Kathleen T. Pelley; Character Development through Writing


“The more you create the more there is to create” – Kathleen T. Pelley

“The more you create the more there is to create” – Kathleen T. Pelley
Kathleen T. Pelley is a children’s picture book author who was born and raised in Scotland. On July 19, 2013 she visited The Denver Post to talk with a small group from Youth Journalism Day about being an author. Before she came, I believed being an author was just writing books that are good enough to be published. But now I know better.


Being an author changes you, calms you, relaxes you, and as Kathleen puts it, “No active writing is ever wasted,” meaning even if your stories don’t get published, the time you spent writing that story was not wasted. The time was not wasted because in that time you spent writing, you may have calmed yourself, need be, and many times you develop as a person through writing.


Kathleen came from Scotland to America in 1990, and moved to Colorado with her husband, who was born and raised in Kansas, in 1991. Kathleen says that even though she loves America and all the things it has to offer, she misses her home in Scotland. Though Colorado seems perfect to Coloradans, she felt a deep longing for home. Because this was so hard for her, she used writing to get through the hard times. If she hadn’t moved, she wouldn’t have felt the yearning for home, and she wouldn’t have written such terrific stories about Scotland.


Kathleen has five books: The Giant King, which is based on the philosophy if you treat people like you want them to act, they will likely do so. In this book, people get a fearsome giant to act like a king, by treating him like a king.

Inventor McGregor, which is created around the philosophy the more you create the more there is to create.

The Sandal Artist is about what it’s like to walk in somebody else’s shoes. Her next book, Raj the Bookstore Tiger is about a cat who sees himself as a tiger, creating a metaphor of seeing value in yourself. 

Finally she has Angus Maximus Marvelous Measurer which is inspired by her husband, and the way he is always wondering about the length, width, height, etc. of things.

When Kathleen came to The Denver Post to talk with us, the meaning of pursuing a career of writing changed in my mind. Instead of just doing the things an author does, I now know writing is about being. Being, not doing. Just as Pelley says, “We are human beings, not human doings”.