Ten writers for children. All with something to say.

10/15/10

Words Like Seeds

Words are seeds that grow into stories. Images many times give rise to the words, for me. In Strong Moon Tonight, I saw a river, a tree, a father and son, and a mighty moon. I could see it and remember writing that image on a yellow legal pad. I wonder if other writers have beginnings that way? In the Alfalfa and the Omega, it was a voice that spoke so sassy and loud that she made me laugh out loud. In the short stories I have written for adults, I've found that the seed arrives from images and experiences. Then, my imagination joins the clan and off we go . . .
As a child, my first official story was a play titled "Santa Claus on the Moon". I gave my brother and sisters parts, used brown car coats for reindeer costumes with cutout round paper noses colored red (Rudolf, of course). My brother was Santa, in red footed pajamas and a beard made out of a paper plate and cotton balls. The Moon was three sofa cushions wrapped in a old yellow sheet with black marker craters. Our production debuted on Christmas Eve at my grandparents house, in front of 30 cousins, aunts and uncles and family friends. It was a great hit--but of course, they loved us! I was nine years old then.





5 comments:

Edie said...

Betsy,
I wish I could have seen your production of "Santa Claus on the Moon." I can imagine it was a great hit with your large extended family!

Christy said...

Betsy-you paint a great description on your work. No photos form that debut performance? I can see it in my mind, but am dying for a snapshot.

Lauren said...

I love this early work-- "Santa Claus on the Moon"-- two of my favorite things as a kid: Santa and space travel. The costumes and sets sound perfect. And a full audience on opening night! How perfect. What a great debut. And you are a wonderful sower of seeds... from a very young age.

Diane Adams said...

Aha! So now I know why you're the writer, director, producer, and costume designer of your children's plays. You've had some practice!

David LaRochelle said...

Just reading about that memory makes me happy! And I think "Santa Claus on the Moon" would make a great title for a modern picture book!