“Stevie the seahorse lives in England. Her favorite singer is Stevie Nicks, and she loves watching soccer (they call it football in England!), especially Liverpool Football Club.”
Those words, accompanying a stuffed seahorse in the Kentucky St. window of Copperfields Books, is just one of the many biographical “story prompt” that have been created by a team of local booksellers, to encourage and inspire young local writers to think up a story about Stevie the Seahorse, or Oscar the fox) he’s from Guatmala, but now lives in Portland.
Or best friends Braymond the donkey and Ralph the dog.
It’s year two of Copperfield’s annual Kids Summer Writing Contest, and to kick things off, more than a dozen stuffed animals have been put on display, each with their own biographical details (name, birth place, a notable characteristic or two), to ignite the creative juices of all participants. Each animal has a number.
There is a decidely international flair to this year’s crop of critters, which hail from countries all around the world.
To become involved, young writers go to the front counter inside, draw a “story number,” then find the corresponding stuffie in the window. After reading the backstory prompt, writers have until August 5 to write a story about that animal, with finished works needing to be between 250 and 1000 words long.
On Aug. 10, at 7 p.m., Copperfield’s is throwing its annual Read Aloud Party, where participants who choose to do so can read their stories for the other guests. Three winning stories will be announced, and the authors of those tales will receive the stuffed animal that inspired their story, with one Grand Prize winner receiving a Copperfield’s Gift Card.
As last year, the three winning stories will then be published in the Argus-Courier.
For additional details, visit Copperfield’s at 140 Kentucky St.