Friday, March 26, 2010

Flashback Friday: Daniel Pinkwater (and a suggestion)

Alright, I have a Flashback Friday this week, but before I get to it, I have a proposal...

How do you feel about a musical blogfest? I know a lot of people are inspired by music when they write. I'm thinking the fest would involve you either posting a scene inspired by a song (can be a brand-new scene or a scene from your WIP), or a scene that somehow involves music, or just post a scene from your WIP and the song that is on your WIP playlist that corresponds to it. You can post the actual MP3 or the lyrics. Thoughts? If there are more than two people on board (because that was the overwhelming response I got on Twitter when I tweeted the idea last night...I rule at life) then I'll create the link list and post tomorrow! I'm thinking later in April for the date so as not to run into Anne Riley's totally awesome murder scene blogfest on April 10, which you pretty much need to sign up for yesterday. So...April 21? (And don't worry, I'm really good at being annoying, so I'll give plenty of reminders.) 

And if you think this idea is really lame, you can just not respond at all and I can pretend like you never read this entry, k? K.

Alright, now it's time for FLASHBACK FRIDAY!!!! Flashback Friday is hosted by Jacki at Lovely Little Shelf. It's a chance for everyone to highlight one of their favorite books/authors from childhood. I don't participate every Friday, but lately I've been thinking about Daniel Pinkwater, and I wanted to share his awesomeness with all of you.

Daniel Pinkwater is the author of amazing titles like Lizard Music, The Worms of Kukumlima, The Snarkout Boys and the Avocado of Death (and the sequel, The Snarkout Boys and the Baconburg Horror), and The Hoboken Chicken Emergency. His books range from picture books to YA to adult novels, and all of them are witty and bizarre in a way that only Daniel Pinkwater can be.

My fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Driver, introduced me to him, and I will never forget how taken I was with him. I checked his books out of the library so much that librarians would comment on it. I identified with the misfits he wrote about and longed to join them on their crazy adventures. For my reading class, we even had to make a board game out of a book, and I chose The Worms of Kukumlima for the project. In fact, I'm pretty sure I wrote what can only be classified as fanfiction about Kukumlima; a short story about two girls who travel there and befriend the worms and end up living there for the rest of their lives.

Now that I'm all grown up (relatively speaking), I can listen to Daniel Pinkwater on NPR and feel really awesome. He also has some books for adults, one of which I've read and thought was pretty enjoyable. But nothing will ever compare to the joy I found discovering his books for the first time, sneaking out to the movies with his characters, going on African safaris, and more.

If you want to participate in Flashback Friday, visit Lovely Little Shelf and leave a link to your Flashback Friday post.


  1. How did I miss these?! They sound awesome.

  2. I think a musical blogest rocks. I might even have something already written that could work. :)

  3. That is an interesting idea. I'm glad you're at least going for after the 15th. There are 3 blogfests in the first 11 days of April.

    I create playlists for some of my books. Started that in 2008 when I managed to complete the nano challenge for the first time. Don't always listen to them when writing but they do help get into the mood/theme of the particular novel.

  4. Musical blogfest please!!! I love writing to music!

  5. umm yeah i think i could be down with a musical blogfest. there'd be so many options to work with so that could be fun. As long as you post reminders...otherwise i might forget...

  6. The first series of books that got me interested in reading, all the way back in second grade, was Nate the Great. You did ask for childhood favorites, right? :) For those who have never heard of Nate the Great, he is an eight year old detective who finds things for his friends and solves mysteries like Who's been tipping over Oliver's garbage can? and Where did my shopping list go?
    This is an awesome book series from a teaching perspective, too, and since that's what I've been focusing on, I have recently revisited the series, which has grown significantly since I stopped reading in 1989. (Fifth graders don't read Nate the Great; they need more challenging books like the Babysitter's Club). I checked them out of the library to bring to the students I am tutoring in the attempt to stimulate their motivation the same way I was driven to read by Nate’s adventures. (It worked, too!)
    Afterward, and even with the discovery of The Babysitter's Club, I did not have the fervor to read that I had for Nate the Great again until high school and Heather introducing me to The Enchanted Forest Chronicles (featured in her Feb 12 Flashback Friday).
    As far as a musical blog-fest – it sounds like a good idea. I wrote a short story in high school about a princess who was under a curse that could only be broken if the person who had the key to her magic locket could be found. It was loosely based on a Madonna song (yeah, I listened to Madonna in the 1990’s. Most girls did.)


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