According to his bio and from interviewing him, I found out that he loves to inspire children to find their dreams.
He used to be an illustrator for Disney, where he spent 70 hours a week animating stories. One day he was asked to illustrate a book, and when he told the publisher that he could illustrate a 32-page book in 15 days, the publisher was flabbergasted. By doing so much animation he had learned to draw very quickly, because the traditional illustrator takes a year or a year and a half to draw the pictures for a 32-page children’s story. The publisher, needless to say, was thrilled, and he told Adams that he was going to make a lot of money in this business. The author smiled!
Adams’ bio says that he is an award-winning illustrator, author and publisher who has illustrated 46 children’s books to date. He is also a public speaker who uses his talents to inspire others through reading, writing and art. He resides in Longwood, Fla., with his wife, Angela, his two children, Isabella and Carter, and their dogs, Russell and Libbi. You can learn more about him at www.markwayneadams.com.
I am going to tell you about four of the books that he has either written or illustrated. The first one, “King for a Day,” he wrote and illustrated himself. Adams suggests that this book teaches its readers about friendship, integrity and self-discovery. He helps children find their passion. The story is about a dog named Russell that shares his passions with his best friends, a boy named Carter, a stuffed lion named Litto, and a toy unicorn named Uma. They take you on an adventure toward a jamboree that ends with fun and excitement.
At the end of the book, Adams has a section where he shows the children how to create their own story. He also has a fun couple of pages where the children learn to draw characters themselves, and how to do layout sketches. He finishes the book by showing step-by-step directions of how he builds his characters.
Adams told me that he shows his daughter, Isabella, how to draw something only once. She then, on her own, takes what he has drawn in her sketch book, flips it over, and draws it again and again. Your children would be able to do this with these drawings as well. This book will provide days of fun with his illustration lessons. You may want to go ahead and purchase a good sketch book (which you can purchase on his website) and a pencil so the pursuit will go off without a hitch.
“Jilli, That’s Silly!” A Story About Being A Girl is written by Christa Carpenter but illustrated by Adams. In it, Jilli spends her time dazzling her mom with her silliness as she is being a normal, young girl. Book talk questions end this book, and they would be an excellent way for parents and daughters to discuss what they read and to delve further into the world of books and silliness.
Carpenter, the author, is a mother of two wonderful children who inspire her to write, and she enjoys teaching first-graders to be leaders using Dr. Stephen Covey’s “7 Habits of Happy Kids.” Christa lives in Florida with her son and daughter, Nicholas and Jillian, their funny dog, Eddie, and their clever cat, Rex.
“Nicholas, that’s Ridiculous,” A Story About Being a Boy, also written by Carpenter and illustrated by Adams, is written in rhyme. At the end there is a set of book talk questions for boys. Just like Jilli manages to be “silli,” Nicholas manages to be ridiculous all day. But being ridiculous makes many happy memories and presents a lot of memorable moments.
Finally, the book I like best is “The Fart Fairy,” written by Bobbie Hinman and illustrated by Adams. It evens comes with an audio CD of “The Fart Fairy Song” which is sung to the tune of “Pop Goes the Weasel.” These are excellent books for kindergarten through third graders and beyond. I taught school for a long time, and there were always giggles and laughs, regardless of the rules, whenever the “fart fairy” made a visit. Such a “visit” is bound to happen sometime in a classroom almost every day, and instead of being a “sour puss” just use the situation for a teachable moment and enjoy the “fart fairy” song with your children. I recommend this for teachers and families alike.
The song turns an unfortunate situation into a funny one that will help anyone face an embarrassing moment when it happens to them, and will make everyone’s life a little more fun. You might even catch your own frown turning into a smile!
Enjoy amazing art and stories, be inspired, and create leaders for now and the future. Read and take the time to discuss these books with your children. You and your children will be the better for it.
• The Barker House of the Neva Lomason Memorial Library will have an open house on Nov. 3 between the hours of 12 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. Please plan to come and enjoy.
Blessings and happy inspiration!
Buice, a Carrollton resident, writes a weekly book review for the Times-Georgian. anita of anitabook.com.