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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The First Book I Ever Wrote

by Hanna Martine

In grade school I decided I was going to be an author when I grew up. I knew I had to start somewhere, so I wrote my first book. Using my mom's Smith-Corona typewriter, I wove a thrilling tale of beauty pageants, mermaids, unicorns, and unsupervised trips to tropical islands fashioned after Fantasy Island (hey, it was the early eighties). It was called ...

"Origanal" Title

I typed the story on the bottom half of the page and illustrated it on the top. Because that's what writers did, people.

How amazing was this book? So amazing that I dedicated it to my brain. MY BRAIN.

I'll spare you the entire book, but here are some choice pages.

I started to draw BOOBS on these girls and then realized that was weird since, yanno, I didn't have any yet. So I tried to make them decorations. Smooth, right? Not noticeable AT ALL. Note the phone with the cord on the left. I don't what the hell the girl on the right is talking into. Also, apparently I still liked to edit even after the book was "done." Ah, how things don't change.


Some choice eighties fashions going on here. Slanted off-the-shoulder shirts, pleated skirts, uber-long hair, rainbow tops, and ... high heels on 13 year olds?

I named a character Stevie Nicks. Not that I had any idea of who Stevie Nicks was at the time. But hey, she won the beauty pageant.

Stevie Nicks may have won the beauty pageant, but our intrepid heroine got to meet MERMAIDS! And UNICORNS! (which were too hard to draw) Conveniently, on her trip to Paradise Island, she brought along her two favorite books: "Speaking to Mermaids and Unicorns," and "How to Keep Mermaids and Unicorns Where They Are"




Apparently back then I had no author anxiety as I do now. I wanted to know exactly how much readers liked my book. So I created a survey on the back cover ...

No 1/4. No 3/4 or 5/8. Oh no. You liked it or you didn't, or you were clearly divided. Genius. All books should have this now. Forget Goodreads or Amazon.


21 comments:

  1. Freaking adorable!

    I'd circle yes in a heartbeat!

    :-)

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  2. Wow, Hanna!

    *My* first book was about a mermaid. (2nd grade) I don't still have it anymore, but I remember it was written on that paper where the top half was blank and the bottom half was lined. I'm a writer, not an artist, but the book had hand drawn pictures too (back before I realized I wasn't an author) and a state of the art staple binding. :)

    It is soooo cool you still have yours. And I dare you to dedicate your next book to your brain for thinking up your story. Can you imagine the look on your editor's face. LOL!

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    1. Hahahahaha.... That would be GREAT to dedicate your next book to your brain.

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    2. I'm so totally doing this. hahahahahahaha

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    3. So... I got very little sleep last night and realize *now* that this says "(back before I realized I wasn't an author)... Now while. some readers might agree with that assessment, I really meant to say "(back before I realized I wasn't an ARTSIT). Sheesh. :)

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  3. Hanna,
    What a great way to start my day! So cute and I can't stop laughing about the dedication. Don't you love the confidence of young girls? I do!

    My first book was about an ostrich, Ollie the Ostrich. While other girls wrote about mermaids and unicorns, I wrote about one of the ugliest creatures on earth. :D

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    1. And I bet that set you apart! You were such a trail blazer. :)

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  4. Hanna, this is priceless and delightful, makes me want to dig through my old stuff. Oh and I'll have you know the slanted off-shoulder in my closet is offended!
    Hugs,
    Sonali

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    1. I have a bunch too! So funny how the stuff comes back.

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  5. Ha! Love it! I too have a fabulous book from when I was in 2nd grade. Of course, I thanked my family, and not my brain, lol! Too cute - thanks for sharing!

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    1. I'm just so sad that it's completely falling apart.

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  6. Did you like my book? YES!!

    This is brilliant! Love it! And I'm so stealing the dedication for my next book, if you don't mind. Just want to see if readers are paying attention. lol.

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  7. This is excellent! I am so impressed that you still have it! I wrote one as well around that age but I think it's been lost to time by now. I'll have to dig to see if I still have it! I love the idea of a questionnaire at the back of the book. Did you like it? Brilliant!Love it!

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  8. This has made me laugh hard. I love it. Not too bad. LOL And, that dedication blows me away. :)
    So glad you still have it. I loved to make books in high school about stories we had, I guess sort of like reviews, but always drew pictures at the top of beginning page, I used to draw a lot, but seems with so many moves and stuff stored, most of my stuff is gone. Sure have wished I still had some of it. I also have written many poems. Especially in birthday cards. I do have the cards to my husband where I have poems, I also used to put drawings at the top of my stationary when I wrote letters. I think this book is pretty good fro a young girl and like the illustrations, and the nice clothes. Liked the part about Stevie Nicks. She is still very a singing star. My granddaughter's favorite. She goes to her concerts every time she comes to Houston, and dresses in her style. Take care and Yes, I like it! Maxie Anderson

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    1. Thanks, Maxie! I laugh every time I see it. So glad it brought a smile to your face.

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  9. OMG This is great! It's like Lost meets Diary of a Wimpy Kid! Isn't it crazy, how most authors seem to have one particular ah-hah moment in which they know with a child's intuition that they will someday be writers. My great piece was in 6th grade. I wrote about a girl lost at sea. She died in the end. #notaromance

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  10. Hanna, That made me smile. You are very brave, my first "book" wasn't nearly so pretty or well thought out. A rating system? WOW! That's impressive.

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    1. I think I thought that everyone would automatically love it and no one would ever DARE rate below a YES.

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