This is an excerpt of a rough draft of one of the stories I am writing for a series of childrens books. I have posted this in an attempt to gain feedback on my writing style, as I have never written for children before. The series is intended to be quintessentially British in it’s style, and it’s main influences are Enid Blyton, A.A. Milne and Beatrix Potter. I would really like any feedback in order for me to gauge how to improve.
I hope you enjoy.
A conversation on the Ridiculousness of Shoes-An excerpt from Gerty Meets a Thing
This is the story of the day that Gerty the Woodland Watcher met a Thing and got ever so confused and tried to understand the notion of shoes. It was around half way between afternoon mushroom crumpets and evening blackberry stew when Gerty came across the Thing. Gerty was going for his usual afternoon walk when without expectation Gerty stumbled upon a very peculiar looking Thing indeed. It sat alone on a tree stump with what Gerty could only begin to describe as signs of distress in its mannerisms, it had its face in its hands and grumpily grumbled to itself “It is hopeless, I am lost and am sure to have to spend the rest of my days living alone in this wretched wood!”
Of course, this remark was enough for Gerty, who was the warden of the woods to feel he must intervene. It was not often that Gerty felt the need to intrude or intervene (as he was a rather private fellow), but he was very disgruntled by the Thing thinking it fine to insult the wood, as Gerty had worries that this may have upset the wood (who was very sensitive indeed).
“Excuse me Thing! I do believe it very rude that you would intrude upon this lovely wood, and then insult it in the worst way you possibly could!” Gerty remarked “An apology would be rather welcome if I do say so myself.”
The Thing looked shocked, It stared at Gerty showing worry in it’s face “You’re an animal, surely you can’t think!” The Thing took note of Gerty and his odd appearance, he looked like a bear, but almost not like a bear. His fur was definitely yellow but then some may see it as brown or even sometimes an orange. He had a nose, a mouth, two pointy ears but what was most peculiar to the Thing was Gerty’s eyes “Is one of your eyes yellow and the other an odd pink?”
“I am shocked and awed that you continue to insult! I am Gerty the watcher of the wood.” Gerty explained in a rather matter of fact tone “Now explain your behaviour or I shall have to march you straight out of these woods right this instant!” Gerty was infuriated by the Things behaviour and furthermore he still hadn’t the faintest idea what or who or what the Thing was, only that it was an incredibly impolite Thing, though Gerty had not met a Thing before, so he could not tell if it was only a natural thing for a Thing to be impolite “And besides, what am I? What may I ask…are you?”
Peter gave Gerty a very concerned look “I do apologize Mr. Gerty sir! I am a human, a human boy in fact and my name is Peter. I never meant to offend, but you see I am lost and it is utterly hopeless. All I wanted to do was pick some flowers for my mother, but I strayed from the path, and have been wandering for hours and now I am here talking with you. And I have never seen anything like you before, so sir you must understand my confusion and behaviour. But marching me out of the wood would certainly make you my saviour!”
Gerty mulled this over for quite some time, trying to work out what exactly a Hummus or Humas was, and decided it was his duty to offer the best advice he knew on the topic of being lost “If you ever find yourself truly in The Heart of The Forest you will probably find that you will almost certainly not want to find yourself a way out. So perhaps feeling lost is not always a bad thing, because being found is not necessarily a good thing.”
Before Peter could reply out of bewilderment at Gerty’s unusual statement, Gerty had a sudden attack of absolute confusion, it seemed to him that today was clearly a confusing day and that it will most likely be stuck this way.
“What are those on your feet!?” He barked “However are you meant to know where you are in the forest if you cannot feel the forest between your toes?” Gerty asked bemused.
“Why they’re shoes Gerty, humans wear them to protect our feet!” replied Peter bemused by Gerty’s obvious bemusement.
Gerty gave Peter a stunned look as he decided to decide what to decide what his opinion was on this notion of shoes “Shoes? Shoes!!?? I’ve never heard anything more ridiculous! You hummus’s are very peculiar indeed.”
“Honestly Gerty. We’re not called Hummus’s, We are called human’s” Peter said slightly giddy about the thought of being mistaken for a dip for his crisps.
“Hummus’s, Humans, Shoes…It’s all new to me. I think I’m going to need to write this all down.” Gerty scrambled into his little rucksack made of leaves carefully sewn together by his good friend Migini the Native mouse for his birthday last summer, and pulled out a slightly sharpened twig and began writing in the air “So..you carry the E, multiply the X then minus the Hummus’s…and the the shoes, what do I do with the shoes? Ohhh it’s no use, I think i’m going to have to have a sit and have a think about this one!” Gerty never did manage to understand shoes, he also never could distinguish the difference between a Hummus and a Human. After some time of thinking, Gerty began to forget about what he was thinking about and began to think about food. He thought that if he was hungry then Peter must be hungry, so he had to help him with his hunger.
“I presume you eat?” Gerty questioned.
“I do, I do. And I haven’t eaten in quite some time and I am absolutely ravished.” Peter ‘s belly began to rumble as though trying to help Peter in his plight to get food.
“Well, I shall have to see about getting you fed then shan’t I!” Gerty said bent over Peter’s stomach as though he was replying to the stomach and not Peter. “But where shall we dine?” Gerty’s house was rather a far walk and he was ready to eat now and by the sounds of it so was Peter’s stomach. “AH! I know, Migini lives just around the corner, and she can make a wonderful stew.”