Helping with Homework, Improving Your Writing

Posted on May 12, 2012

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Sometimes you can kill two birds with one stone.  Though, I’ve never had the desire to kill a bird, I like it when can I accomplish two goals at once.  Yesterday was an opportunity to do just that.

Cover of "Tiger (The Five Ancestors, Book...

Cover of Tiger (The Five Ancestors, Book 1)

My youngest son sometimes needs encouragement to read books for school book reports.  He likes to have me read his book and discuss it with him after both of us have read it.  I’ve done this with him a few times lately.  Yesterday was the most enjoyable so far because I discovered the book Tiger by Jeff Stone.

I’m a sucker for action/adventure stories especially when it’s set in medieval China, like Tiger is.  It just so happens that I’m born in the year of the Tiger, just like my oldest son.  And this book plays off of classic Chinese astrology beliefs about the kind of person born as a “tiger”.  Lots of fun!

The book is Jeff Stone’s first novel, published in 2006, and is very good.  In his acknowledgments, he explained how he found his literary agent at the Big Sur writing workshop.  I’m fairly convinced that my next step in developing my work as a novelist is to attend a writer’s conference.  I was going to attend one in Madison in March, but that fell through for a few reasons.  I can only say it felt serendipitous to find Tiger at this time.

You never know how you will find writing inspiration and guidance. Sometimes, helping your kids with their school work helps you as much as it does them!