I know you drew this for me a few months ago, but I now find that your work beautifully captures what it was like living at home and quarantining during a pandemic.
For example, you have quite a few people crowded into a small home, but everyone, including the gigantic bunny, has found their own private space within it. Second, you’ve drawn arrows to show where to walk or move to maintain social distancing. Lastly, someone is dropping off a basket of food, maybe even baked goods, for the folks inside. Very kind.
That is what I plan to remember the most about the pandemic: the kindness of others. I’ll be forever grateful to organizations and people who have kept me safely occupied and in good health: healthcare professionals, librarians, writing organizations, public parks, government workers, my gym, and letters from my readers. I’ll be sure to include their acts of selflessness in future stories.
You’ve done a wonderful job drawing the cover of my latest novel, Clear Skies, about a boy in the 1960s who wants to become an astronomer and is caught up in the excitement of the Space Race to the moon.
I have good news for you. I did retire from my day job, but it was only so that I could write full time and publish more novels. I also now have more time to visit schools and meet students like you! I try to show students how they can find time in their busy schedules to write their own stories.
“Clear skies” is what telescope operators say to each other for good luck. They don’t want clouds or fog blocking their view of the starry universe. So, I’m wishing you clear skies now that the pandemic is over, and we can make the most of this summer!
Your words are too kind, but thank you for them. You made me smile.
The room you’ve drawn looks like a lot of fun, mostly because it has two of my favorite things: books (of course!) and a telescope.
Now, I’ve never owned my own telescope, but I’ve had a chance to look through others, and I marvel at the worlds that I can see so far away. I find it really hard to imagine what’s beyond the reach of a telescope. When you look through your telescope, does it give you deep thoughts, too?
I love to write about Space and about kids who enjoy Space and rockets as much as I do. I’m so glad you like Martin Bridge. You might like my new character named Arno Creelman who I wrote about in Clear Skies. He’s a big telescope fan.
I’m so glad you spotted a bluejay. I have a few fun facts for you. Even though bluejays look blue to us, their feathers are actually brown. What happens is a trick of light. All of the colours of light pass through the feathers except for blue, and that’s what we see. Neat!
Bluejays are very smart. They are a member of the crow and raven family, and they know how to use tools to get food. Also, they are very good at waiting for opportunities to eat, such as carefully watching as people enjoy their picnic lunch and when they turn away, bluejays will swoop in for the steal.
Lastly, bluejays can imitate the sound of hawks. When they spot one looking for its next meal, they call out like a hawk to warn other birds that a hawk is nearby. That way, the birds around take heed so that they don’t become lunch.
Thank you so much for your birdwatching report. You’ve done a lovely job.
Your family-made tree fort is very special, indeed. I admire how strongly it has been built, using a tree along with some posts and footings to keep you and your guests safe. I’m sure it will stand up to every kind of weather. You must have had so much fun building it.
Does your dog rush around your tree fort because it is scared of lightning? My dog is fine with lightning. Just don’t bring out a vacuum, or a rake, or a garden hose. Those terrify her.
I hope you get to share your tree fort soon with friends and your granddad who helped you build it. You have a very special place to share.
I chose your lovely letter today because of the trees you’ve drawn. I especially appreciate the bluejays tucked into the highest limbs. I have some of those visiting my small backyard from time to time. Their calls sound like a squeaky clothesline to me. I love writing with nothing but the sounds of birdsong in the background. It helps me concentrate and at the same time, reminds me that I am part of the larger world.
Sadly, a giant maple tree in my backyard must now be taken down. Its limbs have been heavily damaged by the hurricanes we have been hit with, and now the tree poses a danger to the houses in my neighbourhood. It will be such a loss, almost like a beloved pet. We will take great care with the rest of the plants in our yard, and perhaps plant a new tree next to the stump for future generations to enjoy.
Your drawing gives me hope.