Hi everyone, Odd Sock here!
OK, so my title for today's blog might be a slight exaggeration.... Our new YouTube video does include the whole of the Top of the Wardrobe Gang, and it also features quite a few MONSTERS from our latest book!
I did help out a lot in making the video, though, and I'm quite proud of that. Click on the link below to check it out on YouTube. We hope it will make you smile!
Despite a busy week doing "book things", I did manage to help hold the ropes while out climbing one evening...
...once I'd managed to get myself unravelled from them!
I also enjoyed scrambling up and down some of the rocks myself...
...checking out the undergrowth for tigers...
...and even watching a beautiful sunset!
I was very excited to get this lovely bookmark from my 3 bear friends in Whitby!
I wanted to make "something" special to thank them for my yummy Easter choccies, so last week I did a bit of sewing...
...and I made my sock cousin, Snowy Oliver Sock! (Heehee...S.O.S.)
I popped him in the post, and he is now very happily living with them in Whitby!
I know this is a bit naughty to show, but it is very funny, so I'm hoping Melinda won't notice! I asked my friends to try one of their "Build-a-bear" outfits on Snowy, to see if they might fit me too....it looks like we are a bit too well stuffed! (I don't think Snowy was very happy about being asked to try a girl's dress on, so...sorry Snowy.)
Well, our FREE 3 day KINDLE BOOK PROMOTION starts tomorrow! I hope lots of people will download our Monster book...
Bye for now, Love Odd Sock xxx
Hi everyone, Odd Sock here!
We just wanted to let you know that we have all learnt lots about writing poems over the last week!
We are well into our second week of Rhyming lessons from the "RhyPiBoMo" event now! We are busy everyday reading rhyming picture books, writing different types of poems, reviewing our old poems with fresh eyes, and trying to implement new ideas into our first attempt at a rhyming Picture Book manuscript (which we plan to hand in for "critiquing" in a couple of weeks!)
We are finding all our new knowledge very exciting, but also a bit overwhelming and confusing at the moment. I thought I'd share with you a little rhyme that Melinda has just written, which pretty much sums up how we are all feeling right now!
Confusion...(An Acatalectic Iambic Tetrameter!) - / - / - / - /
The perfect rhyming picture book
Is getting my poor brain quite shook!
Don't drop a beat or mix your feet,
But do not endlessly repeat?
Each day I hope to understand,
Though, so far, things don't run as planned.
Perhaps tomorrow, or the next,
I'll master rhythmic sense from text!
Hi everyone! As chief writer in the Top of the Wardrobe Gang, I wanted to post today. We have just started the RhyPiBoMo 2014 Challenge today, and we are all very excited!
Above is a link to our first lesson about writing Children's Picture Books in rhyme from Angie's blog. We've all been thinking very carefully about why we want to write in rhyme, and have decided that our main reason is that we have lots of FUN doing so!
We have just finished writing a very long poem today, for that part of the challenge. (Though we did start this one yesterday. We hope that doesn't matter!)
We've also met the 7 people in our Rhyming critique group now. We are so excited about that too.
Bye for now, Love Burton xx
Hi everyone, Odd Sock here!
Sorry we've not been very good at writing our blog recently. I just wanted to let you know that we have all been keeping busy - with writing rhymes, drawing pictures, and playing with Billy!
It is St. Patrick's Day tomorrow, so today we have been making a green hat and ginger leprechaun beard for Billy to wear for school! (We are hoping he will win the class competition for the best costume, and bring home some sweets for us all to share!)
Last week we had fun writing something called a "Fractured Fairytale" in rhyme. We'd not heard of them before, but, apparently these are traditional fairytales in which you can change the story round a bit to add your own twists. We will publish our final rhyme here in a few days, but it's secret until then! (We are entering it into a competition when we post it.)
Today Melinda has also signed us up to participate in the above. RhyPiBoMo is short for "Rhyming Picture Book Month", and we will be very busy in April trying to keep up with daily lessons in writing rhyme, and trying to complete everything in the below pledge! We are all really looking forward to this, and think it will be great fun!
Bye for now...I need to go and help finish off Billy's beard!
Hi everyone! Odd Sock here!
It seems a long time since our last post, and we've been up to many things since then, so I don't know where to start!
Having shown you a picture of Bert, our "baby" troll, I'd better tell you that he is doing well, and that he thankfully continues to stay vegetarian! As you can see, he's grown VERY quickly in the few weeks that he has been with us! He is now about the same size as his late mother, so we are hoping that he will not grow much more! He seems to have a wicked sense of humour, and likes teasing us all a lot, but he is quite gentle really. Certainly not nasty and "evil", as humans seem to expect all poor trolls to be.
Moving on, I should also mention that we uploaded our "Monster Poems for Monstrous Kids" book to iBooks yesterday. We will keep you posted about when it is cleared and becomes "live" on iBooks! We decided to just launch the text version first, to see how sales go before adding an audio version too. (We have purchased a proper microphone, so hope to improve the sound quality of the audio version with it. This will give us further chances to laugh at Melinda doing the recordings!)
Over the last week, Melinda has also tried out the newish Amazon "Comic Creator" software, to convert our last poem book ("Our Poems for Kids") so that it can be downloaded from Amazon. Sadly, the large file size means that Amazon refuse to sell the book for less than USD$2.99. We think that is too expensive, but have, so far, managed to get the Amazon.co.uk site to "price match" the book on iBooks to make it FREE. We hope this Kindle version will eventually become free worldwide, but unfortunately cannot control Amazon's price matching decisions.
In summary, we don't really like Amazon much at the moment, and find everything to do with them very confusing!
We all feel very sorry for the poor people in the South of England, who have been living with terrible flooding problems for months now. Yesterday we had yet another "mini flood" disaster here, with Melinda knocking over a large glass of water. As seen above, flood victims were dried out and taken to the Under-Radiator Evacuation Point. Melinda then sorted out less important flood water issues. We can thankfully report that everyone's stuffing appears to have dried out nicely now. We are thinking about implementing "flood-containment" measures, possibly involving a washing-up bowl.
And, finally, we have AT LAST added some printable colouring-in pictures to our website. Please check out the "Fun Things to do!" section.
Think that's everything for now! Sending out hugs and smiles to you all!
From the Top of the Wardrobe Gang! xxxxxx
Yes, we've finally finished all our drawings, and our poems have been edited, critiqued, re-edited, and read through a zillion times... So we think it is about time we declared our next book FINISHED and READY TO LAUNCH!
We've decided to upload two versions of the book to the Apple iBookstore, one will include audio files. So you just click on a speaker icon for each poem verse, and you get to hear Melinda reading it out for you! We hope that Melinda will be able to borrow a Mac PC to upload both books on Saturday. Then we will have to wait for Apple to "process" them. We'll keep you posted on progress!
PD here now! Yes, we've had lots of fun and we've been laughing a lot today! First we had to get Melinda to read the poem verses out while we recorded them, but we all kept pulling funny faces at her, so she kept laughing or getting the words wrong!
Then, just when we'd finished rolling on the floor laughing at the audio recordings, Bert decided to make his first escape from his washing basket!
We knew that moment was getting very near, as Bert is pretty big now (twice the size of poor Odd Sock, who is supposed to be looking after him!) In fact Bert has been desperately trying to escape from his basket for the last couple of days!
Once out, Bert started tearing round the room like a crazy troll! Eventually we managed to calm him down and to get him to sit down. (I think he'd just worn himself out by that point.) TT and I couldn't help laughing at the sight of poor Odd chasing him around, trying to corner him! We think that Odd is now a lot more worn out than Bert. She hasn't even been on Twitter yet tonight, to say hello to her friends there!
We'd better go now, it's our bedtime here in the UK. Night night everyone!
Billy and I watched the start of the New Zealand against England rugby match before we went to the park today.
The New Zealand team all do this really funny war-like dance at the start, called the Haka. They pull funny faces, stick their tongues out, slap themselves, and stamp their feet, while making war-like grunting sounds! We all thought it was hilarious!
Billy had his thick winter coat on in the park (we've got no snow yet, unlike some parts of the UK, but it's getting pretty cold now). He then started playing about near the rugby posts in the park, pretending to do his own Haka. I said he was doing the Haka in his parka, and that was it, we both couldn't stop laughing!
(Unfortunately we ended up rolling around on the grass laughing for quite a while, and we got a bit too muddy. Billy's Mum was not very pleased about that, so no hot chocolate to drink when we got home today...)
It's been a few days since our various book launches, and everyone in the Top of the Wardrobe Gang is starting to settle down now, after all the initial excitement (even PD Monkey!) So, we are starting to get back to our normal routines, and to tackling our normal everyday problems.
These are probably very similar to the daily problems faced by many other cuddly toys the world over.
We were all very sad last night, because Billy came home from school upset. Another little boy had been being nasty to him, and had left poor Billy feeling he was no good at anything. We tried to put Billy straight, and to tell him that we all loved him, that he was very good at lots of things, and that he shouldn't pay any attention to the nasty words being said by this nasty boy.
Billy will be home from school soon (it's gone 4pm here in the UK), so we are all hoping he'll be happier tonight.
Despite the cold wind, I wrapped myself in a warm blanket this afternoon, and sat under my favourite "thinking" tree at the end of the garden. I wrote down the following poem, while I was thinking about Billy, and wondering how he was getting on at school.
The Top of the Wardrobe Gang: Oscar Rabbit, PD Monkey, Odd Sock, Burton Bear, Terry Tiger (TT), Burton Bear; helped by Melinda Kinsman