A Celebrity of Determination
Four decades ago, while teaching first grade, I came up with a new story about a kitten who wanted to fly. I always enjoyed flying and loved kittens. The story was enjoyed by young and old alike and the opinion was to publish it! There were no illustrations! The project was placed aside for future reference.
Spooky waited in the wings while the bicentennial afforded me an opportunity to write the history of my hometown under the title Central Islip My Hometown. I was suddenly on a writers circle! Writing became an added chapter to my beloved teaching career. Babylon By The Sea, Around Cresson And The Alleghenies, Punxsutawney with its famous weather prognosticator and Altoona, the railroad capital of the world were among the pictorial histories that followed during the next few years. Twelve books published and forty years later Spooky came to light again.
This venture required illustrations rather than pictures. The illustrating task was a lengthy project of trial and error. The script stresses persistence and perseverance. Spooky attempted to take off like a bird but landed on all four paws. He tried a few meowful tunes on a broomstick but he could never get a paw off the ground. He was determined. Finally his dreams did take flight in a delightful way.
Appearing at expo engagements in the U.S. and across the globe, and at autograph sessions held at national bookstores, Spooky has now established himself as quite a celebrity of determination.