The act of creativity is an act of letting go, and there are no limits to where, when or how creativity occurs. In Mr. Handsome’s Garden came to me over a long period of waiting during which I was just waiting – four months, eight months, I don’t know. I was in a period of gestation I didn’t know I was in at the time, but I was gardening daily, discovering conch shells and such.
There were days when the gardening was about digging up and laying stones. On those days, I felt I was working with my Irish potato-picker hands. The were other days when I was concerned with laying flower beds and managing the drainage at my place. I thought about the Incas then, and rice patties in Thailand.
During that time, I had a Facebook message from my friend June Avignone. June has always held an interest in naming people after animals based on a system of archetypes known best by June. She has always been the Cat, and in college with June, I became the Goat.
After June and I reconnected on Facebook, I emailed her a short dialogue between a cat and a goat. It was fun to write, it made her laugh, and it seemed like the basis for other dialogues that children might like to read. I began writing other pieces, like Antelope & Antelope, my favorite. Catherine began illustrating the stories. Over time, Mr. Handsome emerged – first as a voice, then as a character who could tell these stories in a way that would make sense.
As I say, creativity is an act of letting go, and there is not telling when, where or how creativity will come. Namaste.