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April 15, 2014

Memories of my First Writings

We're at the halfway point for the A to Z Challenge. Yay! Congratulations to everyone for getting this far. :)

M is for Memories of my First Writings

When we’re busy marketing our books, writing out current works-in-progress, blogging, tweeting and posting status updates, we often forget about how we started. Not the first book or short story we’ve published, but our beginnings, our pre-author days. It is important to remember when we first developed our love for writing and to even reexamine our early creations.

I am going to share my memories from my pre-author days with you. I hope you enjoy them!

The first story I ever wrote and illustrated was “The Kids and the Sea”. I believe I was about six-years-old. Below is the story for your amusement. I fixed the spelling errors to make it easier for you to read.

The Kids and the Sea:

One day two kids were doing nothing so they went outside to play.
So they went out to play so they walked for awhile.
And they walked and while they were walking they saw fish jumping. They go closer and closer and closer and they walked up to the sea. And they got on a boat and they sailed.
They threw rocks, they fished, they took a stick and got a fish, they took paddles and paddled, and they also swam.
And they sailed back home.
And they got off the boat.
And they walked back home.


In first grade, when I was seven, I wrote a more structured story in class. My favorite part of the story is right in the beginning: “One day, at night”. It gets me every time! And check out how I spelled “torturing”. Based on the ending, it’s safe to say I liked morbid stories even at a young age. HAHA!

There’s no title, but I’ve taken up calling it “The Bad Toy”.

The first full poem I wrote was at the age of nine. It is called, “Here in the Grass”. I wrote it while sitting on a little grass mound beside my childhood home, not a hill. And I didn’t see a single thing I wrote about. 

You’ll see what I mean:

“As I sit here in the grass,
I see butterflies dancing in the sky,
flies buzzing by and birds soaring up above.
A doe and fawn prance in the woods,
rabbits run in holes and cats jump by.

I sit here in the grass,
 on the very top of a hill,
watching the world around me and life happening.

In the stream before me,
fish glide in and out of rocks,
frogs lay lazily on lily pads,
and ducks float on the surface.

I am just a little kid,
sitting here in the grass,
but I know things are happening all around the world.

Cars drive by, planes fly high, and trains move on tracks,
kids play hide-and-seek and people walk hand-in-hand,
while I am just sitting here in the grass
looking at the world, looking at life and thinking about mine,
but I am just a little kid sitting here in the grass.”

Quite an imagination, eh?

When I was in tenth grade, I entered a contest run by the VFW. The topic was: What Freedom means to me. My essay won first place in my high school and third place in the district. Part of my award was a beautiful plaque which still hangs on my wall. For my essay, I literally rewrote the Declaration of Independence. Yes, I was ambitious. 

In tenth grade, I wrote articles for my school newspaper, but by far the greatest moment of my pre-author days happened when I was twelve. I started writing a series of books and I still have all the notebooks. It was this series that deepened my passion for writing. You can read more about that here: Catching a Spark

Image by Chrys Fey.

Thank you for taking this memory trip with me. I hope you had fun!

SHARE: Your memories from your pre-author days. I’d love to hear them!


Julie Flanders said...

How fun. You were a talented kid! The bad toy is actually super creepy.
Happy Halfway Day.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I think "The Bad Toy" needs a sequel. It reminds me of all those horror movie franchises where the monster/killer/ghost goes off to "torcher" another group of people. :)

Madeline @ The Shellshank Redemption
Minion, Capt. Alex's Ninja Minion Army
The 2014 Blogging from A-Z Challenge

Tara Tyler said...

so fun to go back in time and remember! and so creative you were! (still are!)
i enjoyed every word and pic =)
happy m day!

kjmckendry said...

So cute, it's always fun to go back and look at our young writings. Thanks for sharing.

Chrys Fey said...

The funny thing is I didn't think the bad toy was creepy at all as a kid. haha

Happy Halfway Day, Julie! :D

Crystal Collier said...

Mm. I don't have the first book I wrote anymore. I can picture it in my head, illustrations and all, but it was about elephant kids who were figuring out the perfect surprise for Father's Day. Most of my early pictures told stories though, and became more and more complicated the longer I spent on them. I loved working out the details and the subtle stories behind the main story. I still do.

Those were some cute stories, Fey.

True Heroes from A to Z

Chrys Fey said...

A sequel to "The Bad Toy"? Hmm. That is a thought. ;) I wish I could tell you how I got the idea for the bad toy going off to "torcher" another family, but I was so young that I don't remember.

Chrys Fey said...

It is a lot of fun! :D

Happy M Day, Tara!

Chrys Fey said...

It is! Every once in a great while I look at these stories and it reminds me of how much I love writing. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Elephant kids? That sounds good! I once had a big picture book that I was creating and I could tell full stories based on each picture, but I don't have it anymore. I wish I did though. I remember some of the pictures and they were pretty good.

Thank you, Crystal! :)

River Fairchild said...

I'm reeling at your comment about learning the computer in first grade. LOL! How fast time changes. I learned to type in high school on a manual typewriter...
I wrote a poem with pictures when I was seven for a valentine's day card to a boy I had a crush on. Never gave it to him and I think I still have it somewhere!
Methinks you were destined to be a thriller writer with that "Bad Toy."

Chrys Fey said...

Aw! The story of your unsent Valentine's card is so sweet. I can picture that as a story. :)

Thriller writer is what I'm aiming for, so thank you!!!! :D

David P. King said...

Very cool. I think my first story was a kid digging in his backyard, falling through a hole, and finds a whole nation of underground people. I need to find where I put that thing ... :)

Kyra Lennon said...

Cool stuff! I really wish I still had all the old stories I wrote as a kid. Sadly, they are long gone now. :(

Sarah Foster said...

Ha, the ending to "The Bad Toy" is fantastic! This makes me want to share the first story I wrote when I was 8. Great stuff!

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you!

Your first story sounds great. A nation of underground people? You do need to find it and make something of it, because that's a cool concept. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I moved A LOT when I was a teenager and lost a lot of things during that time that I still wish I had, but I was lucky (and smart) enough to keep these papers tucked away.

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks! :D I think you should share your first story. It's amazing to read our first creations and to pass them on. :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Hang on to those old stories - you never know when one will become your next book.
Is torchering torturing with flames? Because that works also.

Andrew Leon said...

Maybe he was torturing them by torching them?

Chrys Fey said...

I'll always keep them. :)

Torchering could very well be torturing with flames. lol

Chrys Fey said...


Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

You really showed your talent early. I have none of my early writing saved but I made sure to save my children's early efforts.

Carrie-Anne said...

I wrote my first book at four, I and a Sunhat, in yellow marker, on small pages of my father's work stationary. I believe it was from one of the computer-based companies he worked for at the time, 1984. Hopefully my parents still have that book around somewhere, since it wasn't thrown out with all my other early picture books and novelettes when we left New York in August 1996. The book consists of a person and a sunhat engaged in opposites, like Up/Down, Dark/Light, and Right/Left.

Some of my picture books and stories were also written/drawn on dot matrix printer paper, because I really am that old, and because my family's had a computer since Mac's first year.

Unknown said...

Wow! I remember vaguely some stories I wrote when I was younger.
My favorite that I can remember was titled The Man With The Golden Nose.(yes he did have a gold nose) It would be nice to have kept all of them.

Sophie Duncan said...

Great collection. I don't have much of the writing from before I was about 11, and I don't have any of the stuff I wrote at senior school either, but I do have swathes of stuff from my teens :D I was always a prose writer, not poetry, but the only thing I can say about my early stuff if that I'm glad the internet didn't exist when I wrote it ;P
Sophie's Thoughts & Fumbles - A to Z Ghosts
Fantasy Boys XXX - A to Z Drabblerotic

Nicki Elson said...

"but to a different girl and boy this time" -- that just cracks me up for some reason.

That poem is fantastic---you really have had the knack for this writing thing for a long time. I will have to go digging through mounds of memorabilia to find anything I did pre-writer. Not sure I want to find it...

Chrys Fey said...

It's a good thing you saved your children's work. I would do the same. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Four? Wow! You were advanced! :D The book sounds lovely. Hopefully your parents do have it because it would be a real treasure.

Chrys Fey said...

A golden nose? Well, of course you wrote that as a child! wouldn't have expected anything else. ;)

Chrys Fey said...

I have some essays I wrote when I was in high school, but one book that I made in fourth grade that was bound and was about a tornado I sadly don't have anymore and I wish I did because I did some good illustrations for that.

Chrys Fey said...

The whole story cracks me up. But I'm glad to make you laugh, Nicki. :)

You need to find your early writings. You may be embarrassed but it's worth it. ;)

Lisa Thomson said...

Very sweet poem and stories, Chrys! I love the "One day, at night", so cute. My first story was about a little girl, her friends and a horse they used to visit and feed apples. I can't remember the name of it, but I was so in love with horses at the time. I was probably 11. I also wrote a poem in College I was very proud of and probably still have it somewhere. :)

Kimberly said...

These are so great! I love that you have all these. And I absolutely love the the bad toy one - it cracked me up! :) It must be fun to read back on all of your work - we moved around to much so nothing got saved of mine but I enjoy reading through my children's writings every once in awhile. :)

Donna Smith said...

I didn't write until high school. We weren't encouraged to write before that. I was more into illustrating before that. I remember a few Haiku and a set of three comparative pieces that I thought were pretty good, as did my teacher in high school. Then, in college, as part of an early Childhood class I had to write a story and illustrate it for young children. It was "Gilly Grows Up", about a fish who turned colors, and involved an oil slick. My professor liked it - I think that's when I began wondering if I could actually do this someday. And then...lots of life happened.
Donna Smith
The A-to-Z Challenge
Mainely Write

Yanting Gueh said...

Wow, I don't think I could've written anything close to this level when I was six, or seven. And it's sweet that you've kept all of these. That toy story was scary given that you had written it at such a young age! I love that 'One day, at night' too. My first piece of writing (or attempt at it) was a western. I'd just come up with the setting, a town called Dusty Rose or something. It was so corny I threw it away. But of course, I've saved some in my memories, enough for me to perhaps write that story out one day.

J.H. Moncrieff said...

It's always fun to go back in time. We seem to have similar tastes. When I was five, I wrote a series of picture books about a family of fish that lived in terror of bear who stalked them under the ocean. (Obviously a very talented, water-breathing bear.)

And when I was in Grade Four, one of my first stories was published in the local newspaper. I'd just learned the word devour, so it was about a vampire who ran around devouring everyone. I'm surprised to this day that they printed it!

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, Lisa! "One day, at night" is also my favorite part. :)

I stupidly threw out a lot of poems and songs I wrote as a teen, but I'm lucky that I kept some of them -especially these first works. I also loved horses when I was a kid, but I was scared to get near them. lol

Chrys Fey said...

The Bad Toy seems to be the popular story. :D

I moved around a lot too. As a teen, I moved about ten times and I did end up throwing out a lot of things from paper to items that I still wish I had today, but I was smart enough to hold onto these. :)

Chrys Fey said...

That's sad to me that you weren't encouraged to write. As a child, I wouldn't have survived without writing.

"Gilly Grows Up" sounds really good. An oil spill is definitely something kids should learn about and how it damages ocean life. I still can't forget the images from the BP oil spill.

Chrys Fey said...

Dusty Rose is a lovely name for a western town. I've definitely had my share of corny story ideas, but they have inspired other stories, so I'm glad you have some memories of this western story for future use. :)

Chrys Fey said...

A water-breathing bear is truly frightening! And unique. ;)

I would have been beyond the moon if one of my stories had been in the local newspaper, even if it was a vampire devouring everyone. The closest I got was a poem in my schools newsletter. Plus, a couple of articles in my high schools newsletter, but no one of read them lol