I grew up with Winnie the Pooh, so when I saw The Te of Piglet I had a “shut up and take my money” moment. I love Piglet. My stuffed Piglet is my oldest friend. If I see something Piglet at the store, I buy it (or turn into a five year old and pester my partner until he does). I also have a healthy interest in world religions and philosophies, so the book seemed to be a win-win. Benjamin Hoff kept a great deal of the whimsy of A. A. Milne’s original work, and wrote parts as though he was having a dialogue with dear Piglet. However, I was disappointed with how much he put down Tigger. I think, while Piglet has many virtues, he doesn’t have much of a place in writing. Instead, I feel writers should write like Tigger. But Kelsey, you ask, why would a hyper active tiger be a good model for writing? If we wrote like Tigger, wouldn’t we get next to nothing done?
Not so, my friends!
Keeping with the whimsical theme, I will begin to explain this concept with rhyming and pictures.
You may want to write like Pooh, but there are things that Pooh forgets to do. If Pooh sat down to write a story, I imagine he would find it boring, or he’d get distracted and wander away, perhaps in search of a donkey grey.
If you want to write like Eeyore, you better step away from the keyboard, for Eeyore often loses things, like ideas, or his tail on it’s string. He also tends to get depressed, and doesn’t like to leave the nest.
Writing like poor Piglet would be the worst, filled with so much fear threatening to burst, he’d probably like to try and write, but become filled with terrible fright, too afraid to show his work, afraid of critics that on the internet lurk, Piglet may be full of truth, but to write like him would be like pulling a tooth. Yes, to write like Piglet would be sad, but don’t worry, it’s not all bad!
Write like Tigger, enthusiastic and proud, don’t be afraid to get a little loud, learn every day and observe your friends, and you’ll find you’ll write stories to the end!
Tigger, of all the characters, shows the most zest for life and adventure. Tigger is not afraid to do what he wants—even if he winds up doing it alone. As writers, we must love life, or at the very least, love aspects of the world around us. Do you want to read a story written with no enthusiasm? Then don’t. At the same time, we cannot be afraid to be alone. I’ve written before
about how writing isn’t purely solitary, but a writer must be prepared for some degree of loneliness. If Pooh and Piglet (mostly Rabbit, to be honest) don’t want to join Tigger on his adventures, then Tigger goes alone. Writing is your adventure, don’t be afraid to walk some parts of the path alone.
Tigger is passionate and cares deeply about his friends. A writer should care deeply about their work. They should show pride, show love, show displeasure. Work you don’t care about won’t gain any readers. It’s like having a conversation with a friend who’s only half awake.
Tigger appears to be kind of a joyful idiot. However, despite his joyful and oblivious exterior, he has keen observations. For example, Tigger always seems to notice how Eeyore feels–even if Tigger’s attempts to ‘help’ Eeyore often go terribly wrong. Writers need keen observations to succeed. As a writer, you will have to find ways to explain behavior, ways to describe people, places and things.
Tigger is not afraid to admit when he fails, and he gets back up. For example, in The Tigger Movie, Tigger gets low when he realizes that he truly is the only one of his kind.
Tigger also freely admits when he screws up, with some prompting occasionally.
In your writing career, you are going to fail. I’m 21 and I already have failed projects and rejections under my belt. Most writers, more than I can summarize here, say they fail 97% of the time. But what seperates writers from the aspirers is that determination to get back up. That determination to admit, I failed. I’m low.
It’s okay to be low. Everyone goes there. And it is really okay to fail. Literally everyone has.
What matters is the ability to bounce back.
I made a pinterest board to go with this post!