Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I Speak For The Books

In the spirit of children's books, I have to pay tribute to the all-time best, and most original author, Dr. Seuss. While this blog will primarily be filled with updates regarding More Than Attic and our exciting journey ahead, I do need to share some thoughts on something dear to my heart. 

I mentioned my favorite author in my first post, but will probably never be able to express how much I love Dr. Seuss. Not only were his books my favorites growing up, but someone who can make reading fun, encourage non-readers to recite books, and create stories that are memorized forever in the minds of children is truly amazing to me. Due to all of that I feel his stories, so wonderfully original, are sort of.. sacred. And because I feel they are sacred, I have mixed feelings about Dr. Seuss books being made into big motion pictures. 

On one hand, I hope the movies encourage children to fall in love with the books for the first time, or even more in love with the ones they've already read. But on the other hand: "How The Grinch Stole Christmas," with Jim Carrey. Need I say more? Okay, I will: I have been appalled with what cinema did to Dr. Seuss' Grinch ever since my family and I went to see it on Thanksgiving in 2000.  It was the worst movie I've ever seen. It was inappropriate and ironically not suited for children. And it somehow amazingly did the opposite of capturing the essence of one of the most popular books and Christmas stories around.

So why bring all this up? I have been very anxious about how the new movie adaptation of The Lorax will pan out. The Lorax to this day is  one on my top five favorite books. As a child I recognized depth in the words, and as an adult I cry every time I read it. To think the Lorax character could end up embedded in a child's mind the way the Grinch is stuck in mine, makes me beyond upset. All I hope is that the movie tell the story as the book does. There's no need for plot changes, or inappropriate jokes and characters. Everything is already there- the script was written years ago. So with only one way to find out, I will see the movie, and will be rooting the whole time for it to do the beautiful story proud. All Dr. Seuss books deserve nothing less!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Beginning

My love for reading and writing began at a young age; so young I can’t actually remember ever not loving everything about books. 
As a child, I would recite stories from memory before I knew how to read the words. I’d memorize the illustrations to spark the lines written on each page, thoroughly impressing my audience (by audience I mean my favorite stuffed animal, Teddy Freddy Apple Bear, and a few troll dolls). I’d mark my accomplishments by writing “Abby” with lipstick in the back cover of my books. Yes, when I could recite a whole book everyone knew that I, in fact, was a super kid genius. Or that’s at least how my first books made me feel.
As I got older and started truly reading, I was mesmerized with how easily I could get lost in a story. I was a third-grade schoolgirl by day, and living in The Little House on the Prairie by night. I could be adventurous like The Boxcar Children, or as fearless as the Goosebumps characters.  And of course, I couldn’t wait to be old enough to become a member of The Babysitter’s Club.
I wrote my first book in pencil on Manila paper. It was for my babysitter, Allison, working towards her elementary education degree. I was in first grade and had a set amount of time to write a story with words and illustrations; so I wrote a book called “The Greatest Gift.” I am currently working on rewriting this story, among other new ones. Which leads to my first step in our More Than ATTIC journey: to continue writing and to start publishing children’s books. I recently finished writing my first one and the illustrations are in progress for it right now.
My drive to write children’s books intensifies the older I get. Because the older I get the more people I meet who don’t enjoy reading. The people I meet who don’t enjoy reading happen to not have read much as children. They can’t recite a Dr. Seuss line, or understand why I say “Stew” after someone says, “It’s not." I can’t bear the thought of children not having books as outlets, not being the star in their own toy rooms, and not using their imaginations to the fullest. I figure the more books, the more back covers in which a lipstick big lettered name can be written.   
So this is the beginning of a long road for More Than ATTIC and I have no idea where our story will go. But please follow along—I have high hopes for this page turner!