After a long and busy day, I was lying on my bed with the lights out, my two girls sprawled across the bed with me, chatting. A moment later we saw the bouncing beam of a flashlight in the hallway. It was my little guy, happily toting around the flashlight that his father had just given to him. "Dad said he didn't need this!" he said as he swung the beam back and forth before our faces.
The light flashing in my eyes was a bit annoying, but it was Daughter #2 who spoke up. "You know, those flashlights are supposed to be used for emergencies and stuff. The batteries aren't gonna last."
I turned to her, aghast! "Are you really being such a boring ol' grown-up?"
"Well," she said, "the light was bugging me so I thought I would give him a logical reason to turn it off."
He did turn it off. Maybe so that he could preserve battery power for those times when he goes exploring the depths of the crawl space under his bed.
There is a lesson in this story for us children's writers. Don't be such a grown-up! We've got to hold on to those little bits of childishness, because they are an essential part of every children's writer's toolbox.
So, go ahead. Play with your emergency flashlight. Although it might be a good idea to have back-up batteries.
P.S. Don't forget to enter my 100th Follower Contest, which ends tonight at 10:00 CST!