We had the lovely opportunity to have Eden and her sisters come by our store to show us their very own picture book "Ekor's Tail". We were so encouraged to learn about these bright young authors (aged 10, 8 and 4!) and how they came up with the story. Here is Eden to tell you more about her book:
A TALE ABOUT TAILS
My name is Eden. I am ten years old, and I love reading and writing. My latest project is a picture book called “Ekor’s Tail”, which is designed for young readers aged 4 to 8.
Ekor’s Tail is a story about a lion who is born without a tail. Ekor explores all around Singapore trying to find his tail. In fact, Ekor is actually a merlion and he doesn’t realise how special he really is until one day his tail grows. The word ‘ekor’ means tail in Malay. There are many play-on words and alliteration in the book.
I wrote the words, and my younger sisters – who are aged eight and six – did the illustrations. My middle sister is really talented and imaginative at drawing. Ekor’s Tail is the second book that I have written – the first one I did the illustrations by myself, so I was really glad to have my little sisters help out with this one.
WHY WE WROTE THE BOOK
We wrote the book as a project during our June school holidays. My sisters and I enjoy reading and exploring the outdoors. We wanted a really really fun book that was about Singapore. We were inspired by iconic children’s books from other countries like Possum Magic by Mem Fox, and Uni the Unicorn by Amy Krouse Rosenthal. Many picture books about Singapore we feel don’t have too much magic in them! We hope by writing this we can encourage families to get out and explore places and foods around the island.
The book is written partially in rhyming prose. It was really hard to find so many rhyming words, so we needed to use the dictionary quite a bit. We had hoped to translate the book into Mandarin too, but because of the rhymes it hasn’t been possible for us to achieve this just yet. That’s a future project.
Drawing the pictures was another challenge. My sisters drew the pictures with magic markers, which is the same way the Mr Men books are written. The pictures are really bold and bright. Illustrating took much longer than writing the story. We had to make sure the illustrations were not just appropriate for the story, but that they fitted on the pages and that we kept the drawings consistent across all 34 pages, despite being drawn by two different people.
THE SILVER LINING
Even with these challenges we didn’t give up. In the book, Ekor also didn’t give up and he ended up with a beautiful shimmering silver tail. We gave the first copy of our book to Singapore Prime Minister Lee, and he shared it with his grandchildren.
Today, we are very happy to share our book with you as part of the SEA APPLE collection. We want to encourage all children in Singapore to follow their passions and enjoy their childhoods.
Ekor's Tail now retails both online and at our store at United Square.