28. Feb, 2017

Why On Earth Did I Write A Book About "Poo"?

I’ve been so excited with my book launch these past weeks, I’ve forgotten to introduce myself and my inspirations for writing.

How on earth did I come to write a picture book, for pre-school and early primary readers, about toilets and poo, of all things? 

I’ve always been a career-woman in project management, working in and around the creative industries. I thrived on working to a plan.

Four years ago, however, everything changed. My husband and I welcomed a son into the world and my ordered career and life went out the window. Though I kept working full-time, it was during a hiatus between jobs that the cobwebs cleared and I found the inspiration to pick up a pen again. Just being with my son sparked my observational skills and a long-dormant creativity. The way he viewed the world was so utterly simple and beautifully innocent, it gave me a chance to look at domestic life in a new way. 

My son hero worships his father and often asks, "What is Daddy doing?" I usually explain in the simplest terms but as we all know, the behaviours of adults are never that simple. There can be subtexts and motivations that children just don't see. 

One such behaviour inspired me to the point that I came up with an oft-used domestic catchphrase: - "Daddy's doing the world's longest poo", code for, "he spends ages on the toilet". I kept saying that I should write a book about this as ideas took shape in my head and my husband, who thankfully understands irony and can take a joke, encouraged me to do so.

We laugh at ourselves in our house. It’s what keeps us sane through the ups and downs of parenting a turbo-charged four-year-old and of course, the quirks of married life. 

And so, my little rhyming book about poo (but not really about poo) was born. I have an honest and irreverent sense of humour and I write from life. EVERYONE (I don’t care what you say!) knows someone that loves spending ages on the toilet. What do they do in there? A long poo can often be a metaphor for just needing some alone time and herein lies the humorous and light-hearted premise of my book.  

On surface level, little kids are obsessed with poo and toilets and the idea of a daddy hiding away to do the world’s longest poo, sparks endlessly fascinating imaginings. On a more sophisticated level, parents, or grandparents, reading with the book with their children, will recognise that the toilet and poo is just a ruse. "Toilet procrastinators" just love some time out reading, or escaping reality, even if just for a few minutes (or until they are found out!). 

In writing Daddy and the World's Longest Poo, my intention was to draw on a relatable incident from life to intrigue and entertain children and make big people laugh with its cheeky humour. Really, it’s just as simple as that!

And if you don’t believe me, check out two of my favourite reviews: - one from children’s Author Rose Collins and the other from a real-life Dad who got the joke!