Author of the Month - Sydney S.
We’ve featured such great stories this year. We’re finishing up the year with a magical adventure! December’s story is “The Dragon and the Girl” written by Sydney. Let’s dive into the enchanting tale that introduces us to a family of dragons!
Sydney was playing a dragon game with her Pa when the mail came in. Sydney ran to get it and there was a scroll addressed to her. It’s from the mom dragon! She needs help taking care of one of the baby dragons. She was the runt of the litter and was very small. Sydney is excited to help.
Back at school, there is a field trip planned that is going to where the family of dragons live. Sydney plans to sneak off the bus and climb to the mountaintop to the cave where the dragons live. She just has to be with the mom and dad dragon to help.
“Roar, roar, roar, roar!” says the mom dragon. They speak Wingscale language but Sydney can understand and translate the language. The mom dragon leads Sydney to the four baby dragons. Sydney sees the smallest one who is sitting and looking hungry.
Sydney has two carrots in her pocket, just what the baby dragon needs. Sydney asks mom dragon if she can feed the dragon the carrots. Mom dragon says yes and dad dragon says that the baby is shy.
Sydney takes a carrot and kneels on the floor. The baby dragon jumps and flies by and snatches the carrot! Sydney decides to save the other carrot for later and tries to figure out how she can help the baby dragon be less shy.
Each day, Sydney goes to the dragon nest. Nothing stopped her from visiting, not even rain, snow, or the blazing sun. It took a couple of days, but the baby dragon started coming up to Sydney as soon as she saw her at the top of the rock. The baby dragon is very friendly. It helps that Sydney is so kind to her.
Each day, Sydney brings food: lettuce, carrots, tomatoes, fish, tuna, meat, and chicken legs. For dessert, the dragon gets grapes, bananas, oranges, and peaches. But the favorite is bananas.
One day, Sydney is making her way up to the top of the rock and she is horrified to see that it appears that the baby dragon has passed away.
The next day, Sydney doesn’t plan on going to the nest because she is so upset… but she decides to go anyway. As she makes her way back up, she realizes that she was wrong! The baby dragon had just passed out!
Sydney explains to mom dragon what had happened the day before. They try to figure out what may have caused the baby dragon to pass out… they can rule out all the food but still have no clue.
Sydney comes to the cave the next day and finds the carrot that she has hidden. The baby dragon was getting more and more curious. Sydney calls the baby dragon, Tiny. As Sydney calls out Tiny, a cat climbs into the cave.
“Help,” says Tiny in a sick voice. Sydney frantically asks if she is okay. “Cat,” says Tiny. The cat meows and purrs and next thing you know, Tiny faints!
As it turns out…Tiny tells Sydney that she is very scared of cats. They see the cat over the cliff’s edge. “Save me! Help!” Tiny yells out. Sydney says, “...when you’re old enough, and you go to have your own family, you can’t be afraid of anything. You’re a dragon!” Tiny sighs, “I guess you are right, Syd.”
Two years have passed. Sydney is climbing up the mountain with a cat when she slips. “Help!” she yells out. The three-year-old Tiny comes flying out to help her. Tiny grabs Sydney and the cat. Sydney is surprised that Tiny doesn’t faint and asks Tiny about it. Tiny says, “Well, my mom and I worked on getting me used to cats. It worked!” Which was great news.
Sydney has been living with Tiny for two and a half years. She can’t believe that Tiny is turning three. Time is flying by and Tiny has grown her adult wings and tail. Flying to save Sydney and the cat named Tiggy was the first time the mom dragon had let Tiny fly outside.
At that moment, Sydney’s pet owl, Sullivan comes flying in. He has a message for her! “Hide! Danger is coming! I repeat, hide!” He warns her.
Sydney warns the rest of the dragon family who start to hide. But Sydney stays behind to figure out what the danger is. Sullivan tells her that he saw a family of fire dragons! The ladder that was on the side of the mountain bursts into flames! The fire dragons had reached them in the cave. But at the same moment, water came gushing from above. It was water dragons, they put the fire out! What a relief!
But they weren’t safe yet, the wood frame at the entrance of the cave burst into flames. Sydney needs help! Tiny and her dragon family come out to help.
Sydney’s cape is stuck. Tiny swoops over Sydney, grabs her from above, and puts her on the dad dragon’s back. She is safe! But at the moment they hear mom dragon yelling for Sydney to run. Tiny swoops in and grabs Sydney.
The cave was on fire! But they find safety in the forest. They gather wood, berries, and find a deer for dinner.
The next morning, as they are packing up the campsite, Sydney walks out to see poor Tiny get bitten by a snake. Oh no!
Tiny can’t see after being bitten by the snake. Luckily, Sydney has her trusty book about snakes. They find out it is a Diamond-Blind Cobra and it does cause blindness, but only for a month.
What a relief!
Sydney leads the dragons in the forest. She knows it very well, as it’s her family’s forest! She leads the dragons to the lake where they can find lots of fish and clean water. They reach the lake and they get ready to go for a swim… but Tiny finds out that the lake is very deep. Tiny lets out her deepest secret, she is afraid of deep water.
Sydney is very understanding and they proceed to dig a shallow pond just for Tiny. The whole family helps out. But now they have to figure out where to get the water to fill it. Rainwater would take too long. They finish digging the hole and the rain dragons fly over and fill the pond! Tiny can enjoy the water and soothe her snake bite.
A few days pass, and it’s time to start moving on. Sydney leads them to her house. She offers up a gray shed for the dragon family to stay in. But it is too small for the whole family to live in. The dragon family needs to go back to their cave and rebuild. Mom dragon knows that Tiny and Sydney are close and offers for Tiny to stay and live with her.
“Tiny, do you want to stay with me? Sullivan, what do you think?” asks Sydney. She wanted to know their opinions. Tiny decides to stay! She can always visit her mom and dad. They watch with tears in their eyes as the dragon family leaves to go back home.
Sydney feeds Tiny her favorite banana snack. Mom dragon flies back to say, “We will all send notes every so often and visit too.” Sydney and Tiny say bye as the mom dragon flies back home.
Now that Tiny is with Sydney, she asks if Tiny wants to change her name. Tiny decides she wants to. Sydney decides on the name Mace. It fit the dragon perfectly as her magical element was red pepper spray.
The snake venom was wearing off and Mace could finally start to see Sydney. She liked her new name and soon it would be time for her and Sydney to go on more adventures!
Thank you, Sydney for letting us feature your story! Keep reading to see what Sydney had to share in her interview.
Read the Full Interview:
Where did you get your Lulu Junior kit? Who gave it to you?
I got my Lulu Junior book kit for my 10th birthday. A good friend, Emma Hale, gave it to me.
Where did you get your idea for your story?
Several birthdays ago, my mom got me a customized dragon journal, because I love dragons. Over the next few years, I wrote a story in that journal. I then rewrote parts of the story for the book kit.
How does it feel to be a published author?
Being a published author is very fun and interesting. When I grow up, I plan to publish more books.
What's the one piece of advice you'd share with another young writer?
Don’t try to copy another’s style of writing. Stay with your own style; that is you.
What do you like to do when you're not writing?
When I am not writing, I like to draw, read, play with my pets, and do crafts.
Do you prefer writing or illustrating? Why?
I prefer illustrating because I am making the story or subject seem to come to life. I bring the story out of my imagination for the reader.
What's one of your favorite books?
My favorite book is from a series called Warrior Cats. My favorite book from the series is called Into the Wild. It is the first book.
How do you like to set up your writing/drawing space?
I like to organize my drawing and writing materials on my project desk.
What inspires you to write or draw?
I like to write about and draw my pets a lot. They are often my inspiration. The rest of the time, my work is from my imagination.
What do you want people to remember about your book?
I want readers to remember that even in a fantasy world, working together is just as important as it is in the real world.