Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Quentin and the Picnic // National Flash-Fiction Day

So the build up and celebration of National Flash-Fiction Day has begun in my glorious homeland of Northern Ireland - go "Like" it on Facebook here. I'll concede right now it's something I'm genuinely awful at. However, it just so happens I have a little children's book I've been playing about with for the past wee while, in between redrafting A Boy Named Hogg and writing The Unseen Trials of Amelia Black. So in the spirit of it all I'm going to put the whole thing in its current draft online for all to read along with a teaser illustration by the lovely Elissa Elwick.

If this ever sees the light of day as an actual children's book, there's a good chance some of the text will have changed and the illustrations would be much more expansive and hopefully present itself as a beautifully crafted wee book. For now though, if you have a little one curious, peering over the laptop/tablet screen, by all means sit them on your lap and entertain them with the jolly little tale of when a mouse, a robot boy made of tin and a kind, furry, monster, who's not really a monster called Quentin Muldoon went on a picnic...

There once was this monster,
This kind, furry, monster,
Who’s not quite a monster,
Named Quentin Muldoon.
And one day this monster,
This kind, furry, monster,
Who’s not quite a monster
Named Quentin Muldoon...
But that day, that monster,
Named Quentin
Was lost,
So lost it seemed,
He stepped right on a house!
And who lived in this house?
Who was it indeed?
It’s was Mouse having biscuits,
And drinking some tea.
But that Mouse with a house
Welcomed Quentin with glee,
He whispered, “Don’t panic.”
“I know where to be.”
They travelled far...
They travelled wide...
They travelled...thin?
They also travelled within...
And while travelling within,
They met Mouse’s friend,
A curious little thing...
A boy robot made of tin.
Nervously he asked, “Can I come too?”
“Of course!” cried the mouse.
“We have plenty for you!”
“But where should we go?” Quentin did ask.
“A beach,
Or a park or
A very large ark?”
“Best not,” Mouse said it was so.
“One’s rather busy, and one’s full of bark.
And since when was the last time,
Did you glance at an ark?”
“Well, what about this graveyard?” declared Quentin Muldoon
“But don’t it have ghosts and horrid ghouls too?”
“Don’t fear,” said Mouse. “They can’t hurt you!”
“Okay,” said the boy robot made of tin.
“I trust you more than my great granny’s bin.”
So that kind, furry, monster named Quentin Muldoon
And that Mouse with a house
And the boy robot made of tin
Sat in a peaceful graveyard
For their picnic din din!
What did they eat?
Oh, all sorts of treats!
Some cheese for Mouse,
Goats, Stilton and Brie.
Some oil for robot boy,
He drank mer-ri-ly.
And what about dear Quentin, you may well say...
He had marshmallows with chips,
And orange juice coloured blue.
Why blue you ask?
Frankly I haven’t a clue.
Then look what popped up,
A ghost and a ghoul.
They both said, “Hello,
Any ecto-plasmic gruel?”
“I dare say we don’t,” said Mouse with a sigh.
“But next time we visit we’ll be sure to say hi.”
Quentin brought out his watch,
And said “It’s time we must go.”
So they waved their waves, and gave good to their byes,
Mouse went to his house, and the tin boy went back within.
While Quentin Muldoon flew up into the air,
With a huge big grin!

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