Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Microest of Fiction

I am pretty new at flash fiction, having written my first two pieces for contests within the past month and two others in the same month.  I love the challenge of paring down your words to the most crucial needed to tell the story.  Microfiction, on the other hand, just a sentence or two, is still too dangerous even for me. :)

So when we found out that Mo Willems is coming to our local B&N to promote Knuffle Bunny Free, the third in his ADORABLE Knuffle Bunny picture book series that Tootsie Roll and I LOVE, we were even more excited to find that two children will win autographed copies.  To enter, you must submit either an original drawing or a 50 word essay on who will be Trixie's best friend once her beloved stuffed Knuffle Bunny "goes free".

So Tootsie Roll decided to do the essay, and sat down at the computer.  She just started 3rd grade and is, of course, a ridiculously good word processor, and it helps that she can spell like a champ.  I left the room for a bit, and by the time I came back, she had written 7 pages.  SEVEN.  PAGES.  Of course, it was in some crazy font size like 36, but still.  It was a great, touching, adorable story.  I hated to explain to her that 50 words is like.... nothing,  but I told her we could edit it and give the full version to Mo when we go to his signing.  (See that, I all called him Mo, like we're BFFs).
(For the record, I am totally Han.  Mo is totes Chewy.)  So she took it to her room, and started to cross things out, and I think she took out something like 10 words on the entire first page.  Then it got quiet.  Then she came walking into my room and said, "Mom, I just counted the words, and 50 words is like... a quarter of one page" (this being in the slightly smaller size 24 font).

So we went back to square one and started writing from scratch.  Turns out 50 words is a whole 6 sentences.  Man, it was HARD to convey an idea in 6 sentences!!!  Thank goodness she is a voracious reader and a blossoming little writer, she managed 50 words on the nose.  It will probably only make sense if you have read the first 2 books, but here it is:

When Knuffle Bunny went free, TRIXIE REALIZED SOMETHING. She needed a new best friend. She went directly to her friend Sonja, who she knew would understand. Sonja’s Knuffle Bunny was missing, too! The girls set out to find the bunnies and found a best friendship instead. “Thank you,” Trixie said.

Mo is coming at 6:30pm but we have to get in line at 9am to get wristbands for the event.  For reals.  B&N is not messin' around.  GOOD LUCK, T-ROLL!!!


aspiring_x said...

the micro-est of writers, and the micro-est of stories! so cute!!!! she did so well!!

AchingHope said...

Aw... That is adorable. I hope she wins!

Hannah Kincade said...

I used to work at the Barne. No, they do not mess around when it's a popular author. *shaking head very seriously*

That was a super cute story! And I love that picture.

I love flash fiction!! It's probably one of my most fave things to write. Shorts are just fun!!

Ghenet said...

This is adorable! I hope she wins. I haven't ventured into flash fiction yet but it's something I'd definitely like to try.

Julie Hedlund said...

I LOVE this post - and your 50 word essay. How awesome is it that your daughter not only wrote the first draft, but then sat down to try to edit it herself. Obviously you set a very good example in your house. Let us know if you win!

P.S. Tell Mo I said hi (I'm his other BFF) :-)

Dangerous With a Pen said...

Tootsie Roll says, "Thanks for all your encouragement! I hope I win, too! I have the whole series except for the third one and I can't wait to try to win it! (But mom will still get it for me if I don't win because I tried!)"

Old Kitty said...

Oh wow!! What a true talented and wonderful artist!! Well done Tootsie Roll!! Good luck with your amazing story - will we get to read it here?

All the best with this Tootsie Roll!!! Go girl!!!!

Take care

melissa said...

what a cute story! best of luck winning the signed copy!