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Kali VanBaale

“Like most writers, I frequently rely on trusted early readers to give me constructive feedback for my work-in-progress. But after a certain point, outside suggestions can send my mind spinning off into a dozen different directions, making me feel overwhelmed, unsure, and even discouraged about my story altogether. So, on the wall in front of my writing desk, I painted the words of Michelangelo: I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free. This quote has become my guide, my emotional center, my touchstone. When I’m feeling frustrated or stuck, like I’m getting off track and losing my way, I look to Michelangelo’s words and I am reminded to refocus on my original vision of the story, what I set out to do and say at the heart of the narrative, and what I still need to do to bring that vision to completion. It reminds me to just have patience with my process, however long it may take, however many draft attempts I have to go through. I renew my faith again and again that the story will come together, because the angel, as Michelangelo tells me, will eventually be set free.”
—Kali VanBaale, author of The Good Divide (MG Press, 2016)