Three Ghost Friends: Learn About Shapes started with a drawing on a window.
My son and I were drawing with Crayola washable window markers on our large living room windows. My son was coloring and I was drawing shapes.
I thought, "How could a ghost become a shape?" (At the time, everything I saw turned into a ghost! It still occasionally happens today!)
On the window, I made a drawing of a ghost going through a circular tunnel. On one side it was a full-sized ghost then after going through the circular tunnel the ghost was the shape of a circle. However, I struggled with what else a ghost could go through that would turn it into a shape;
a doorway? ("A rectangle. Yes. But a little tall for my ghosts.")
a window? ("A square. This could work.")
a tent? ("A triangle. Yes. But you don't really go through a tent.")
I also struggled with how the ghosts would become full size again. They couldn't drink milk like in Three Ghost Friends: Learn About Colors. So, would they have to go through a ghost-shaped tunnel? That would be pretty silly.
So, I left the drawing on the window.
After a week, I still really liked the ideas especially the one about the triangle tent. Then, I thought, "What if the ghost just hid inside a tent instead of going through the tent? It would still look like a triangle."
That was it! The ghosts could hide!!!
My mind started wrestling with the story; hiding....tent....Maybe, the Three Ghost Friends could play hide and seek while camping.
|I guess this little doodle was supposed to be a pentagon ghost?|
|Here is an early sketch of the ending of the book where the ghost dad appears.|
|In the top sketch on this page you can see the scene where the Three Ghost Friends all hide from the ghost dad to make a rectangle ghost, a trapezoid ghost and an oval ghost.|
|This initial full page spread illustration is of the ghosts heading out to become ghost squares. I later moved the trash can because the ghosts would all have been clumped together.|
|I loved seeing this illustration in full color. My silly idea about a ghost in a tent had come to life.|
|When I was illustrating the scenes where one ghost finds another ghost, I came up with the line, "Boo! I found you!" This was an important discovery. It is one of my favorite lines to read aloud.|
|Can you find the ghost shapes? The ghost dad can't and he resorts to food (S'mores!) to get the ghosts to reveal themselves!|
Below is a video of me reading Three Ghost Friends: Learn About Shapes with my 18-month-old daughter:
This book is available at Amazon.com in paperback and at iTunes as an ebook for iPad/iPhone: