Cover Photo: A drawing of a young boy watching the stars
Illustration by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

When Doodles Tell a Story Words Cannot

Drawing is a skill like reading, like writing, which can be learned by anyone regardless of talent. It is a mental discipline.

This is , a column by Abby Walthausen that explores the nature of book illustration and the way images can shape the text for the reader.


Your smart teacher, propped up on senseless scribbles.

The Little Prince

Breakfast of Champions

Breakfast of Champions,


Arbitrary Stupid Goal

Arbitrary Stupid Goal

New Yorker

Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain

Abby Walthausen's writing has appeared in The Public Domain Review, The Paris Review Daily, The Atlantic, Zocalo Public Square, Atlas Obscura, Common-place, Mutha, Extra Crispy, LARB, Electric Literature, and LitHub. Fictional work has been published by Gigantic, Vol. 1 Brooklyn, the Made in LA anthology, Santa Monica Review, Gulf Stream, and is forthcoming in Sycamore Review . She lives in Echo Park, Los Angeles where she guides a tour about twentieth-century printmaker Paul Landacre, and is at work on a novel, ST. CYR.