Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Two Book Wins - and Finley the Fearful Dog

Got great news in my inbox today - I won two more books from Goodreads! One is a nonfiction book titled What It is Like to Go to War, which I thought would be a fitting tribute to read in honor of my husband who is an Iraq War veteran. The other is a YA Fiction book called The Incredible Origins of The Onyx Sun. Both sound like excellent reads - I can't wait to get them!

In my actual mailbox today I was happy to receive the first book I won, Circle of Fire. Woot! Too bad I didn't have it before I went to work today.

In other news, I found this children's story contest and entered (even though winning means that I would give up rights to the story and I wouldn't make any money), because I like the inspiration a good writing contest gives me. I'm doubtful I will win, as I couldn't find a way to come to a good ending in 400 words or less! So, here's the story in all its glory:
Finley the Fearful Dog
by Jessica L. Buike

Finley was a special dog. He had one blue eye and one brown eye, and was very good at guarding his people’s house. He watched over the cats, and when they got cold they liked to cuddle with him. He watched over the rabbits, who liked to hop around him to show that they liked him. He even watched over his humans, who petted him and fed him and took him on rides in their car.

But Finley had a secret – he was afraid of thunder. Not just a little afraid, a lot afraid! When he heard a storm coming in, Finley tried to become small so he could fit under the bed – but that didn’t work. He tried cuddling up to the cats - but they were too warm to cuddle. He even tried to fit into the rabbit cage - but he was too big! Finally, Finley decided to go to his humans.

His humans told him not to be afraid. They petted him and explained that thunder was just lightning singing a song, and lightning was just a way for the clouds to feel better by getting rid of some electricity. They also showed Finley that as long as he was inside, he would not become wet or get hurt by the lightning. They told Finley about a special system called a tornado siren that would warn them if the storm was going to be dangerous. At that time, the humans would help all the animals to get downstairs where they could be safe.

Finley was still afraid. The thunder didn’t sound like singing to him! He closed his eyes and shivered. Soon, he fell asleep. He dreamed that he was running in the clouds, and they were singing him a song and throwing beautiful lights all around him. He realized that his humans were right – thunder wasn’t scary, it was just music from the skies.

When he woke up, Finley knew that he no longer had a reason to be afraid. He checked on the cats, who were peacefully purring in the bedroom. He checked on the rabbits, who were chewing hay contentedly in their cage. Finally, he checked on his humans, who were watching television and laughing together. He could still hear thunder, but now he knew it was only music, and he was no longer afraid.

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