FRIENDLY ADVICE by Laurie Knowlton

Promotion Photo  Recently a friend posted on her face book an amazing statement that I so wish I was the author. It went like this:
“Sometimes when I am bored I go to the garden and cover myself with dirt and pretend I am a carrot.”
I called my friend the minute I saw her post and said, “Please take that statement off your page and let me have it.”
(We are really close friends)
She laughed, and said “I got it from a friend, but go for it.”
I told her, “I love it! That statement is a great beginning of a children’s book—actually it would be a great beginning of a middle grade, a mystery, or even a YA.”
Now you have to understand my enthusiasm. It has been a long time since I have had a smidgen of an idea. The past two years have been consumed with the illness and the death of both of my parents, my father-in-law, and then the death of my youngest daughter’s marriage. Grief, anger, sorrow, and numbness have been my constant companions.
That one wonderful sentence woke me up. It was magnificent! It was unique! It was fun! It was inspiring. It has also traveled all over the internet like wild fire.
Bummer.
I wanted that idea. I needed that idea. I clung to that one statement like a drowning person. But after a day or so I knew I had to give it up. I had to stop with the obsession of owning that one fantastic line.
It wasn’t mine. But it did get me thinking.
And then it happened… a smidge of an idea. My idea. My emotions. My writing. And I realized all I had to do was change my focus from all those sad consuming thoughts and look around me. Ideas surround us daily begging to be claimed.
Sorry, I have to go. I’ve got some writing to do.

5 thoughts on “FRIENDLY ADVICE by Laurie Knowlton

  1. Do you remember the elephant jokes? I remember this line as the punch line to a variation on the elephant jokes. Wish I could remember the elephant set up to the joke,(maybe it was, “How do you catch an elephant? Make a noise like a peanut.) but the second part is “How do you catch a rabbit?” Sit in the garden and make a noise like a carrot.
    The reason this is so funny to kids is because neither rabbits nor carrots make a noise.

  2. As soon as I have a garden to plant in (I am not complaining about the weather–it suits me,) it’s just that I know being a carrot ready to pop out of the earth is my destiny. Come and pop with me, I’ll get lots of dirt. I love carrots, I love you, I love dirt…not so much!

  3. Oh, Laurie, so glad the spark is back! I went thru losses, too, and it took a long time to get past the grief and paralyzing depression, sigh. But we are writers, and when we are not writing, life is gray. Hooray for carrots : )
    Cheryl