Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Writing Exercise Wednesday #22 + Result

Ack! Where does the time go! I hope everyone can participate and really let their imagination go with this one.

WEW #22
Prompt: Re-imagining or trying a different POV from any secondary character from any story, movie, play, fairy-tale, anything goes.

Result: Toto and Toby were all excited about catching the balloon ride back to Kansas.  But things didn’t turn out exactly as they planned.
They came to find out that there was a weight restriction in the hot air balloon and unless they left Dorothy behind, they’d have to find another way home.

Toby couldn’t fly without the magic of the Wicked Witch of the West. And Toto knew he’d never be in another flying house.

So while they figured out a quicker way back to Kansas, Toby and Toto started the long walk home.  

And weren’t they all going to be surprised to meet Toby, Toto thought.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Writing Exercise Wednesday #21 + Result

My goal is to post a year's worth of exercises and then reevaluate if I'll continue them or not. The stat on blogs is that most don't make it past a year. I'll be a stat either way.

I've got some great writing exercises coming up. Fun in my opinion. But what's fun for one person may be difficult for another. I hope these exercises might change some of that. So let's start!  And I'm posting the result here and now.

WEW #21
Prompt: This is an exercise in description that may add something to your story. Take any specific words from your story or any words just to use as an exercise like I did below. Think of anything you relate to that word. Try opposites. Far fetched. Wherever the word takes you.  It may help to build a scene or convey a feeling or emotion or just describe something in a unique way. Write a few or many.
Toothpaste – clean, white, pasty, gel, smile, foam, bubbly, gag, charming
Lodge – woods, forest, cabins, forest floor, bears, peace
Jump – trip, jump rope, skip, merry, laughing, jolly, high, friends, lost breath
          Provocative – secretive, sultry, siren, dark bar, drinks, inviting

Monday, June 18, 2012

Book Review: Double Dog Dare by Lisa Graff

With pranks figuring strongly into its premise, Lisa Graff's latest middle-grade novel (The Thing About Georgie) makes a fun read starring sympathetic characters.

When the Media Club at Auden Elementary tries to pick a news anchor to read the daily announcements, Francine Halata and Kansas Bloom tie with three votes each. They agree to determine the winner by double dog dares: whoever completes the most dares gets the job. They both start out strongly: Kansas licks a lizard at recess, and Francine balances a spork on her nose for 15 minutes at lunch. But Francine quickly falls behind when she can't hang upside down on the monkey bars for an entire recess, and Kansas manages to trick the yard monitor into letting him sniff the man's armpit. That's when the competition really ramps up.

But there is more to Double Dog Dare than pranks and competition. Francine finds out that her parents are getting a divorce and doesn't tell her best friend Natalie. Instead of hanging with Natalie after school, Francine helps her father move into his new apartment. And Kansas has just enrolled in Auden Elementary because his mom left his deadbeat dad for a new job in a new town. Chapters alternate between the viewpoints of Francine and Kansas, so readers find themselves rooting for both candidates to win. Ultimately only one of them does, but how this is achieved involves a hamster, a talent show and a really bad magic act. --Lynn Becker, host of the monthly online discussion of children's books for SCBWI, Book Talk. First appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers 5/1/2012, reprinted with permission.

Discover: A school story filled with fun pranks and a lot of heart, making it an appealing choice for both girls and boys.

Lynn Becker