Normally you never hear about 20 to 30 year old men and women reading kids books, but, truth of the matter is this, in order for me to learn from the experts and the craftsmen of children’s books, I have to study and learn from them.
I started with reading and reviewing “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” and then months later researched “Big Nate.” I admit I do need to review some more of the old school “Judy Blume” books or “Captain Underpants,”, and of course we can’t forget about the young adults book “Hunger Games.”
But, let me focus on just “Big Nate” for the time being! Why do I find the “Big Nate” series so inspiring especially as a writer:
It’s Real: In the books and in the comics, Nate Wright continues to remain the same type of person. He can round off sometimes, but, somehow, the author managed to make him stay the same regardless of the lessons learned. To be honest, everyone has met a “Nate” kind of character in their life. To be honest, some of them are not nearly as funny or less annoying as Nate.
It’s Relevant: All of us have our share of troubles. Nate is constantly in it with one of his teachers. And yet, he has a favorite teacher. Nate is always trying to make something workout and happen for his good, and, like so many of our plans in the past, they have failed. But Nate has a certain resilience about himself which is always good for the main character to have.
It’s Reactive: Because of good story and character development, as well as re-use of old plots with different twists, readers come back to see what’s next. I also noticed that the way “Big Nate” is very easily written without complicated thoughts or commentary coming from Nate or his friends.
It’s Relatable: Do I really have to explain this…we all were kids once!
The comic strip has existed for more than 20 years and the characters, the stories and the experiences within “Big Nate” continue to have a refreshing art and story style and laugh factor with the likes of “Peanuts” and “Calvin and Hobbes.” Certainly will keep collecting the “Big Nate” books and reading the comics daily.