Sunday, September 26, 2010

Latest WIP-The Twins of Er and Est

Earlier this week, I eluded to the fact that I've been writing up a storm lately. Well, one of the stories that I am currently working on is very near and dear to my heart. The story is called the The Twins of Er and Est. And the reasons that it is near and dear to me are many: 1. The two main characters of the story, Barry and Larry, are the actual names of my dad and Uncle Larry. 2. My Uncle Larry passed away two years ago-very young and so sad. And 3. Because I'm always looking for books that I can use in the classroom to teach certain skills. And, ofcourse, this book will illustrate the uses of the suffixes "er" and "est".

In many ways, this is your typical twins book.

In the beginning of the story, Barry and Larry are introduced as twins. And, ofcourse, they hate being the same. Been there. Done that. Yawn.

In the middle, the twins do find their differences. Again. Been there. Done that. Yawn.

The major difference with my twin book and other twin books, is that it's not just an opportunity to teach twins that they're special-And, honestly, I think they are. This book is special because it's also an opportunity for teachers to have a book that constantly uses "er" and "est".

And speaking as a teacher in the primary grades, I love using picture books to reinforce lessons. It's like killing multiple, imaginary birds with one stone. Not only am I teaching "er" and "est", but I'm also demonstrating fluency and modeling comprehension. And what can be better than that?

In short, this mansucript is a teacher's dream.(maybe tooting a little too much) It's fun. It's educational. And you get a lot of bang for your buck. And let's face it, teachers and parents don't have a lot of extra bucks just lying around these days.

So my question to you is this, do you just write what comes to you? Or, do you think about things like tying your stories into certain academic standards? Because believe me, that's where the sales are. Teachers and parents DO want entertaining books, but they also want their children to learn in the process. So get on the education express, people. It's a fun ride!(This message is supported by this aspiring writer mama/teacher.)


  1. I'm a YA writer; so, I'm not as concerned with educational use when I'm writing. But I am a teacher and love the sound of your twin book!

  2. Quinn,
    That makes sense. I don't see many teaching opportunities in YA. I guess you could teach a moral lesson, but not many people would keep reading long enough to find out the lesson. LOL

    Hey, funny coincidence, I that noticed you graduated from the University of DE. I'm actually from DE. Too funny. I guess it really IS a small world after all.

  3. I write non-fiction science picture books, and I'm thinking about another series that incorporates ecology, history, and geography, so yes, I guess I do consider the school market when I think about books. I don't start out that way... I get an idea that I like first, but then, after a while, I often find that there's a nice tie-in somewhere.

    Your work sounds really interesting. :)

  4. Hey Jessica! Found you from the pblitchat last night (I rarely participate due to time constraints,but always read the transcripts). I have been trying to write to standards lately too! I've written a manuscript that incorporates ordinal numbers and I have a WIP that deals with patterns. I think it is great to have picture books to use in the classroom. I think that is going to be my primary focus in writing for a while. Your book sounds great!

  5. Jessica,
    I like your idea. What grade do you teach? I have a couple ideas that are similar to yours, but not with er and est twins. How do you find time to write, blog, tweet, parent, AND TEACH?!