Friday, December 9, 2011

The Case for Children's Literature

     Although I have only been obsessed with writing for children for a short period of time, I have begun to notice a slight rift between those who write books for adults and those who write books for young people. Now, I am not sure, and don't quote me on this, but it seems that children's authors are not taken very seriously in the writing world. I just can't imagine why.

    Since the day my daughter came into this world via a human suction device, we have pretty much shoved books in her face. As you can probably understand, we did not start her off with The Grapes of Wrath. Although there is key vocabulary in this literary classic such as ma and pa, which admittedly would have done her some good, we felt that if we really wanted to create a reader, we would need to introduce something more appropriate for her developmentally.  And so it began. Snugly, bed-time reads of Goodnight Moon. Then it was family beat boxin' to Oso Pardo, Oso Pardo, (which is the Spanish translation of Eric Carle's Brown Bear, Brown Bear.) Soon, anything with funny language became an instant hit, such as I Love You, Stinky Face. And now we are on to books that help us explore some of the hard-to-grasp concepts for kiddos. Our daughter has been really wondering about death as of late. I get things like, "Look at the worm, mommy. Is it died?"  So I picked up a copy of Charlotte's Web from the library.  Now I get, "When is the girl's daddy going to kill Wilbur, mommy?" And then,  "I want to see the picture." Morbid as it may be, she is hooked! Heck! I am hooked! Reading books together is one of the sweetest ways to bond with a little person.

Our growing book collection:

    Children's literature is the stepping stone to other great literature. I don't think you can have one without the other.  Literature for children is so important because it help the wiring of their sweet, little brains and perhaps more importantly, to bolster their imaginations. It causes them to make worldly connections like hey, my baby brother is sometimes stinky... he also has a face...I can call him "stinky face" like the book! I would be so honored to one day be considered part of the literary world that creates life-long lovers of books.That is where YOU my friends come in to the picture. There are a few things I learned this week from blogging:

1) how to finally spell zucchini
2) that carpal tunnel syndrome is serious business and I might have to invest in some wrist gear
3) that by blogging, an aspiring author can really get a start because their name is out there in the universe.

     This weekend, I will give everyone a break from my obnoxious Facebook notifications but I challenge you to  do one thing and one thing only... tell one person about this blog. Your grandma, your third cousin Helga in Bavaria, your parrot Winston. ANYONE! Who knows? The next person they talk (or squawk) to on the street may be a literary agent or editor for children's books!  Wouldn't that be wonderfully serendipitous?! Have a great and relaxing weekend! Read a book!

Mother/Daughter bonding over Do You Want to Be My Friend?

True story: "You look yucky in this picture mommy." "Why, thank you my child."

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