One morning when I was feeling a little fragile God suddenly began to show me a story to cheer me up. It was a simple story which made me laugh like a child. I typed the story and showed a variety of people who all enjoyed it for different reasons.
I had an idea that God intended me to write children’s stories, but though I waited on God in prayer it was about two years before another story came to me. When I write I often see the story unfolding in my mind with no clear idea of its ending. Sometimes the characters come to life with their own personalities without my efforts.
I decided to use animals as characters that were not the typical domestic or farm animals so that I could educate children a little.
For two of the stories the characters and plot were inspired by celebrities. I was wondering if that person were an animal would kind would they be?
One of the celebrities was Richard Hammond from the television program Top Gear. Richard loves motorcycles and nature. He also likes a creature called a Honey Badger. He stated once that he would be a Honey Badger if there was another life after this one. I decided to write a story about a Honey Badger who was in a motorcycle race in Africa where the animal is native. I knew of another African creature called a Rock Hyrax. They raced each other around a rough track, had an adventure and became friends.
The second celebrity was controversial journalist Julian Assange. Would he be a good guy or a bad guy? It may be hard to say, so I chose an animal with spots and white fur - a snow leopard. The leopard in the story was a journalist and the story fell into place.
The stories were printed into a small book which I illustrated myself. If you want to illustrate your work but can’t draw you could trace a picture, taking care not to breach copyright. Cartooning pens, pencils or crayons might work for the colouring and shading. Alternately you could use your own photography.
Children’s stories are a great opportunity for humour for adults as well as kids. For example, in one of my stories two hedgehogs were friends who hugged each other ‘very carefully’.
No theme had been planned for the collection of stories but it turned out to be ‘friendship’. All the stories had a positive ending while a couple also addressed more serious subjects like injury or death. They are aimed primarily at children who are recovering from illness or trauma, so nothing truly upsetting occurs in any of the stories.
If you are considering children’s story writing, your goals/themes could include:
. healing / ministering
If you have any ideas, write them down and let your imagination run wild creating a story around them.
I am an amateur writer and I have been involved in a writer’s group for the past four years. I have had devotionals and poems published in the anthologies, Penned from the Heart, Footprints magazine, The Mozzie, The Voices Project, and a travel article for the Sunday Mail. Poetica Christi is to publish a poem of mine in their upcoming anthology.
Many of my poems are cathartic or helpful to others relating to a background of abuse. As a Christian I believe God has healed me of trauma. I hope by writing to encourage other women to believe that healing is possible and that life is worth living. Overcoming the past has been a long journey for me.