One of my sons, Elliot (the tallest of the kids in the photo), loves to make things up. I don’t mean the dog ate my homework, I mean he loves to make up his own games, tell stories that he thinks are fun and is, in general, a really creative kid.
When he was in first grade during creative time in class he started writing a story. I cleaned it up a little but basically, what you see below came directly from the mind of a 7 year old (he’s 8 now).
It is part of a longer chapter book I’m coaching him on writing for other kids his age. Knowing that dude and his drive, he will get it done.
So I bring you Chapter One of The Adventures of Hammy and Sam — The Fix Mix
Hammy was so glad his parents finally got him a dog, it was something he wanted for as long as he could remember. He had to convince them he would be a good dog owner, and take care of his pet. They finally agreed. It was a day he was sure he would remember for the rest of his life.
He and his dog Sam had been best friends ever since, it was more than a year now. Other than his dog Hammy loved being in the second grade but he was always bored on rainy days.
On this rainy day he decided he would play with Sam, until it was time for the dog to take a nap which seemed to happen every afternoon.
Sam is a Golden Retriever. Sam was big, he weighed almost 70 pounds, and that meant when he was on a leash Hammy had to hold on really tight so Sam wouldn’t get distracted and chase a squirrel into traffic. It also meant that Sam had really long fur that Hammy was responsible for cleaning off the furniture, and that the dog really loves to chase a ball and bring it back. They could spend hours doing this, and Hammy liked to try to throw it someplace Sam would have trouble finding it. He laughed every time the dog got confused.
Hammy was throwing a ball for Sam, and had been for a while. What Hammy didn’t know was the reason Sam brought it back so often was that he really liked seeing Hammy smile, and it seemed to bring his friend pleasure.
Because of the rain they were playing in the upstairs hallway of their house. Sam would run as fast as he could toward the ball, and when it bounced off a wall he would slide trying to stop and change directions making Hammy laugh every time.
This time Hammy was going to go for a record. Sam brought the ball back, set it at the boy’s feet and Hammy threw it as hard, as far, and as fast as he could. Sam ran after it as fast as his paws could carry him on the slippery floor.
The ball flew into the closet where his mom kept all the clean sheets and towels. Sam couldn’t find it and started to search, and whine. Sam kept looking back at Hammy with a worried, almost panic stricken expression on his doggie face.
Hammy called to his dog, “SAM! Come here boy, we have more toys!”
His dog did not come.
Something really seemed to be bothering him more than a lost tennis ball should.
Hammy decided to help him search for the ball. “Sam, next time I call you I want you to come, we have more tennis balls you silly dog,” the boy said.
When Hammy got to the other end of the hall he looked in the closet and saw something he had never seen before. In the back of the closet, behind all the stuff his mom put in there was an elevator!
“Sam, when did the house get an elevator, and where does it go, the kitchen right below us,” Hammy asked his beloved pet.
Hammy pushed the button to call the elevator, but it didn’t work. The two best friends went to the garage to borrow some tools from Hammy’s dad.
They worked hard, forgetting about the rainy day. Hammy tightened screws, he banged on things with a hammer, and still the elevator did not work. Finally, Sam noticed a switch on the bottom of the wall. He had never seen that switch before, but it looked just like a light switch. He pushed at it with his paw, he pushed again and again, finally it moved!
Hammy saw the dog move the switch and decided maybe he should try to push the elevator button again.
The button lit up!
The elevator started making a noise, and the doors opened with a BING.
Hammy and Sam looked inside, not sure what was going to happen next.
It looked just like a normal elevator, kind of like the one in the mall. But where did it go? It was in a closet? Maybe it was just a shortcut to the kitchen.
The two friends walked into the strange elevator and pushed a few of the buttons just to see where the doors would open. The doors closed and it started to move, going down. Then, it started to spin. It spun faster and faster.
After what seemed like minutes the doors opened, and it wasn’t in the kitchen.
They slowly stepped out to get a better look, not believing their own eyes.
They saw a strange land. It had trees, hills, and flowers they had never seen before. The flowers came in all sizes, some taller than Hammy and what seemed like a never ending number of color choices.
They could hear birds, Hammy thought they might be hawks but he wasn’t sure.
There was a sign, the two made their way up to it. Sam looked at Hammy, not sure what to think.
“Sam, the sign says be careful the elevator disappears in two hours!” Hammy explained.
“Two hours? Disappear? Should we go look around or just go home?” Hammy asked, not sure what to think of any of this.
Hammy never dreamed his dog would answer but Sam said, in words Hammy could understand, “I don’t know Hammy, but whatever we go, we better hurry back!”
“What?” Hammy asked, totally surprised. Sam talking surprised him more than the elevator in the closet!
“This place must be magic. I can talk here!” The dog said. The golden retriever seemed just as surprised as Hammy at what was going on with his new talent.
They had no idea where they were, but Hammy was sure of one thing.
A great adventure was about to begin.