Saturday, June 21, 2008

Let's Start Writing our Story

There are several of you who indicated on another blog entry that you would like to help write a short story for children. I think this story may also be written more for adults and about children. I said I would write the opening paragraphs, name the main characters with some of their distinguishing characteristics, give several scenes so you each could choose one, and then write the final paragraph(s). Actually, choose two scenes you would like to write in order of preference, and then I'll assign them on a first-come-first-serve basis. Here goes.

Main character: Bear Smith. Ten years old. Somewhat of a klutz. Always looking for adventure. Mostly obedient to parents. Loves Jesus. Helps take care of his five-year-old sister. Sometime stutters. Physical description: brown eyes, short for his age, freckle-faced, light brown hair, big feet for his age, scar on left forearm, bony knees and elbows.

Sister: Summer Smith. Five years old. Likes to follow Bear around. Likes to climb and get stuck. Asks strange questions. Physical description: thin blond shoulder-length hair, brown eyes, stubby nose, skinny.

Bear's best friend: Tommy Valdez. Ten years old. Hispanic. Good at sports. Also likes adventure. Parents don't pay him much attention. Physical description: black hair, dark brown eyes, very clear skin, scar on forehead, tall.

Bear's enemy: Greggie Ross. Eleven years old. Bully. Thinks he's is charge of everything. Steals. Calls names. Very tender toward dogs. Physical description: shaggy blond hair, blue eyes, braces, big mouth, no neck, bigger than other kids his age.

Mom: Marie Smith. About 40 years old. Her mother passed away last summer. Cries often. Bakes wonderful desserts but burns most everything else. Loves her kids and worries. Teaches Sunday School. Loves God and husband. Physical: Short dark brown hair, brown eyes, 30 pounds overweight, 5'3" tall.

Dad: Scott Smith. About 40 years old. Works 60 hours a week for information technology business. Doesn't go to church but used to. Drives a car with problems. Sometimes is gruff with his children and wife. Physical: Blond hair nearly shaved, brown eyes, thin, tall--6'3".

Peripheral possible people: not main characters, but may be included with Bear's group or with Greggie's group. You name them--don't use too much description of them. Mother may have a friend of your choice.

Possible scenes:
1. How Bear got his name.
2. Greggie and his friends have an altercation with Bear and his friends.
3. Summer climbs a tree and is rescued or comforted by Bear.
4. Bear falls down a hole.
5. Bear meets a bear.
6. Lesson in Sunday School on "Love your enemies" and how that affects his relationship with Greggie.
7. Greggie, the hurt dog and Bear.
8. Tommy falls on his bicycle and has to go to hospital.
9. Bear and Tommie get lost in the woods.

I don't want to have all these incidents in the same short story, but each of you (Jen, Moms, Kay, Julie and Robin) will choose two to begin with, and then write 3-5+ paragraphs about the one you are assigned. Then we should have a good story. I know we will have different styles of writing and that's what we want. Write freely. Please post your part of the story as a comment on my blog. Then I will add it to the rest of the story.


THE ADVENTURES OF BEAR SMITH

It was summer and there wasn't anything to do. Bear had already gone to the library, watched television and cleaned his room. His little sister, Summer, was nagging him to take her to the park down the street. If mom would let him, that was better than doing nothing.

"M-M-Mom, can Summer and me go to the park?" he hollered to his mom who was in the kitchen.

In her most teacher-like voice she answered, "May Summer and I go to the park? And yes, you may go to the park. Take your watch. I don't want you to be gone more than an hour. Keep an eye on Summer at all times. Don't leave her alone. And Bear?"

"Yes, Mom," he sighed with impatience.

"Don't talk to strangers or go with anyone even if you know them. Do you understand?"

"Yes, Mom. We'll be b-b-back in an hour." Summer and Bear walked out the door and down the street. It was going to be a great day after all.

26 comments:

Momstheword said...

I'll take 3 and 4 if that's okay.

Julie said...

Just give me whatever you want me to have. :)

Momstheword said...

I didn't read it right. I will do one or the other of 3 and 4. Okay. I thought you meant take two. Duh.

Kay Day said...

2 and or 7.

QOTW said...

Okay, here's the plan. Please write about the following. I am giving you each two incidents to write about. If you only want one, just tell me which one you are doing.

Julie: 1 and 5
Kay: 2 and 7
Moms: 3 and 4
Jen and Robin, please choose from the other incidents.

Thanks. Start when you are ready.

Robin said...

I think I need # 6.

Momstheword said...

Scenario #3 can follow intro but can edit and put it somewhere else if you want



Summer was so excited to be going to the park with her big brother. She absolutely adored her brother. Bear, his name is Bear. To her he is brave and strong as a bear and she knows he would do anything for her. She would go anywhere with him because she wasn’t afraid. “Hey, Bear! Wait for me", she hollered.

Bear led the way to the park. He was thinking ahead. He’d get Summer busy playing on the little kid stuff and then he would go climb that big oak tree that sat behind the tennis court. He’d still be able to keep an eye on Summer and she could see him.

“Boy, I can see half the neighborhood from up here!” Bear said excitedly. “This would be a cool place to have a tree house.” Just as Bear was settling onto the biggest limb he could find, he looked down. “Oh, no!” he cried. He saw his little sister climbing up the tree. He started down toward her about the same time she began to scream, “Bear! Bear! I’m stuck. I can’t go up or down. Come help me now!”


Bear was afraid. He prayed, “Jesus, please keep my feet from getting t-t-tangled up.
P-p-please don’t let me fall.”

Bear continued to climb down slowly. He didn’t want to scare Summer even more as she was already near tears. He reached her and grabbed her by the arm. He then carefully worked his way around her, concentrating on keeping control of his big feet, and then he settled himself on the next big limb below. “Take hold of my hand, Summer. Let go, I’ll keep you safe”, he coaxed quietly. She cautiously reached down to take his hand. He talked her down onto the limb where he stood with his legs braced. “You know, Summer. This is not exactly the f-f-first t-t-time you’ve gotten s-s-stuck in a tree!” She hung her head and answered him, “I know Bear, but I love to climb trees. Thanks for helping me down.”

Robin said...

I'm not sure I did what you wanted...but... here it is...

6. Lesson in Sunday School on "Love your enemies" and how that affects his relationship with Greggie.


After a rough week dealing with multiple frustrations from Greggie, Bear didn’t feel like listening when his Sunday school teacher started talking about loving enemies and forgiveness. It was the last thing on his mind to even consider caring about Greggie after all he’d done to hurt him over the years, but Bear was a good boy who really wanted to live for Jesus, so he listened in spite of himself.

Mrs. Johnson told the class, “There will be times when people do things that cause you pain, but we need to follow the example of Jesus and forgive them and love them anyhow.”

Cindy interrupted to share an example, “My little brother sometimes does things to annoy me, but mom told me that he would stop if I included him more when I play. And you know what it works!”

Mrs. Johnson thanked Cindy and continued, “In Mark 11:25 Jesus said, ‘And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.’ The final bell rang and the students began preparing to find their parents and Miss Johnson called order and closed in prayer.

Bear sat in his chair as the other children scurried off. He was troubled by the verse Miss Johnson shared and knew that he needed to forgive Greggie because Jesus forgave him, but he didn’t know what to do. Mr. Johnson appeared at the classroom door to greet his wife and noticed that Bear looked sad so he asked Bear if he needed to talk. Bear shook his head while a tear escaped down his cheek. Mr. J put his hand and Bear’s shoulder and led him to a quiet corner to talk.

Bear shared, “Greggie picks on me all the time and I really want to get him back, but today Mrs. Johnson told us that we have to forgive our enemies because Jesus forgave us. It makes sense, but I don’t see how I can do it.”

Mr. J talked with Bear during the church service upstairs. Mr. J said, “Bear there are times when people hurt us because they have been hurt so much they don’t know any other way to act. Sometimes they just need to feel and know the love of Jesus and it will make all the difference.”

Finally Bear decided that he wanted to pray and ask Jesus to forgive his bad attitude toward Greggie. He prayed, “Lord, please help me to forgive Greggie when he does mean things to me and help me to show kindness to him instead. Help me to be the boy you want me to be even when its hard. Thank you Jesus, for loving and forgiving me and help me to love and forgive all I meet. Amen.”

Bear looked up and Mr. J and threw his arms around him and thanked him for listening and praying and ran upstairs to tell his mom the good news.

Robin said...

oops I forgot to have Bear stutter in my scene.

Kay Day said...

#2

“Have a nice trip” Greggy said as Bear tumbled over a tree root.
“See you next fall!” his friend Clyde joined in.
Their laughter burned in Bear’s ears. He didn’t trip, of course. That stupid jerk shoved him. Today Greggy had taken the money Bear had saved up for the candy store. Yesterday he had made Summer cry. Bear was getting sick of this.
Bear grabbed Tommy’ extended hand and pulled himself up. Tommy darted his eyes between Greggy and Bear and slowly backed away. “Let’s go man.”
“You chicken, Amigo? Don’t you want to show me what you’re made of, cucaracha?” Greggy sneered and then looked to his buddys for approval. They laughed on cue.
“Let’s go.” Tommy said again.
“You know, T-t-t-t-ommy, I don’t th-think I want to go.”
“T-t-t-t-t-t-t. Listen to da widdle baby try to talky walky.” Greggy strutted around in front of his friends.
“You are a big b-b-b-bully and I hate you!” Bear dove for Greggy and knocked him to the ground before he knew what he was doing. Greggy’s friends began yelling and Bear didn’t know if Tommy was even still around. He just hit Greggy as hard as he could until without explanation he was on the ground and Greggy was on top. He saw a glimpse of Tommy in the background just before his vision went red and his nose crunched. He screamed and kicked and felt Greggy pulling at him.
“That’s enough, boys!” He saw Mr. Binkly tug Greggy up. Bear struggled to his feet and cupped his bleeding nose with his hands.
Tommy looked pale, but he had stuck around. That’s what counted. Bear nodded at him to let him know he was ok.
A hand grasped his collar and he felt Mr. Binkly guide him to the office. Boy, he was in for it now. But he sure let that Greggy know something, didn’t he.

QOTW said...

You all did a wonderful job! I really enjoyed reading all the scenes. It was very interesting to me to find out what happens to this little boy. I'll put them all together soon.

Thanks a bunch!

Q

Julie said...

wait for mine!!!! I will do it ASAP

Momstheword said...

#4

Bear was finally able to sneak away from Summer for awhile. She had fallen asleep under the picnic table. He asked his mom if it were all right for him to go to the park by himself. She said okay but also added all her “be carefuls” and “don’ts” that he had heard every time. He agreed and started up the sidewalk.

“Boy, it’s cool to be here by myself”, he whispered. “I love S-S-Summer but s-s-sometimes I just want to be s-s-somewhere without her for a little while.”

It was fun playing on the swings by himself but impossible to play on the seesaw. He could run as fast as he wanted to make the merry-go-round go around, without having to worry about his little sister.

Bear got hot and decided to go sit under the big oak tree behind the tennis courts. He had just settled down when he saw a dog scurrying through the bushes on the other side of the park fence. He jumped up and climbed over the fence. He was pretty certain that the dog was holding up one of his legs so maybe it was injured. Bear plowed his way through the bushes. He suddenly felt himself falling. He didn’t have time to grab hold of any of the bushes to stop his fall. He landed hard and hit his head. When he sat up he saw that he was in a hole. He stood and realized that he couldn’t reach the top to pull himself up. He started yelling at the top of his lungs, “Help! Help! S-S-Somebody help me. I’m in a hole in the w-w-woods behind the tennis courts. Please come h-h-help me!”

Bear sat down and brushed the tears from his cheeks. He couldn’t be seen crying by anyone who might come to help him. He stood up and yelled again, only just a little bit. He thought to himself, “No one is going to hear me. No one was anywhere near in the park. Mom is going to get really scared when I don’t come home but she’ll come looking for me. She knows I’m at the park, well, kinda at the park.”

His head jerked up. He had heard a voice calling, “Where are you?” Oh boy, thought Bear, someone had heard him, and the voice sounded vaguely familiar.

Momstheword said...

maybe that last sentence needs a little editing as to person. The thought may need to be in quotes or something. Something is wrong. I didn't catch it until it posted.

Momstheword said...

maybe I shouldn't have left my hole story open-ended ??? Well, Q. you can fix it if you want to. I'm tired and can't get my ducks in a row obviously.

Jen said...

Count me out. I don't think I can do it. You all are genius'. Maybe next time. Can't wait to read the final product.

QOTW said...

I probably won't be able to work on the story until Sat. or Sun. All parts are good. Thanks. If there are any scenes left, feel free to write another part.

Kay Day said...

I'm working on my second one.
I misspelled Greggie's name in the first one I did, I think. You can fix it for me.

Kay Day said...

#7
Bear whistled as he biked down the street. It was a lovely morning and Summer was at a friend’s house, so he was free.
“Bear! Bear, come here.” Greggie’s voice called from somewhere.
Great. Just what he needed. He looked around to see where Greggie was.
“Over here, behind the bush. I need help.”
Bear dropped his bike and slowly walked in the direction of Greggie’s voice, looking around as he did. This could be an ambush. When he came to the other side of the bush he saw Greggie sitting on the ground with a giant dog. The dog’s head filled Greggie’s lap.
“What is that?”
“He’s a Mastiff. I’ve seen them in books. Isn’t he awesome?”
Bear nodded and took a step back.
“He’s gentle. These are good dogs. But he’s scared.” Greggie stroked the dog’s ear. “He’s hurt. I don’t know what happened, but he’s hurt.”
Bear widened his eyes as he saw blood on the dog’s back legs. “W-w-w-what are you going to do?”
“I need you to bring me some water. And do you have a wagon?”
“We can’t get him into a wagon. He must weigh five hundred pounds!” Bear retrieved his water bottle from his bike and handed it to Greggie.
“Do you have a better idea?”
“Does he have a collar? That kind of dog must belong to someone.”
“No, he doesn’t have one. He might belong to someone. I don’t know.”
“Then we need to get my parents. We need someone strong to help us.”
Greggy wiped his eyes quickly then put on a tough face. Bear pretended he didn’t see.
“I wanted to do this myself.” Greggie said. “I wanted to do something good all by myself.”
Bear looked at his feet. Greggie wanted to do something good? Seems like he had plenty of opportunities to try that.
“Go ahead. Get your dad. He’ll help I bet. I know mine won’t.”
Bear looked back as he peddled away and saw Greggie resting his head on the broad forehead of his new friend.

QOTW said...

Kay, your entry brought a little tear to my eye.

Kay Day said...

me, too.

Momstheword said...

I'm going to finish up the one about falling in the hole. I thought it could lead into the hurt dog one but it didn't. :)

Bear heard someone pushing bushes out of the way. He was a little scared it might be some of the boys who teased him so much. A little blond head of hair peeked over the edge of the hole. It was Summer! Bear cried out, "Oh Summer, I am so glad to see you. How did you find me?"

Summer said, "Mom told me that you went to the park and if I wanted to, I could join you, but 'just be careful and don't speak to any strangers'. So I came looking for you and came over to climb the tree and I heard you." She reached down and grabbed Bear's hand and held onto a bush with the other. Bear was able to climb up enough to get ahold of the bush and pull himself up.

"Oh, thank you, S-S-Summer", Bear said almost tearfully, "you s-s-saved my life. I'd like to go home now if you don't mind. B-B-By the way, why were you going to climb that tree by yourself?"

Momstheword said...

Everyone needs a problem student!

QOTW said...

You are not a problem student. There are some other family members who are!

Julie said...

Okay, do what you will. Forgive the spelling and grammer please.

Bear and Tommy were going to Scout Camp for the first time. They were the oldest boys to go to camp who had never been before, and some of the other campers started to tease them about it.
"Watch out for snaks!" cried one boy, "Yeah! Watch out for snakes and bats!" echoed his freckled face shadow.
"Don't pay any attention to them, Bear" Tommy said as they were setting up their tent, "they are just stupid anyway." Tommy added.
But Bear had never slept out in the real woods before, and the teasing boys did make him a little afraid of what might happen once it got dark. He thought those boys were gonna try to scare them during the night...he felt sure of it.
That night after everyone had settled down to sleep, Bear found that he just couldn't close his eyes. He really tried, but shadows and noises keept him awake.
All of a sudden, something thumped against the side of his tent. Bear grabbed his flashlight and decided that he was sick and tired of those other boys teasing him. So he slowly crawled to the tent flap and got ready to pounce. "Someone is gonna be suprised all right, but it won't be me" Bear thought.
Bear heard shuffling comming closer to the tent flap, and when he thought they were right on the other side he turned on his light, jumped out of the tent and gave a huge Indian war cry, all at the same time!
Bear's war cry went up five notches when he realized that he was looking into the fuzzy brown face of a "real" bear! The animal tripped over backwards, and ran out of camp to the safety of the trees...knocking over several tents on the way.
After the camp got setled back down and some calm had resumed, Tommy patted Bear on the back and said,"It's not your fault Bear, they never said to watch out for bears!"

Momstheword said...

Cute Jewels.