Thursday, December 18, 2008
Day's End Lullaby by Karen Cioffi and Robyn Feltman
Day’s End Lullaby is a tender and charming illustrated children’s book. From a reminder that the sun has set and all beloved toys are awaiting tomorrow’s play, Day’s End Lullaby soothes and quiets even those children who struggle against sleep. The authors’ artistry found in their understanding of the sense of security needed by children at bedtime.
“Your day’s been long and full of fun. But, now you’re much too tired to run,” sings the parent to the child in the lullaby. Day’s End Lullaby has lyrical and rhyming phrases along with a rhythmic flow.
Author Cioffi composed the poem and music over 30 years ago to help her first born fall asleep and then again for her second child. She saw positive results in singing it and now she sings it to her two-year-old grandson. She reassures him, “The sun has set, it’s out of view. The moon’s now shining bright for you.”
Authors Cioffi and Feltman wrote and illustrated Day’s End Lullaby as a loving book to comfort little ones and provide a sense of security at bedtime. The simple and colorful illustrations are intended to hold the child’s attention while the parent’s soothing voice helps the child gently drift off into a peaceful slumber.
Interview with Karen Cioffi:
How did you come up with the idea for the book?
I wrote the lullaby to the story over 30 years ago. My firstborn didn’t like sleeping. I sang it to her as I paced the hallway carrying her in my arms to get her to sleep and again when she’d wake in the middle of the night. I did the same thing with my second daughter and it became a family lullaby. Now my family sings it to my grandson and we will also sing it to my grandson due mid November. How it became a book is, after my first grandson came my daughter and co-author, Robyn, thought it would make a great bedtime story and here we are.
What do you enjoy most about writing for children?
Children are such a joy and source of inspiration. My co-author, who happens to be my daughter, and I are both advocates of education and reading. Reading opens new worlds to children. It can enlighten them, it can open their imagination and it can teach them. Being a part of that is just a wonderful feeling.
What is the most difficult part of writing for children?
I have a couple of problems that I’m working on. One is I need to use age appropriate words. I tend to use words that are too difficult for the age group I’m writing for. I also need to work on my “show, don’t tell,” although that one goes for all writing.
What are you working on now?
I am currently working on two picture books (around 1000 words each). One is about a child’s imagination and the other is based on an ancient Chinese tale about a young man and his dog.
I am also fine tuning a fantasy chapter book (around 6000 words) geared for ages 8-12; this is also based on an ancient Chinese tale. It is about a 12-year-old boy who wants more than anything to learn magic.
In addition, I am working on another fantasy chapter book (around 6000 words) geared for ages 8-12. This one is about two boys lost in space.