Thursday, November 13, 2008

Authenticity and The Velveteen Rabbit

A charming and inspiring Youtube snippet from The Velveteen Rabbit, by Margery Williams Bianco, illustrated with watercolors, read by Meryl Streep, with music by George Winston: "he wished he could become real without these uncomfortable things happening to him."

A classic story--about love and authenticity and a little toy rabbit becoming real, "For a long time he lived in the toy cupboard...."

I'm guessing the author intended this story to be about love mainly--and the way appearances cease to matter. I think it also speaks strongly to anyone who ever lived in a psychic cupboard.

If you like this post, please bookmark it on, share it on StumbleUpon, vote for it on Digg. Thanks so much.


K.B. said...

The Velveteen Rabbit! One of my very favorite books as a child...later it was The Phantom Tollbooth, then Alice (the annotated version -- I was a truly geeky child).

I've since gotten a hardback copy of The Phantom Tollbooth, and also a collector's version of the annotated Alice, but I do really need to get a nice copy of The Velveteen Rabbit...

I once tried writing some stories for children. I found that I tended to overestimate adults and underestimated the kids!

Debra W said...


That is a very interesting perspective and it speaks to some issues that I have been dealing with for quite a while. Here's to popping the doors of that "psychic cupboard" wide open. That would certainly be a bold move.


Peggy Payne said...

I can identify, K.B., with the mis-estimating. I have difficulty estimating how much a reader needs to know: what's a no-brainer and what has to laid out clearly.

I've wanted to have a brain gadget installed that takes care of this for me.

Debbie, I do wish you well with the cupboard issue. I wouldn't have guessed that you wrestled with that. But probably we all do to various degrees. If you feel like it, keep us up on the progress of that.

K.B. said...

I remember the first newspaper I worked at. The editor, bless his heart, kept sending stuff back and telling me to "dumb it down". I thought I WAS writing at a 5th grade level, and he'd tell me there were too many multi-syllabic words in there... *sigh*

Peggy Payne said...

On the day of my first newspaper job after I got out of school, the managing editor brought it back to me and said it was "macabre." That certainly stuck in my mind.

K.B. said...

LOL! What on earth were you writing about?

If I remember correctly, Word has a tool that helps you identify when you're using too much high-falutin' language. We used to call it The Big Word Zapper. :)

Peggy Payne said...

The zapper sounds pretty handy.

What I was writing about that day was the fact that fewer people had died than expected over the holiday weekend. What I wrote was maybe suitable for Halloween.