Dr Niamh On The Plum Tree

Childhood Imagination Sows Seeds of Future Brilliance

Editor’s Corner: With Shawn MacKenzie

Another great post from Shawn MacKenzie for Plum Tree Books. I would like to add to her extensive list of clichés the following: It is what it is, and what goes around comes around. I think they deserve to go into the little book of hackneyed phrases! What do you think?

MacKENZIE's Dragon's Nest

Every Dog Will Have His Cliché

Scribe smallI am going to start with a little tale from the past. History is a passion of mine, particularly the history of words, writing, and books. In 1450 CE, goldsmith-turned-printer Johannes Gutenberg popularized moveable type, and books left the hallowed confines of scriptorium walls for the libraries and studies of anyone with ready cash and the ability to read. (Note: The Chinese and Koreans had moveable type as early as the 11th century, but, given the intricacies of their ideographic languages, a proliferation of books was not immediately forthcoming.)

Printing-Press-1568 As revolutionary as Gutenberg was, each word on each page still had to be set individually. Once an edition came off the presses, the type was knocked down and used for the next project. This was labor intensive, to say the least, particularly if a book became an unexpected bestseller and merited a second…

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About Dr Niamh

When I was a little girl (a very, very long time ago), I used to love learning new, really big words like ‘discombobulate’. As I grew, my love of words grew too, until I loved them so much, I could not stop writing them down. One day, as I was scribbling a particular word, a very peculiar thing happened. The word shouted at me, “Stop! Don’t put me there!” As you can imagine, I was shocked and nearly fell off my chair. When I recovered somewhat, I said to the word, “Could you stop shouting, please? I am not used to it.” Can you guess what happened next? No! I thought not. The word said, “I might be small, but I will misbehave if you do not use me properly. I will not tell the story you would like me to tell. I will say something entirely different!” I dropped my pen. I hoped that by dropping my pen, the word would stop talking. Alas! It did not. It carried on chitterchobbling, even after the ink had dried. I was in a pickle. I could not allow my words to run away with my story, now could I? I don’t know about you, but when this sort of thing happens, there is only one thing left to do if you prefer not to spend your time arguing. “Very well,” said I. “I will do as you ask if you will just be quiet and allow me to concentrate.” Since that day, I have been paying special attention to every word I invite into my stories. After all, a story should say exactly what it means to say and not be led astray. With love from Dr. Niamh, Ph.D in Learning Through The Imagination and Founder of Dr Niamh Children's Books. www.drniamhchildrensbooks.com

2 comments on “Editor’s Corner: With Shawn MacKenzie

  1. thiskidreviewsbooks
    May 23, 2013

    I like the beginning a lot! 😀

    Like

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This entry was posted on May 21, 2013 by in Special Projects and tagged , , , , , , , .
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