Thursday, June 28, 2007

My First Memory, in Verse

Recently I posted my earliest memory and invited fellow readers and bloggers to do the same. A few folks took me up on it, and one of them upped the ante by suggesting that we also write a fictionalized version.

One problem: My first memory occurred when I was two years old, and any story in which the main character is two will have to be a picture book. I don't do picture books. I have great respect ... nay, awe ... for those who can write good PBs. I cannot.

Nonetheless, never one to shrink from a challenge, I've taken a stab at this and written a rhyming picture book, complete with talking animals. Actually, it came out more like a kids' rap song. For maximum effect, you may wish to read it while imagining a beat box in the background.

Linda Lou Goes to the Zoo

There once was a girl named Linda Lou.
She wasn’t four, she wasn’t three, she was only two
When she went with her mom and her sisters to the zoo.
For a tour that was led by a lady in blue.
(A lady in blue. Dressed all in blue.)

They saw some little critters all covered in fur.
The woman of the cloth didn’t know what they were.
In fact, her proclamation created quite a stir.
“Look,” she said. “Seals!” Um, yeah … sure.
(Um, yeah … sure. I mean … der.)

One of the animals sat up and gave a stare.
“We’re otters, silly nun, the seals are over there.”
And with that, Linda Lou, our heroine so fair
Turned redder than the shade of a Barlett pear.
(A Barlett pear. A juicy red pear.)

The poor, flustered nun had a horrified look.
Her mouth turned down and her hands, they shook.
Linda Lou hid her face and a deep breath took
And said, “Let me out of this picture book.”
(This picture book. Stupid picture book.)

Author's note: To those editors out there who may be reading this, feel free to leave your contact info in the comments section. And let the bidding wars begin!


Katia Novet Saint-Lot said...

Linda, this is really weird. If you've read a few of my posts, you may know that I'm having some problems managing my time at the moment. I'm also new at this blogging thing. Anyway, for several days, I've thinking I have to post a comment on Linda's blog - I like it ! - to let her know that I mentioned her in my blog, etc, etc. Sorry for taking so long to do what may seem obvious to everyone. Anyway, I come to your blog, and here I see your last post. Too funny. Good for you for not "shrinking from the challenge." Your story is fun. Are you sure you don't want to keep on working on it ? You may be onto something new, here. Anyway, it's nice to meet you :)

elysabeth said...


I just read an article on the "blue boards" that might help you with the rhythm and rhyme thing - - was very interesting -

I applaud you for attempting this challenge - because I wouldn't even know where to start with rhyming stuff - because I've not written a children's book or anything close to it.

Also, I see on your profile you are working on a MG mystery series - I'm curious - because I have an idea for a 50 states mystery series but just not sure how to do all the states as separate stories or how to incorporate my factoids and other fun information I've gathered to do this series (it stems from my first contest submission 2 years ago that took a shared second place - posted on - called Train of Clues) -

email me and I'll share my thoughts with you and see if you can give me some guidance, et cetera - E :)

(hahaha - my word verification is - banyakty - ban yakty - sounds funny - now have to incorporate that into something)

LindaBudz said...

Hi, Katia! Thanks for the encouragement! And the inspiration for this post, of course! I'm new at this blogging thing, too, so we can muddle through together.

Elysabeth, I will email you, though I'm not sure how much help I can be. I'm pretty new at this mystery writing thing, too! Looking forward to checking out Train of Clues!

Melodye said...

I love the idea of looking back to discover our earliest memories. Usually, they're the ones that shape us the most, whether we recall the specifics or not. The first chapter of my current WIP starts when I was 3 years old, standing by the pulpit in my (evangelist) father's tent revival meeting.

Glad to "meet" you, Linda. I'm looking forward to reading more of your writing!

LindaBudz said...

Hi, Melodye! Now, that has some great potential. I'm intrigued already. Looking forward to reading that book someday!

Maybe I'll have to "misremember" things and tell everyone you started that book after my blog inspired you to write down your earliest memories. "Ah, yes, I knew her when...."


Rilla said...

Hey Linda Lou,
Look at you,
Going to the Zoo
All dressed in BLUE

That's as far as I get in rhyming :0 I'm sure I could write some doozies for the EA blogs on poetry in the slush pile!
Way to go, I love the woman in blue turning all red. What is the world coming to when seals are otters and picture book protagonists jump off the page...literally!
I had this image of a little girl hair standing straight up, eyes bugged out, mouth like a black O, peeling herself out of the story and running like hell across the hand that held the book.
Wow, you're an evocative writer. Can't wait to read those mysteries!

LindaBudz said...

Thanks, rilla! Glad to know at least one person finds my writing evocative. I think you should get a job as an editor so I can send my manuscripts to you!