I’m a bastard. I’m a bastard with a heart, but I’m still a bastard. That all said, I’ve been shopping a children’s book the past couple of weeks. It’s been a trying experience since it’s always been a dream of mine to write books for kids.
The main reason why the publishers aren’t interested in my books is because they aren’t sure who I’m writing the book for. I keep telling them I’m writing for the 6-8 year olds and they keep coming back to me and telling me the things I cover are too mature for that age group.
It’s hard not taking offense to that criticism, even though I see their point. I just feel that if I was told certain things when I was in that age group I would have had a leg up on life. For instance one of the topics I cover in my book is what to tell a cop when he asks to search your car. I think it’s utterly important that children know their rights. Now, I don’t think little 6 year old Jimmy Tiwiliger is going to have six blunts in his back pack – I just want to create a foundation of knowledge.
I cover some other racier thing, but again, these things are really meant to inform the kids. For instance I have an entire chapter on parties. I focus primarily on what constitutes sexual assault and rape. Did you know that a drunk person cannot legally consent to sexual intercourse? I don’t want little Tommy Tindersnacker to find this stuff out the hard way in college.
There’s even a section in my book regarding personal appearance. Now, my audience shouldn’t be hitting puberty for another couple of years, but I include some sidebars on the best ways to shave your pubes and what hair removal agents to steer clear of. Again, creating a foundation of knowledge is incredibly important. I don’t want little Danny Diggler getting second degree chemical burns on his scrotum because he decided to use Nair one day.
The publishers seemed interested in the message of the book, but continually questioned the audience. I was adamant that I wanted this book to be published for the 6-8 year old demographic. They countered that it would be best if it was re-written and re-targeted for the 18-30 demographic.
I’m still consistent in my belief that this book is best suited for young children. The kids of today are growing up faster. We’re ingesting hormones that are making our kids hit puberty quicker. Maybe today a 6 year old doesn’t need to know how to shave his balls; and maybe today a 7 year old girl doesn’t need to know how to calculate how many drinks it would take to get drunk. But it’s not the kids of today I’m concerned for. It’s the children of tomorrow. The uber-seed who are reaching puberty before they get out of diapers are the kids for whom I am writing this book.
Just like their ABC’s, cursive and arithmetic, these kids need a foundation of knowledge. I know I wish someone would have told me Nair was going to burn the hell out of my balls. I want to be that guy who can sit down with a kid and frankly say to them, “if a cop wants to look in your car you tell him no. If he persists you ask that fucking pig if he’s got a warrant.”