Showing posts from February, 2020

The Adventurers and Explorers: How Ed and Mel got thier names.

I was inspired to have the characters Ed and Mel belong to a family of adventurers. I needed names that could be adapted to a CVC format, but the characters' names needed to be more than just a name that fit the CVC format. These names stand for something. These character's names reflect the bravery of men and women who have conquered new territories and ventured into the unknown. Students who deal with reading difficulties, and their families, are also brave as they venture into their schools and the world of print. Here are the adventurers who inspired the Ed and Mel's names. Links to other Websites: Edmund Hillary*  Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay were the first to reach the peak of Mt. Everest. Amelia Earhart*  Amelia Earhart was the first woman to fly across the Atlantic. * These are links to other Websites. In my research to find the names of great adventurers, I was introduced to Aloha Wanderwell* . Aloha became the first woman to drive around the world

Kashgar, China and The Silk Road (near The Black Silk Path)

I chose Kashgar, China as a destination for Ed and Mel as it has an airport and has been a center of trade along the Silk Road. As The Black Silk Path is based on the Silk Road, I thought it would be fitting to have the entrance to The Black Silk Path near Kashgar and the Pamir Mountains. Heather Doolittle More information (links to Britannica): Kashgar Video of Kashgar  The Silk Road Pamir Mountains Google Maps:

Argentina's Northern Patagonia Mountains

The Estancia Ranquilco was the inspiration for the ranch which Ed and Mel visit on their quest to find The Black Silk Path. I'd love to see this place in person someday. Heather Doolittle Definitions (links to Britannica): Patagonia Mountains Google Maps:

Arcos de la Frontera - Home of Mother Henrietta or Mom Hen

I had fun looking at different places around the globe as I decided where Ed and Mel would be traveling. I decided their friend, Mother Henrietta would live at the convent in Arcos de la Frontera. The village has a castle, and there is a convent. I don't know much about it, but it looks like you can order a sweet treat from the nuns through a small door with a turntable. Check out the village of Arcos de la Frontera and the information on the convent (see the Convento de Mercedarias Descalzas). While the nuns at Convento de Mercedarias Descalzas may be cloistered nuns in real life, in "The Black Silk Path" Mother Henrietta is eager to help Ed and Mel find their parents. Heather Doolittle Definitions (links to Merriam-Webster): Convent Cloister Google Maps:

Amazon SALE!

Amazon has selected to run a sale on the paperback edition of "The Black Silk Path." It is now 10% off! I wish I could tell you how long it will be on sale, but all I know is that it is on sale as of 2/6/2020 at 11:30 MST. It is on sale for a "random" amount of time. So, if you want to take advantage of this discount, don't wait! I don't know when the algorithms will end the sale.

Free Activity: Illustrate the Graphic Novel Edition

We all have dreams. Sometimes we have to adjust those dreams, but that doesn't mean we have to give up on them. My original dream for "The Black Silk Path" included a portion of the story being told in a graphic novel format. As a parent of a dyslexic student, graphic novels have been an important tool in our tool bag. As I began to write and draw, I realized that I needed to make some changes. If I held on to the full dream in its original form, it was much less likely to happen. I could adapt my dream or I could watch it die. "The Black Silk Path" is different in a couple ways from my original vision. But that is O.K. I am excited to see what it has become. I'm also excited about changing the idea for a graphic novel section in the book into a graphic novel student activity. I started the graphic novel adaptation of "The Black Silk Path." I added some panel templates so students can finish the job. I've also included a title page where the