The newly formed Eye Write It Project promotes early literacy through a series of picture books without words. The early learner makes inferences from the connected illustrations, and is encouraged to write out these inferences in bursts of narrative prose. Simply put, they tell a story, a book-length story. They get a sense of the interior life of books, and participate in that degree of literacy, long before they acquire the skills to traditionally do so. Stickers in the form of blank lines provide for the young reader’s narrative, as well as character stickers, to embellish the child’s plot. Kids can write in the dialogue bubbles. Or the floating thought clouds. They can draw. Go off script. In the end, children have a book that they themselves have written, complete with a title, byline, and a place for the author’s photo.
The Eye Write It Project is: Layne Maheu, author of two literary novels, Song of the Crow, 2006, Unbridled Books (starred review, Library Journal, June Pick Sense Pick) and Man of the World, 2021, Chatwin Books. I’ve been the reading specialist at a Montessori School, a secondary school wood shop teacher, and an instructor of adult fiction at Seattle’s Richard Hugo House. I’ve worked for decades as a carpenter and crewed on commercial fishing boats.
Chris Satterlund, has been in the bookselling and publishing business for forty years, twenty six spent as an independent bookseller and owner in two stores and fifteen years with Scholastic as a field rep. Her passion has always been childrens’ books. It’s where a person learns who they are in the world, by reading.