A Friday Short And Sweet… Because Why Not?

I know.

I’ve been so sporadic in my posting.

But hey, it’s summer 🙂

…and I warned you 🙂

badge created by Loni Edwards

So anyway today, because I saw something really awesome and cute, and because I feel like it. I am posting a Summer Short & Sweet!  (And yes, there’s that outdated badge again… pretend it says 2013.  I keep forgetting to ask Loni if she can fix it!)

Ready for some fun?  Wait til you see this cuteness!  I saw it on Julie’s blog and immediately asked her if I could use it for today’s Short & Sweet.  She is generous and nice and she said yes! 🙂  So we are having a picture prompt today from the talented and incomparable Julie Rowan-Zoch.  If you haven’t visited her blog, you are missing out.  And if you need art done for anything, contact her!  She is awesome!

Illustration copyright Julie Rowan-Zoch 2013 used by permission

The illustration was originally titled “Hybrid” (in case that sparks any ideas for you.)

So here’s our 5 minute task for today:

Think about this little guy.  (For simplicity’s sake I will refer to him as a boy, but of course he could just as easily be a girl.)

Who is he?
Does he have a name?
How old is he?
Are the grown-ups holding his paws his parents? Grandparents? Older siblings? Someone else?
Why does he have that expression on his face?  Is he unhappy?  Confused?  Worried? Thinking up a plan?…?
Where is he? Or where is he going?
What does he wish for?

Now, you have a choice.

1. You can write a couple sentences of character description.
2. You can write the opening sentence of a story featuring this character.
3. You can write a pitch for a picture book about this character.

I’ll do some examples…  (well, I’ll try anyway :))

1.  Felix is 5.  He loves fishing and climbing trees and baseball.  He also loves bugs and dirt and strawberry licorice and his pet lizard, whose name is Not Lunch.  He does not like taking a bath or eating green beans or having to share his train set with his little brother Louis who always takes the track apart.  He worries that he is the shortest boy in his class.  He lives in the blackberry thicket behind Farmer Pumpernickel’s pumpkin patch.

2.  Felix was not at all sure about piano lessons with Miss Sharp.

3.  Felix’s father wants him to learn karate.  Felix’s mother wants him to take music lesson.  Felix doesn’t want to disappoint them, but he longs to do something else.  He wants to learn to ride a horse so he can be a cowboy.  Is there any way to make mom and dad happy and still stay true to himself?

Yeah.  Okay.  Not perfect 🙂  But you get the idea!

Now you go!  Write your Short & Sweet in the comments.  Maybe the exercise will spark a story idea for you.  Or maybe someone else’s character description, opening sentence, or pitch will spark an idea.  Who knows?

Have fun!

And have a great weekend, everyone! 🙂

39 thoughts on “A Friday Short And Sweet… Because Why Not?

  1. This_Kid_Reviews_Books_Erik says:

    The kid's name is Orange Creamsicle and, yes, he does have a name. He's six and he's crossing the street with his parents (Mom on left, Dad on right) while going to Emily's Everything Else store. Young Cream is thinking up a plan to get rid of his babysitter, who isn't with him today, but whom he knows is coming tonight. 🙂 She makes him eat broccoli and go to bed early. 🙂

    I can't think up a pitch, but I answered all the questions (and added somethings)!

  2. Stanley & Katrina says:

    Hi Everyone! Neighbor Girl here with my short and Sweet

    This is Cheetah and she is 8 years old. Her parents are holding her paws and she isn't happy about it. The reason she is unhappy about her parents holding her hand is that she is worried that the other kids in her class will take it the wrong way. She wishes that she could walk by herself.

    And the first sentence of a picture book:

    Cheetah the cat was mad.

    Thanks for the prompt!

  3. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Hey, Neighbor Girl! So glad to see you here today. I love your idea! Cheetah certainly does look unhappy about having her paws held – what 8 year old would want to be seen in public that way? 🙂 Thanks for joining the Short & Sweet fun!

  4. Jill Proctor says:

    “It's only my first day of school and the principal has already called my parents to escort me off campus.” 😦

  5. Monette Pangan says:

    Marmalade isn't looking forward to the first day of school. She's not too happy about being left there by her parents. She's not thrilled about missing morning cartoons. Most of all, she's not looking forward to having to tell everyone what her name is.

    Why oh why was she named after her Papa's favorite snack? Then again, it's better than being named Toast.

    Thanks for this Susannah! I enjoyed it–also reminded me to update my own blog! =)

  6. Mary Flynn says:

    Tuffy just hates having to go to the vet. Mom and Dad always say “its for your own good.” Really, they should try getting those crummy allergy shots every month.

  7. Nana Gaye says:

    Seven year Fifi has been laying awake all night. Her mummy gave her a disprin for the nasty tooth ache. Straight after breakfast FIfi's parents decided the best thing was a visit to the dentist. Fifi is not at all happy about this.

  8. Vivian Kirkfield says:

    Julie RZ is a super talented illustrator!!! Love this pic.:)

    Butterball is always in trouble. Now she's been caught red-handed with her paws in the catnip jar. What tall-tale is she about to spin?

  9. Patricia Tilton says:

    “Okay I know it's Halloween, but do I really have to wear this kitty get-up to school and have my parents wear copy-cat costumes too?

  10. Pamela Courtney says:

    Six year old Precious Uston does not like her name. “It's original.
    Just like you.” purrs Mommy. “You're our precious princess.” meows Dad. Precious had to admit, she smiled, but only a little when Daddy
    called her his precious princess. So, she at least tolerated the name
    Precious, but only a little. But a last name beginning with the letter “U?” To top it off, she had changed over the summer. Precious now had
    her mother's golden color on the front and her father's black and white
    color on her back. When she walked into the her first grade classroom, one of the kids yelled, “PeeYuu! Here Precious, the Calico Skunk!”

    “I wanna go home, NOW!” demanded Precious.

  11. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    What a great beginning, Pam! You are the queen of great beginnings! You always post these wonderful responses to the Short & Sweets. And by gum! One of these days I'm going to get the whole story out of you! 🙂


  12. Clarbojahn says:

    Paws hated his paws held. Especially by his parents. He thought he was way too old be coddled like this at eight. But they insisted at traffic intersections.

    I Love that you named the lizard not lunch. thanks for the fun, Susanna! 🙂

  13. Pamela Courtney says:

    Haha, by gum! That “one of these days” times may be sooner than you think. And remember, you asked for it.

  14. Teresa Robeson says:

    Gah…I read this on Friday and wanted to play but my brain wasn't cooperating so I waited. And here it is, Sunday and my brain still isn't working.

    I love Julie's art though! Hope you are having a great weekend!

  15. Lauri Meyers says:

    I had to find the napkin I wrote this on Friday…so I'm late!

    Jasper's eyes got bigger with each step he climbed to the front door of Longfellow Elementary.

    He stopped as other kids ran through the door with friends. Slowly, Jasper reached up to his orange ear and gave it a rub. He thought of his Daddy, a brave tiger cat, and walked through the door with his whiskers at attention.

    The other kids jumped around the classroom looking at all the games and decorations. When Mrs. Mercer walked in, everyone got quiet except Jasper who was bouncing around dropping crayons everywhere. She stared down her nose at him. He reached slowly up to his white ear and gave it a rub. He thought of his Mommy, a gentle ragdoll cat, and sat calmly at his desk.

  16. Janet Johnson says:

    I am still suffering from vacation brain, but I LOVE that picture. I need to meet Julie, stat.
    I hope your sporadic posting means that you were busy enjoying this summer. 🙂

  17. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    I know it! Isn't Julie awesome? You should see her Napping Bunny – cutest thing ever 🙂 And yes, thank you, I have been enjoying summer but also VERY busy, so sporadic posting is a little of both 🙂


  18. Loni Edwards says:

    Hi Susanna! I have been MIA this summer preparing for our big move East. When I get settled in the next couple of weeks, I will email you a new updated badge. No problemo! Sorry my participation in your events has been very poor; I will be more active once my life becomes a bit more calm 🙂 . Take care, Loni

  19. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Oh, gosh, Loni! Don't worry at all! I've been so busy I never even emailed you and I don't which end is up and I'm not even moving! Good luck with the move! I hope you're going to end up close enough that we can meet in person one of these days 🙂

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