Five Ways In Which Writing A Novel Is Like Making A Quilt

1. When you first start making quilts (or writing novels), it’s probably best to keep the structure simple and use only a couple of colours. That way, you won’t get overwhelmed, and it won’t take you years and years to finish. Simple things can still be interesting.

Double nine patch quilt

2. Even if you follow a pattern, you’ll use your own materials and probably change the size, so you’ll end up with something that only you could have produced. (This can be a good or bad thing, depending on your skills.)

3. When you’re piecing a quilt together, you need to consider how the elements will look when placed next to each other. It’s more interesting if there are various shades of light and dark beside each other.

Milky Way quilt

For some reason, everything I produce is tinged with blue.

4. You will start off with a lot of enthusiasm and energy, but halfway through, you will wonder why you ever began this project. You will make lots of mistakes. Things may begin to unravel.

Unravelling quilt

But problems can usually be fixed with a bit of effort and skill.

They can even be fixed years later. If, for example, you sit your malfunctioning printer on your bed and it leaks ink over your quilt. Ha ha ha, as if anyone would be so silly as to do that!

Repaired quilt

5. In the end, you will be glad you persisted, because you will have created something that is warm and beautiful and comforting. Wait, that only applies to quilt-making. Probably. Depends what sort of novels you write.

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