Writing makes it all better, believe me.

When I look at Jericho (Greenwillow) now, it seems self-contained, complete, orderly, as if it were always intended to be just as it is today. I’m tempted to forget how much time, how much doubt and indecision and loss of direction are part of this story’s history. When I look at other people’s books, the same temptation threatens. In the bookstore, or the library, or in front of the bulging shelves in our little office up on campus, I flirt with the notion that each of these stories must have sprung clear and complete into the author’s head. Then, I think, the author took her pencil or typewriter or word processor and simply transferred the story to paper and voila! There it was. But of course I know better.

I have been, still am, a teacher. We teachers have learned to be mindful of the process of writing, not just the product. And the process