What has 302 words and has been printed 70 times?

Hi everyone,

WAKE UP, SUN! is a Step Into Reading book. I’ve often said that during the six years I served on the Springfield, Missouri school board (1982-88) I only produced one work that was worth keeping, this one.

The first customer review that appeared on Amazon.com was by a parent who strongly objected about the farmer firing his shotgun into the air to frighten away what he thought was a fox in the henhouse. Here’s the comment. “If you don’t like to see guns pop up unexpectedly in children’s books then don’t buy this one. I was thoroughly disappointed to see a gun come into play towards the end of what was, until that point, a nice story.”

That set off a bit of a tempest in a teapot with such stalwart defenders of my story as this: “Farmer never actually fired the gun AT anything. Look at where he is pointing the barrel. To the sky. It was a scare tactic…and that was all. Let’s move into the real world people.” My favorite: “Guns don’t kill people. Malevolent cows with pitchforks kill people.”

WAKE UP, SUN! was illustrated by Hans Wilhelm and published in 1986. It just went into its 70th printing. Sales passed 1,000,000 copies quite a while back. Now and then my M.O.W. tells me I should write another story like WAKE UP, SUN! Yeah, right. I’m trying, lady.

10 comments on “What has 302 words and has been printed 70 times?

  1. Yeah–I had a woman once oobject mightly to a grandmother reading tea leaves as a joke with he grandson. Said that I was promoting paganism in a picture book! The book, NO BATH TONIGHT. And by the way, I keep meaning to ask, what does M.O.W. stand for? My Own Woman? My Old Woman? My Other Woman?


    • We’re terrible people, Jane. Let’s face it. So was Roald Dahl. His farmers spent a whole book trying to kill a fox. M.O.W. stands for Mean Old Wife. Sometimes she thinks it’s funny. Sometimes, not so much. Then it stands for Marvelous Outstanding Wife.

    • I agree, Lori. We did another one more recently called A MONSTER IS COMING! So far so good with it, too.

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