This week, we will read the first of a book I wrote and published four years ago. The title, Mumsket, does nothing to describe the story within, but it does fit the theme of these previous read-alouds. Mumsket contains an element of survival and continues to explore the effects of bullying.
The story begins with an oppressed young man named Aaron. Aaron doesn't receive any support from his mother or her new husband. In fact, Aaron and his mother are abused greatly by her husband. When Aaron is swept away in a snowstorm, he - and readers - are introduced to the title character, Mumsket. Mumsket is able to reach Aaron in a way no one ever has, and Aaron realizes that he does not have to continue to live in the same way as his mother.
This is the first of my own books that I will share with the class. Others will include my first attempt at writing, Crumbling Spirit, which is a brief telling of my own experience teaching four miles from the 1995 terrorist bomb in Oklahoma City (as told by a ten-year-old girl). Another, Chippin Cleats takes a troubled inner city youth from the streets of St. Louis to the rural town of Shannon Springs, Oklahoma, where the main character, Devon, must figure out that life does not have to be the way he always expected it to be growing up in St. Louis. Finally, my latest book is Out of the Wind. Out of the Wind tells a response and recovery story which begins with the EF5 tornado in Joplin.
By using my own books in class, I hope to share a passion and excitement for creating and writing. Birthing strings of words together, and even editing them to constantly improve them should not be a painful labor. It should be an enjoyable experience of which the author can be proud. I will talk extensively, along the way, about the writing process.