I can’t believe it’s only Day 5 of PiBoIdMo and I’m finding myself a bit stumped already. I think, if I’m honest with myself, it’s self-consciousness or fear or self-doubt or all of the above. One of my goals for the challenge was to stretch myself beyond the surface ideas, to get into some truly unique and fantastical areas that I haven’t explored (my WIPs, thus far, are at least somewhat grounded in reality).
I was reading Monkey With a Tool Belt, by Chris Monroe, to my son a couple of nights ago, and this book is a perfect example of the kind of lunacy that can only work in picture books. If you haven’t read it, DO. Here, in my own words, is a brief summary. Chico Bon Bon is a monkey with a tool belt. He builds and fixes things for his friends and family. One day, he spies a banana split in the distance. He approaches; it turns out to be fake. A box falls down over him and he finds himself kidnapped by an organ grinder whose previous monkey ran away. The organ grinder takes him far away to the circus. Lucky for Chico he’s wearing his tool belt. He hatches an elaborate plan to escape from the box using all sorts of tools like a drill-bit extender, hacksaw, mini-file, lemon squeezer and of course – the water buffalo noise maker. All ends up well when Chico tucks himself into bed that night at home, tool belt and all.
The book is outrageous and silly and has absolutely no point whatsoever (except, perhaps, ingenuity). It’s just FUN. Of course Chris Monroe is the only person who could write that story because, well, who else would come up with that idea?
THAT is what I am looking for. An idea that is so totally mine that it couldn’t be anyone else’s. And it’s hard. Much harder than I thought.
Is it just me? If so, please tell me what you all are doing to ignite the creative spark and come up with those awesome ideas. I could use some inspiration right now. 🙂
Categories: Books, Children's Books, PiBoIdMo, Picture Books, Works in Progress, Writing · Tags: Children's Books, PiBoIdMo, Picture Books, WIP, Works in Progress, Writing