Saturday, April 21, 2012

s is for stories

One of my critique partners posted a question this week and I’m happy to say that I knew the answer instantly. No beating around the bush for me. No hemming and hawing. There was nothing wishy-washy about it at all.
The question was this:
If you could be any fictional character, who would you be?

My answer:
Peter Pan, of course.
Hands down. No doubt about it.
This is my final answer…and I’m sticking with it!

My choice is based on more than just the fact that Peter Pan could fly although that fact alone is sufficient to justify my decision. There’s more to it than the fact that Peter dreamt of remaining a child forever although that’s a big part of it for me, too.

What captured my imagination when I saw the theater production for the first time was the fact that the role of Peter Pan was played by a girl—Mary Martin. I ached to be just like her…to be Peter Pan. I spent a good portion of my childhood hanging out in the highest branches of the tallest tree I could find. I explored the woods and streams that surrounded my childhood home for hours on end…alone. I celebrated every thunder storm and every snowstorm and had no fear of venturing outside during the worst of them. I knew how to read the sky. I was adventurous, brave, curious, free, and imaginative when I was Peter’s age…whatever age he was. I wanted to be just like him…except for one problem.

The saddest thing in Peter’s life was the fact that he didn’t know any STORIES. No one read to him:

“She (Wendy) was just slightly disappointed when he (Peter) admitted that he came to the nursery window not to see her but to listen to their STORIES.
                        ‘You see I don’t know any STORIES. None of the lost boys knows any STORIES.’
                        ‘How perfectly awful,’ Wendy said.
                        ‘Do you know,’ Peter asked, ‘why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the STORIES.’ …
                         ... "Oh, the STORIES I could tell to the boys!' she cried, and then Peter gripped her began to draw her towards the window. 
                         ‘Let me go!’ she ordered him.
                         ‘Wendy, do come with me and tell the other boys.’
                         Of course she was very pleased to be asked but she said, ‘Oh dear, I can’t. I can’t fly.’
                         ‘I’ll teach you. I’ll teach you how to jump on the wind’s back, and then away we go.’”

In a way I think we all learn to fly in our hearts and souls through the STORIES we hear, thro,ugh the STORIES we write, the songs we sing, and the pictures we draw. We owe it to Peter, to all the lost children of the world, and to the adults who still don’t know any STORIES, to keep on writing, singing, dancing, and drawing.

I owe it to my friend for posing this question today. So I’d like to pass it on to you:

If you could be any fictional character, who would you be?
Are you anything like him/her as a person today?
“And, even if you can no longer remember how to fly to Neverland,
Peter will always come to rescue you if you want him to.
All you have to do is believe.”
--Tony DiTerlizzi--
In my next post I'll share a few TIPS with you.


  1. Awesome post! I believe in fairies!!! Everyone has a story, but some don't get the opportunity to share it because no one ever asks them.

    I would like to be Atticus Finch for a day.

  2. Hercule Poirot.....I would love to use my "little grey cells" to solve a mystery.

  3. I guess I would be Superman and somehow bring the world to peace. I always thought it was silly for him to have all that power and use it to catch bankrobbers.

  4. Such a great post. I was at a writers workshop yesterday where Peter Pan was discussed and reviewed. For me, Miss Marple (but only for a few hours!)

    If you've the time, pop over to my blog. I'm the author of the Bella and Britt series for kids.