Yes, I read my work aloud!)
Now, you may be wondering what’s so “odd” about being a “visual storyteller.” Why am I questioning my professional identity? Here’s a quick confession: I barely passed art class. I’ve snatched up top marks in Language Arts throughout my life, but that’s about as close as an “A+” has EVER touched the word “art” in my report card.
Fast-forward: Now, artwork is my lifeline.
It’s funny how life turns out. I’ve grown up to become an award-winning children’s author, and a popular women’s reality-series comic strip writer. I totally rely on artwork to help unravel the stories that sit squashed in my brain.
Writing a picture book and a comic strip may seem totally different. They’re not! In my eyes, they’re much the same. I’m telling a story through words, characters, and of course, ART. In some cases, I’m working with manuscript pages. In other cases, comic strip panels are put into play. However, the end result—at least I hope--is a good story.
Many people ask me how I’ve managed to write so many books in a relatively short time. Reality is: It’s the process of seeing my thoughts come to life through artwork that gives me the momentum to keep galloping ahead. I’ve developed a healthy obsession with illustrations. They give me an instant euphoric high which just makes me want to write more, more, and more. And, so the circle keeps going.
So, the next time someone asks me what I do for a living…I’ll tell them I’m a visual storyteller, and proceed to tell them what I just told you. Only, this time, I won’t be questioning my own identity.
To learn more about Jewel Kats and her work go to
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