Wednesday Whimsy – Excerpt & Illustrations from My First Novel

While going through ALL  the household’s boxes after a recent move, I found the actual first story I ever wrote, when I was 7. I remember tramping through puddles of melting snow outside our upstate New York home while pondering plot points, so it must have been Spring. I’ve always had some vague memory of this deathless epic – self illustrated too! – but it was fun to spend a few moments browsing through the crumbling pages. Even then I had a pen name, I discover – Jeanet Isabella Gray Holton. No idea where that came from!

“I am writing this book from memory and imagination,” I said in the Forward. Not a bad way to go, even now…

This was a truly dramatic opus about princesses and their pets and their dresses and their gardens, entitled THE PRINCESSES…’s the love story portion of this saga, in its seven sentence entirety:

 The princess Roberta went to the sea and saw a steam ship. She boarded and asked for the captain. She knew that it is a rule, some royal person must inspect a ship before it may pass.  When she left the ship with the captain, she was saying, “Yes, I do!”

At the castle the king had a long talk with the captain. Then he said, “Prepare a feast for the first marrigagge.*” So they were married…..

And lived happily ever after apparently, with the cats, dogs and flying horses, in the many gardens – oh, and four children who I mentioned in an epilog – Barb, Bob, Billy and Mary.

I’m glad I learned to put a few more twists and turns in my plots, drop more obstacles in the lovers’ path to the HEA, found a wonderful Editor…gave up the illustration business….and at least now my heroes also get a name!

*spelling apparently not my strongest skill at age 7 but I had GREAT handwriting! and yes, I loved exclamation points even then.


What kinds of stories did you write or draw when you were a kid?

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