Dawn Colclasure's Blog

Author and poet Dawn Colclasure

Sunday, May 22, 2016

God's Birds: How a wounded bird inspired a story for children

Several years ago, when I lived in the California desert, I happened to look out my window one day and noticed a bird on the ground of my shared backyard. (I lived in a duplex at the time.) I love birds and I enjoy watching birds, but I noticed something was a little “off” with this one. It seemed to act like something was wrong.

At this time, my husband, who was my boyfriend at the time, lived with me, and I told him about the bird. He went outside to examine it. I noticed how the bird didn’t try to avoid him or fly away as he approached. He was able to gently pick up the bird and examine it more closely. After his examination of the bird was finished, he looked to where I stood at the window and signed to me that it looked like the bird had a broken wing. He placed the bird back down on the ground and I went outside to put a large flat bowl of water out for the bird. We both went inside and I watched the bird drink the water. Then the bird was able to fly away.

Later that day, I was struck with a story idea. That story idea became a story I wrote for children called God’s Birds. I wrote this story so long ago, but it is now finally released as a self-published book for children. I really believe the incident with the injured bird inspired that story. The story is quite different from my own “bird incident” but that’s pretty much how story ideas work. They’re usually not exactly the same as the real-life events that inspire them, but they are born because of those events.

Here is the blurb for God’s Birds:

Simon is a little boy who finds a starving bird in the park. He shares his food with the bird and later notices the bird closely keeping an eye on him every day. What Simon doesn’t know is that the bird had been with him all his life, watching over him wherever he went. Simon eventually learns that this is one of God's very special birds.

I want to thank my daughter, Jennifer Wilson, for illustrating this book. I am so happy we can work together as a team to create these books. This is why I continue to self-publish children's books, because she is able to illustrate them and I am grateful she can be a part of them in that way. You’ll see more of her work in my next children’s book, due out in July.

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