A warm welcome to author and editor, Penny Lockwood, who tells us the inspiration behind her charming picture book, Boo’s Bad Day.
Rosemary, thanks for hosting me. At the end of the tour, I will pick out one commenter’s name and send an autographed copy of Boo’s Bad Day to a United States address only. If the name I pick is someone who lives outside the U.S., I will send a PDF copy of the book. So remember, readers, be sure to leave contact information when you comment!
If your readers missed yesterday’s post, they can catch up at http://childrensandteensbookconnection.wordpress.com/. Tomorrow, I’ll be visiting with http://www.dreamseekeradventures.com/blog.
Boo’s Bad Day
Boo sneaks out of the house and discovers that freedom by himself can be scary.
Boo is a very bored kitten. When Timmy and his mom return home, Boo sneaks out of the house. Boo is frightened by the noises of the big world outside of the safety of his warm home. When Timmy coaxes Boo back into the house, Boo realizes some places are safe and some are not.
Inspiration behind the Story
What inspired me to write Boo’s Bad Day? My grandchildren, of course!
When I first started writing professionally, my children were in grade school and middle school, so my first novel was a middle grade reader. Now those children are adults and parents of their own children, so I look to my grandchildren for inspiration.
Over the years, I have written about what is important in my life. My nonfiction has been in the areas of parenting, teen self-help, and writing. My fiction was written either for my children’s age group or adults. As my children grew older, my stories ended up being geared more for teens.
Now, with a five-year-old granddaughter and a twenty-one-month-old grandson, I’m more interested in writing picture books and early readers, as well as continuing to write for adults.
The actual story for Boo is based upon a real adventure our own black teenage cat endured several years ago. At the time, we had several cats, and they were all inside/outside cats.
Boo had gone outside in the morning. It was winter, and the day was cold and overcast. Before evening, an ice storm came up, and Boo didn’t come inside. We called and called, but he didn’t seem to be anywhere nearby. We assumed he had found a dry spot in a neighbor’s barn. The next morning, it was still freezing, but no Boo. We called again and heard his meow. We searched until we found him high up in a fir tree. My husband got out his tallest ladder and tried to reach him but couldn’t. Poor little Boo. His meows became sadder and weaker as time wore on.
Finally, a friend, who was a bit taller than my husband, came to our home. He was a construction worker, used to climbing on tall ladders. He stood on the topmost rung of a 50-foot ladder and was just barely able to reach Boo. He grabbed him and got him down. Once we got Boo into the house, the poor kitty snuggled by the woodstove for at least a week!
Since my grandson loves kitties so much, I knew I had to write a kitty story, and Boo’s story was a good one to tell. Boo’s Bad Day isn’t quite as traumatic as what actually happed to our kitty, but Boo does have some fearful adventures on his own. This gives parents something to talk about as they read with their young children.
Penny Lockwood has published more than 100 articles, 75 stories, a chapbook, and her stories have been included in two anthologies. She writes for both adults and children. Her fiction has appeared in numerous genre and children’s publications, and non‑fiction work has appeared in a variety of writing, parenting, and young adult print magazines and on line publications. She edits for MuseItUp Publishing. You can find out more about Penny on her website and blog. Connect with Penny on Facebook and Twitter: @PennyEhrenkranz
Penny has recently released Boo’s Bad Day with 4RV Publishing and has three other children’s books under contract with them: Ghost for Rent, Ghost for Lunch, and Many Colored Coats. She has three romances published by MuseItUp Publishing: Love Delivery, Lady in Waiting, and Mirror, Mirror. Her short story collection, A Past and A Future, is available through Sam’s Dot Publishing and Smashwords.