The usefulness of details |

The usefulness of details

by Maggie O'Neill
Bordewich-Bray Elementary School students Eric Reymus, left, and Austin Portch, both 7, help children's author Gary Hogg with a presentation about writing children's books Monday. Top photo: First-grader Devon Ames watches as children's author Gary Hogg tells stories and talks about writing skills. Cathleen Allison Nevada Appeal

hildren giggled Monday at Bordewich-Bray Elementary School as author Gary Hogg donned bright pink ’50s-style sunglasses, a pink-fuzzy hat and a multi-colored mumu.

Hogg, dressing up as the hippy, Beautiful Buella, was making a point to the first- and second-graders about the usefulness of details.

“Listen carefully,” he said. “Remember we were talking about it raining cats and dogs?

“Which is better? ‘Run for it, lady, here comes a dog’ or ‘Run for it, Martha. Here comes a poodle’?” the children’s author asked.

Laughter continued when Hogg put bull horns and a pink mohawk on second-grader Eric Reymus and giant-sized black glasses, a snout and a large blue bow with polka dots upon second-grader Austin Portch’s head as he finished up the story about Beautiful Buella.

“When I write, I put in a lot of details,” he said. “Colors are good details that make your story sound better. Sizes are good details. Places are good details. Names are good details.”

Hogg, the author of 17 books including Spencer’s Adventures series, spent the day at Bordewich-Bray, giving advice and practicing writing techniques with students of all grade levels.

Jackie Geraets-Rauh, second-grade teacher to Eric and Austin, was pleased the author came to the school.

“Kids can see who writes a book instead of going into the library and thinking ‘Who writes that?'” she said.

The school’s parent-teacher organization paid for Hogg’s visit at Bordewich. Last year, he visited Fritsch Elementary School, said Principal Susan Keema.

“Since writing is one of our school improvement goals, we thought we’d have him come in and excite the kids about writing,” she said.

Rita Wilkie, a student in Geraets-Rauh’s second-grade class, said she enjoyed listening to Hogg and seeing her friends dressed as farm animals.

“I learned that you have to put in details, so people know what you’re talking about,” she said.

For information on Hogg’s assemblies, call (801) 745-3102.

Contact reporter Maggie O’Neill at mo’ or 881-1219.