Updated: Jul 18, 2022
How can we make stories more enjoyable for children?
That was the question that prompted me on this journey to start Constellation Publishing, so that we could create Story Eggs.
It started with "The Rainbow Stone", an Interactive Fiction story that I wrote for my nieces in 2013. It existed only as a Word Document, which I shared with my mother, who then read it to my nieces again and again until they had it memorized.
In 2014, i had dreams of turning the story into an interactive illustrated story app so that other children could enjoy it, but after trying to find an illustrator who could help bring my story to life and attempting to crowd-source some investment money, I realized that maybe it would never be possible to do.
I shared my story with a number of students over the next few years while teaching in South Korea and Thailand, and even though they always seemed enthusiastic about reading The Rainbow Stone, I never really considered trying to have it illustrated again.
65 pages. Crazy. Children's books are never 65 pages long.
But then, in 2019, I had my first child, and by the spring of 2021, I was looking through the App store for "books for kids". And suddenly, I realized that there was a huge market for children stories. But...and this was the important thing...most of the stories were not good. They were either rehashed fairy tales, or stories with very little plot or character development. Some of them were quite pretty in terms of illustrations, but they weren't....fun stories.
And thus the journey continued, and I realized that I could do this. I needed MORE stories and I needed to hire illustrators, and I needed to start a corporation...find music....plan out the app in detail...find translators...write EVEN MORE stories...start a blog...
and here we are.
What will this blog be about? How to make an app? Maybe.
A discussion about reading and how to encourage our children to love reading? But how can books compare to the games they play on their iPads all day? That's a future blog post.
We are writing stories and creating a platform so that children can learn to love reading.
Children will learn to critically think about what is happening in stories and use their newly found critical thinking skills to make choices about what happens next in the story.
We call it "Active Reading", as opposed to just passively listening to someone read you a book (if you're a toddler), or just skimming the words while only focusing on the illustrations (if you're an older child).
Story Eggs - It's where readers get to 'hatch' their stories and decide how those stories will end.