THE BARK IN THE PARK
By: Andy Allen
Illustrated By: Brian Barber
Published: March 2015
Publisher: Beaver’s Pond Press
After attending a teacher’s conference, Allen saw some of the teachers had written books and decided he wanted to challenge himself into writing his own children’s book for young learners. Allen decided to base his story on his dog, Norman and Norman’s fall into a creek during the Flood of 2008. It was such a huge hit with kids that he knew he had to write another story featuring Norman.
A bullying theme was definitely a heavier topic to write about and it took the author a few rewrites to finally get it right. Ultimately, he wrote this story to create a conversation about empathy and the Golden Rule. Allen’s hope is that if everyone abides by the Golden Rule, we will all feel loved and the idea of hurting others will no longer be part of our future psyche. This book is his part to help kids become friends. By telling the lesson through animals he feels it can sometimes make heavier topics easier because kids are naturally drawn into animal stories.
In the future, Allen hopes to write a Christmas story with Norman and eventually, tackle the heavy topic of a death of a loved one. For right now, he is looking forward to warm spring days outside with Norman.
|Andy Allen and Norman|
Brian Barber lives in Minnesota. Brian is an illustrator and animator who has illustrated several children’s books and animated short films and TV commercials. You can see more of Brian’s work at BrianBarber.com.
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