Sunday Post: Reflections…Do You Love Yours?

Jake at Time after Time has a Sunday Post Challenge and every week he provides a theme…this week’s theme is REFLECTIONS.

Look in the mirror.  Do you see your reflection?

The picture that you have in your mind’s eye may be quite different.

This reflection or self-image…who we are and how we look…forms in early childhood and is influenced in large part by how our parents act and react with us.

I’ve been taking part in a creative writing exercise for the past eight weeks.  Children’s author Susanna Leonard Hill organized “Summer Short & Sweets” and each week she provided writing prompts.  Last week she posted this beautiful illustration by gifted artist and picture book illustrator, Heather Newman, and asked us to think about a children’s story based on that picture.

Illustration copyright Heather Newman 2012 – Used by Permission



I’m going to share the story I wrote for the contest…and it ties in with the Sunday Post theme of Reflections…how we see ourselves and what happens when a person doesn’t have a positive self-image.

I hope you all enjoy it…I’d love to have your feedback and comments.

Working Title: Boot Camp at Old Dragons-Lair

Genre: Picture Book

Word Count: 240


The first day of boot camp at Old Dragons-Lair

The white witch decided to darken her hair.

So tired was she of her colorless locks

She lifted the red from the tail of the fox.


“Did you see that?” all the campers cried out.

“I’ll do as I please!” the witch said with a shout.

“I don’t like how I look…I’ll take what I wish

The tail of the dragon…the eyes of a fish.


“You can’t take from others”, the raven explained.

Your magical powers should be more restrained.

You’re leader of boot camp at Old Dragons-lair

You can’t create havoc and cause such a scare.


The black bird continued, “It’s what people do

That shows their real beauty…believe me, it’s true!”

And nodding her head, the witch waved her thin wand

Her hair began changing from red back to blonde.


The campers all gathered around the white witch

And loudly applauded the spell-binding switch.

She’d learned to treat others with love and with care

You don’t bully people at Old Dragons-lair!


The last day of boot camp at Old Dragons-lair

The campers took part in a Renaissance Fair

The white witch placed first in the costume parade

And raven won gold in the gaming arcade.


The campers were packed and excited to go

The sky was alight with a fiery glow

Each clambered to mount his own flying gazelle,

And said to the raven and witch,”Fond farewell!”

That’s it…what do you think?

We have one more month to get nominations to give 12 free copies of Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cookingto schools or other childcare facilities.  Nominate your child’s school in the Show Me How School Initiative by leaving a comment and telling us why you’d like them to have this book.  If you don’t have young children, but know people who do, please tell them about the free book their child’s school can receive!  Please tweet this or spread the word across any of your social media networks.  At the beginning of October we will use to choose 12 lucky schools.

Want more information about Jake’s Sunday Post?

About viviankirkfield

Writer for children - Reader forever Mom of 3, educator, author of SWEET DREAMS, SARAH (Creston Books, 2018), picture book junkie, lover of travel, hiking, cooking, playing Monopoly with my 8-year old grandson and fly-fishing with my husband.

Posted on September 2, 2012, in creative writing, self-esteem, Show Me How! School Initiative, Summer Short and Sweets, Sunday Post and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 61 Comments.

  1. Beautiful reflection.


  2. Catherine Johnson

    This is super, Vivian! Creative, rhythmic amd fun!


  3. Great rhythm, what a fun camp tale in verse. My favorite couplet:
    The white witch placed first in the costume parade
    And raven won gold in the gaming arcade.


  4. Beautiful post Vivian, Great idea for this week theme thanks for sharing my friend 🙂


  5. Wow, Vivian! Great story! Great message! And in such rhythmic rhyme! I’m impressed you got all that into under 250 words! So glad you entered the contest 🙂


    • You are very kind, Susanna! I’m so happy you were pleased with it…I am ultra-pleased with the Summer Short and Sweets and how your creative writing prompts (and more importantly, your careful explanations of the what and why of each exercise) have encouraged and inspired me to work on my “craft” of picture book writing. I’ve always “just written” stuff…with no rhyme or reason…well, perhaps with rhyme…but not knowing the reason…never having taken any creative writing or picture book workshops…just whatever English or writing courses I had in college (back in the Stone Age).

      So thank you for your positive comments, Susanna…and for all YOU have inspired me to accomplish since last January. 🙂


  6. What do I think, you ask. Brilliant! I love rhythm and rhyme.
    After reading your first line, I knew exactly where I was.
    I burst out laughing when I read this line, “She lifted the red from the tail of the fox.” Okay, I laughed at just about every line.
    “I’ll do as I please!” the witch said with a shout. This line captured the essence of what I think a witch would act like.
    And again, you pulled one out of the hat, tying in Jake’s challenge, Susanna’s mandatory words, and not only that, you continued your bullying theme.
    Ah, one day, I hope to write like Vivian. 🙂
    Happy Labor Day!


    • Tracy…what beautiful feedback! Thank you so much…I hope you know how much I appreciate your comments. 🙂 I had lots of other verses…but they started getting a little wierd…pretty hilarious…but I didn’t like the images that formed in my mind…although seeing some of the off-beat stuff that is being published these days by traditional publishing houses, perhaps it was spot-on…for example…On day number two at Old Dragons-Lair, The campers woke up to a pretty bad scare, The headmistress traded her hairy hooked nose, For two of the princess’ delicate toes. 🙂 Yuck! But, maybe fracturedly funny. 🙂

      Anyway, can’t wait to go over and check out the other entries.
      Tracy…you made my day…have a glorious Labor Day weekend!


  7. Camp in fantasy. Very clever. I loved the ease of rhythm and rhyme. What a fun read.


    • I appreciate your positive comments, Laura! I can’t wait to go and read the other entries…I wanted to post mine before I read the others…they will be great, I know…and I might not have wanted to post mine if I had read the others first. 🙂 🙂


  8. Viv, Loved your poem. You are amazing, so creative with a great sense of humor. I have such a talented sister. I love and respect you so much. Rho

    Date: Sun, 2 Sep 2012 06:11:37 +0000 To:


  9. love it! The photo is precious as well. 🙂


    •    It’s one of my favorite photos. 🙂  So glad you liked the post…it’s an important message…hopefully the fun rhyme (especially if I had some illustrations to go with it) would help kids love who they are…which would help them love others as they are…which would decrease the acts of bullying.


  10. Vivian~I just love your entry. Your meter is spot-on! Your story is delightful. Excellent job!!!


    • Hi Penny,
      So happy you loved it!!!! And THANK YOU so much for the wonderful compliments. 🙂 I was thrilled I was able to pull it all together with the Sunday Post theme…sometimes things just mesh together. 🙂


  11. I loved the Raven: “It’s what people do that show their real beauty…”
    Good job, Vivian!


  12. Wow! A picture book just waiting for illustrations and printing. Nice job.


    • Double-wow for the awesome comment! Thank you so much, Sue…I’d love someone to come up with illustrations…maybe it could be posted to a site like UTales. 🙂 I visited your blog just now…and I’m following it!


  13. Very fun entry. I agree about the meter. Seems perfect!


    • Thanks, Stacy!  I guess Susanna’s Summer Short and Sweets, as well as the SCBWI critique sessions and Corey’s suggestions on Dylan McGee, all worked together to help me do a better job of rhyme and meter. 🙂  I appreciate your kind words!   


  14. Great rhythm, Vivian. What a clever idea. 🙂


  15. Boot camp at Old Dragons-Lair? Sounds like so much fun! I can whip up 250 words pretty easily, but rhyming them like you did, no way. It was fun to read!


  16. This was a beautifully written toe tapper of a poem! Bravo!


  17. This is lovely, Vivian. A sweet story and characters, and some fun language play, too. I really liked how you used “spellbinding” – just stuck in there, a perfect word choice. And it’s got great meter too – I read it out loud and really got into the beat. There are only two spots that stopped me:

    “Did you see that?” all of the campers cried out. [ I’d remove the extra syllable “of” to keep the rhythm consistent…]

    “I don’t like how I look…I’ll take what I wish […and put that extra syllable here, maybe “AND I’ll take what I wish”]

    Great job!


    • Yes! Yes! Yes! Your suggestions are SPOT-ON, Renee! I really appreciate the feedback…always looking to make it better. 🙂 Thank you so much for the praise…it was such fun writing it! You know, for years I never thought of writing funny, wacky stuff…just simple “old-fashioned” rhyme…with Julie’s 12×12 and Susanna’s contests, I’ve definitely stretched myself creatively…as another blogger I know says…aaahhhh, that’s better!


  18. I do so hope you are turning this in to a book Vivian…it is wonderful


  19. I love the rhyme, the story, everything! I especially like the part about lifting the red from the tail of the fox. Very inventive!


    • So happy you loved it…it’s funny, because even when I was struggling with some of the verses…the lifting the red from the tail of the fox just came so easily and I loved it and no matter what other changes I made as I wrote the story, that line was NOT going to change.:) Thanks for stopping by, Kim, and leaving such a lovely comment. 🙂


  20. What a wonderful take on this theme. Really a great post.


  21. How fun! Now I am imagining white witch with the dragon tail and fish eyes LOL! Glad boot camp taught her to be a kinder, gentler witch!


  22. That was delightful — great message and super way to get it across. (By the way, I showed a friend “Show Me How.” She’s a retired preschool teacher, and I could see that she was wishing she’d had such a book when she was teaching.)


    • Thanks for the kind words…You know me, Beth…always trying to find the messages in picture books…although I love them just for the enjoyment and entertainment they provide as well. 🙂
      Thanks for showing “Show Me How” around…glad she liked it. I wish I could encourage nursery/pre-K/kindergarten teachers to get copies for their classroom resource shelves.:)


  23. I am amazed you can turn a rhyme so quick! I like that you took the witch as a focus.


    • Thank you so much, Lauri! I love writing in rhyme…sometimes I can’t stop. : Glad you liked the witch in the “starring role”…I guess you could say the Raven was the co-star. 🙂 I enjoyed your story very much…and love your blog!


  24. I enjoyed reading your poem, great story! And I love your reflection photo as well, sweet and precious!


  25. Oh, Vivian . . . that is FABULOUS! You’ve said so much in such a darling way.

    You go, girl! 😀


    • Aw shucks, Nancy!  Thank you so much…I value your opinion. 🙂  And it’s so much FUN!  Now all I have to do is get serious and decide how I will get these “gems” in print (after they are revised a million times)…traditional route, self-publish, ebook…lots of choices.  


  26. Brilliant! You said so much in such tightly constructed sentences and each carried its own weight and wisdom… I Love it Vivian and hope you win. 😉


    •  You are so kind, Eliz!  I came in third…which was wonderful, considering how lovely all of the other entries were. 😉  It was a great creative writing exercise…I learn so much with each attempt. 🙂  


  27. Thanks for linking up. 🙂 I’ll go and check out your Sunday Post!


  1. Pingback: Sunday Post – Reflections of Light Give Golden Swords « Inspiration Import

  2. Pingback: Sunday Post: Reflection | Autumn in Bruges

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

National Day Calendar

Fun, unusual and forgotten designations on our calendar.

Michelle Eastman Books

Kid Lit Author and Advocate


about reading, writing & thinking children's books

Laura Boffa: Write of Way

Giving the way of writing the right of way


A Gallery of New Picture Book Talent

EMU's Debuts

From Deal to Debut: the Path to Publication

Wander, Ponder, Write

A KidLit Journey...

Picture Book House

reviews and stories about parenting with picture books

Blogging Through the Fourth Dimension

Norah Colvin

Live Love Laugh Learn . . . Create the possibilities

Beth Anderson, Children's Writer

Reader, Writer, Miner of Moments

Dan Szczesny

Travel Writer / Journalist / Author

Susanna Leonard Hill

Children's Author

The Stinky Backpack

Traveling the Everyday World

Write One Real Life

Where writing meets faith in the real world.

The Runaway Palate

Food. Travel. Cooking. Random musings. Maybe some historical stuff.

The Reader and the Book

"O Day of days when we can read! The reader and the book, either without the other is naught." Ralph Waldo Emerson


Authors & Illustrators Wild About Kidlit!

One Good Thing

Teresa Robeson's 365-Day project

Tracy Campbell

Heart for Ewe Publishing

kidsbook friends

Check out this blog about children's books!

Mary Jo Beswick

Author and Illustrator of Children's Picture Books

Leslie Leibhardt Goodman

Children's Writer

Pattern Me Mommy

My journey from Type A know-it-all to MOMMY! by Anna Redding


PB author, poet, writing for kids

Friendly Fairy Tales

Fairy Tales and Poetry Celebrating Magic and Nature for Kids of all Ages

Lauri Fortino's Frog On A (B)log

Sharing and Celebrating Picture Books Since 2009

Stacy S. Jensen

Let's Read Picture Books Together

Reading With Rhythm

book reviews from Rhythm the Library Dog

Nerdy Book Club

A community of readers

Nerdy Chicks Write

Get it Write this Summer!

Laura Sassi Tales

Celebrating writing, reading, and life.

Erika Wassall here... The Jersey Farm Scribe

Author, Freelance Writer, Entreprenur... LIVER of life

Angie Karcher

Writing Children's Books

Chapter Book Chat

A Writer Reviews Chapter Books, by Marty Mokler Banks

The Blabbermouth Blog

Literary Agent Linda Epstein's Yakkety Yakking

The Waiting

Turns out, it's not the hardest part.

%d bloggers like this: