Chasing Painted Horses has a magical, fable-like quality. It is the story of four unlikely friends who live in Otter Lake, a reserve north of Toronto. Ralph and his sister, Shelley, live with their parents. One day, their mother brings home a chalkboard and installs it prominently in the kitchen. She wants her children and their friends to draw something every week, at the end of which there’ll be a vote as to which is the best artwork. Danielle, a small and quiet girl from school, draws a horse – a breathtakingly beautiful horse. And while she wins the competition, the reactions to her work set in motion a series of actions and reactions that will shape the lives of the brother and sister and William, Shelley’s would-be-boyfriend, that rarity, a bully who bullies other bullies.
This story has haunted Drew for decades, first as a play and then as a short story.