Today’s five words are about reading. Writers do reading all the time – out loud, in their heads, on the Kindle, at the library, on the iPad…. ALL the time.
Dogs do not.
1. Picture Books – Mom reads 200 picture books a year. There’s usually a pile of library picture books on the piano bench at home and a pile of bookstore picture books on Mom’s table at Barnes and Noble.
2. Goodreads – Mom keeps track of the books she reads on her Goodreads Challenge.
3. Drooling – Drooling on the books is “not cool.” But how can I help it? They smell delicious! …Like kids’ hands. And dirt. And gum.
4. Writer’s Eye – When Mom reads, she tries to do it with a writer’s eye. She pays attention to what works, how it works, and why it works. She also notices what stinks, what’s boring, what’s dumb, what’s a waste of time, and what makes no sense. She hopes it’ll help her be a better writer.
5. Studying – Yesterday, I studied some reading, which said the word, “No Barking.”
I was exhausted from reading so hard, so I parked myself on the street for a quick nap. Mom said, “I guess you just can’t read. Can you?”
Of course I can read – I’m not barking. Am I?
Yesterday was Dr. Seuss’s birthday. He would’ve been 111 years old. That’s a lot of red fish and blue fish and a ton of hops on pops, and a million cats in a billion hats old.
Humans celebrate Dr. Seuss’s life by reading stories to little kids all over America on his birthday.
I can’t read, but I’m celebrating my own way.
Mom loves Dr. Seuss. And reading stories. And little kids. So she is on board with this. Yesterday, she left me alone while she read her ebook What If I Don’t? (MeeGenius, 2014) to some super cute kindergarten kids.
I was worried the whole time she was gone, because once when Mom visited a school, she was approached by a giant cat! In a giant hat!
Yesterday, she was only approached by one of her favorite teachers and giant bunch of kindergarten kids in giant hats.
Mom had fun reading and talking and laughing with the kids. They were great listeners and laughed at all the right times, gasped at all the right times, repeated some of the words from the story, and made funny faces whenever Mom asked them to.
They also answered a bunch of questions and asked a few of their own. Mom’s favorite question was, “Once I drew a picture of King Kong on the Empire State Building.” which isn’t actually a question, but it was fun anyway.
I waited at home and was mostly a good girl……
Cat in the Hat
Dog in the Hat
On November 1 PiBoIdMo started around here.
(BTW – If you click the link, you’ll see a dog that looks a little like me. Thanks, Tara – I think PiBoIdMo is all about me! It is…. Isn’t it?)
Mom has been in it since 2012. It makes her list of story ideas grow by leaps and bounds, so she joined up again this year. She keeps the list in her phone so she doesn’t lose it. And so nobody accidentally eats it.
Every single day this month, she will write down a new idea for a book she might want to write. One of her PiBoIdMo ideas from 2012 became Mom’s first ebook this year!
Authors need a lot of ideas, just like doggies need a lot of toys.
I have no shortage of ideas in my tiny brain, either, FYI. Here are 12 of my favorites…
1. Snuggle on a rainy day.
6. Eat the sprinkles first.
41. Wear velvet at Christmas time.
9. Check the garbage can for pizza crust.
and 12. SMILE!
On Halloween, people and pets pretend to be something they’re not. I’m not a ladybug…
or a nurse…
or a Halloween prisoner…
or a turtle…
For the past couple of months, Mom has been trying to be something she’s not. Since nonfiction picture books seem to be getting more and more popular, she thought she’d dip her toe into the nonfiction water.
She started out by reading a few nonfiction picture books each week. And she wracked her brain trying to think of a topic that she could actually write about.
She read and read and – UGH. She thought and thought and – NUTHIN’. Some of the nonfiction books were actually pretty good.
But still, the only things she really wanted to read were fiction books, and the only things she really wanted to write were fiction stories.
…maybe a fairy tale about a dog princess!
So this Halloween week, Mom decided to stop trying to be something she’s not. She’ll be what she is – a writer of fiction picture books.
And I’ll be what I am – the witch in the rearview mirror headed to the library for Read to a Pet Night….
“Let’s take a walk,” she said. “It’ll be fun,” she said.
“What are you ‘fraid of?” she said.
This week, we had to mail in the annual paperwork for me to be a therapy dog. Mom and I took a walk to the mailbox (and by “walk” I mean she dragged me past the cat on a bike, a ladder, and a couple of garden gnomes who I’m pretty sure were trying to kill me).
Mailing in my information form, shot record, and license is a rule.
If I don’t follow the rules, I can’t do my work at the Veteran’s Home and the library. Following rules is important.
Mom follows rules when she sends in her stories. She was about to enter the MeeGenius Author Challenge,
but by the 99th time she read over the rules to be sure she was doing everything right, she saw that she can’t enter because she is already a MeeGenius published author!
Mom said, “GAH!” and “Whew!” and “That was close.” She changed her plan and instead of entering the contest, she submitted her story to MeeGenius the regular way. So hope is still alive.
Mom also reads the rules 99 times every month when she submits to an agent in her 12×12 Challenge. She says, “The rules are the rules for a reason.” and “I don’t want this person to think I’m an idiot.” and “OMG. You look like an idiot!”
Is there something on my head…?