I’m thrilled to share our first just 1 book feature, author guest post by Erica Perl!
And the icing on the cake is that Erica has offered to give away one signed copy of her book, Dotty, to a lucky teach mama reader. A signed copy! For one reader! Woo-hoo!
I’m over the moon excited to kick off the just 1 book post today with a post written by a woman I can now call my friend:
Erica Perl is an award-winning author and mother of two, who works for a ‘groudbreaking’ literacy-focused non-profit here in the DC area. Erica has won the Reuben Award and a writing fellowship from the Virginia Center of Creative Arts. She has presented numerous conferences and has conducted workshops for children and adults at libraries, schools, and bookstores around the country. She’s an all-around talented and totally cool person, in my humble opinion.
- just 1 book: author guest post
At the risk of being labeled a shameless self-promoter (too late!), please allow me to submit ‘just one book’ that is near and dear to my heart for the simple reason that it is my own story. The book is DOTTY and it is my most recent picture book, illustrated by the wonderful Julia Denos. I am also the author of other books, including Chicken Butt!, which no three-to-six year old boy has yet been able to resist. The girls love it too, I hasten to add, but the boys… well, it is a whole other thing entirely. But I digress. This is supposed to be ‘just one book’ and that book is NOT you-know-what (Chicken Butt!). That book is: Dotty.
I wrote Dotty because I wanted to tell the story of a girl and her imaginary friend. I was that girl and I had a pair of imaginary friends. Their names were Sahti and Dahti and they were twins but they were not the same age (I’ll pause while you adults snicker, but kids know why this was perfectly plausible and appealing). I had them for a long time, and they were a great source of comfort to me. Later, I added one more imaginary friend – a sheep – though this time I kept her private because in the time that had passed, I had learned that such things were babyish. Ida, the girl whose imaginary friend is Dotty, finds herself in this very situation, where she wants to put aside childish things but finds she’s not entirely ready. Ida desperately wants Dotty to leave, like everybody else’s imaginary friends, but Dotty has no interest in being anywhere but where she’s always been: with Ida.
I often describe Dotty as a book about the enduring power of friendship – Ida’s and Dotty’s – and imagination, and I say that because there is another relationship at the heart of Dotty. Ida’s teacher, Ms. Raymond, sees something of herself in Ida. And for this reason, she is able to share something about herself with Ida. Something that shows Ida that there is no rush to “grow up” and that maybe, just maybe, growing up doesn’t have to mean getting rid of your imagination and your sense of magic. I wanted to put this other kind of friendship – between teacher and student, or parent and child – in the book as a way of emphasizing how important I believe it is for adults to show children that their imaginations are alive and well. The fact that your blog embodies this spirit is one more reason I am thrilled to be hear, sharing Dotty with your readers… I know she will definitely be among friends here.
Thanks so much for inviting me over to share ‘just one book’. Please let New York friends I will be at Books of Wonder on Saturday, October 16th. I am a very interactive reader/presenter, so families with kids won’t be disappointed!
Thank you, Erica, for your kind words and for sharing your reason for writing Dotty. Having had an imaginary friend under this roof for quite some time, it’s nice to know how common it really is for kiddos!
Please check out Erica’s Events Page regularly to make sure you don’t miss her when she comes to your area, or feel free to contact her to request that she presents at your school or literacy event. Or just check out her blog because that way you can stay on top of everything Erica Perl-cool.
Do you want to win a signed copy of Dotty for your home library? For that favorite teacher or student in your life? Here’s how:
- Leave a comment here (along with your email address) explaining why Dotty holds a special spot in your heart. (Has an imaginary friend spent time in your house? Has a teacher made a special connection with you or your kiddos?)
- Visit Erica Perl’s site and share your favorite Erica Perl book.
For extra entries, you can do both. Just let me know! And please leave your email so I can contact you if you win.
Contest closes next Monday, 10/11/10 at midnight. Winner will be chosen by random.org.
Do you want to share a book that moved you? ‘Just 1 book’ guest writers are invited to share how one book moved him or her. Contact me ([email protected]) and I’ll give you the skinny on how you can share yours!