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by Erik A.K.A. This Kid Reviews Books

Hi there! My name is Erik. I am nine years old (but this month I will be the big 10)! I have a blog ( where I review books, talk about reading and other book-related things. First of all, I’d like to thank Ms. Lazar for inviting me to be a guest blogger (she said she wanted a kid’s perspective, so HERE I AM) for PiBoIdMo 2011 and to write what I have learned this month by reading the posts each day. It has been a great month, hasn’t it? I have learned so much from not just the awesome guest bloggers but also by reading the comments of everyone that left one!

I don’t think I will ever see a picture book the same way! Picture books look like they are easy to write, but I now can see how much work and time it takes to put just ONE idea together into a book. One of the coolest things I learned was that adult writers really want to think like kids and want to know how kids see the world. I wonder how old we are when we stop thinking like kids? I actually think a lot of adults still think like kids but won’t admit it!

I like how the guest bloggers say how they get inspirations from the world around them. Things as simple as listening to kids talk (PiBoIdMo Day 23: Laura Murray Goes for the Giggle) or seeing things like kids see them (PiBoIdMo Day 15: Liz Garton Scanlon Sees Things Differently). I really liked the quote Wendy Martin used in the Day 19 post -“Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don’t see any.” ~ Orson Scott Card

The quote really made me think. When my mom was driving me home from school today I looked out my window looking for what might be a good idea for a book and I think I noticed things that maybe I wouldn’t have before; like the kids riding skateboards on the sidewalk, a family going into a pizza place or a mom driving a mini-van full of kids. Have you noticed something in the world around you that you haven’t before this month?

I really liked the posts by illustrators that appeared this month too! It was really neat to see how illustrators get inspired by something like a doodle (PiBoIdMo Day 7: Doodle with Abandon Like Debbie Ridpath Ohi) or a kids drawing (PiBoIdMo Day 28: Aaron Zenz and “Friends”) for examples.

It’s really cool how all the authors participating in PiBoIdMo really work with each other, support each other and help each other discover new ideas or new ways of looking at things. My September 27th, 2011 post on my blog was titled “Children’s Book Authors are the Nicest People on Earth (and maybe other planets too)!” I really think that. I could tell that everyone here is super nice!

I really learned a lot about the “business” of writing books. Agents, marketing, editors, publishers, submissions, rejections…I’ve heard these words before but I never really knew how they fit into writing a book. It seems like a very complicated process!

I did come up with 30 ideas this month but I don’t think that all of them are really great—like my idea of “The Friendly Tornado” where a tornado helps people build houses rather than knock them down but my mom pointed out to me that small children won’t see tornados as so friendly and will probably be terrified of it. I see now that she has a point ☺.

I do think I came up with some good ideas too. Like “When the Lights Go Out.” It will be a story of how a family starts to talk, play games and read with each other when the lights go out in a storm and they can’t watch TV or go on the computer (this actually happened to us, HEY I WAS INSIPRED).

I really learned a lot this month and I thank all of you for letting me be part of this. Mostly I am really thankful that all you authors and illustrators that take your time and hard work and try to make books for kids like me. I love stories. I will always read the stories you tell and I hope to read your book when it is published!

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