Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Writing Inside the Comfort Zone
It's funny how we gravitate toward simple pleasures in life; the things that bring us comfort and security, like your favorite PJs, a certain herbal tea, your favorite seat in the house or maybe a particular shade of lipstick. I suppose that's why I associate my desire to write for the middle grade market with a certain cozy factor.
My parents divorced when I was 6, which sent my whole world into a jumble of chaos and confusion. But it was in the pages of some great books that I found a sense of security. I loved when a book was so captivating and held my attention so much that it sort of grabbed me by the collar and pulled me into the pages to live among the characters! I loved and appreciated the escape element a good story provided, and I believe now, perhaps unconsciously, that is the basis for wanting to share that same feeling of security and of comfort with kids who are at an age where they're devouring great fiction like they're French fries!
I only wish I could remember the titles of the books I found so intriguing. Some were wonderful short stories packaged together in book form, just the right length for a kids' attention span. Others were chapter books I couldn't bring myself to dog-ear and close up just before bedtime. Either way, they took me out of my tumultuous world just for a little while and transformed me to a place of security and well-being. What a blessing it would be to give that back to kids today!