31 Oct

It’s the end of October and you know what that means!

My Reading For Renn challenge is officially over! If you don’t know about my challenge please click HERE to learn more about it. Basically I have been trying to raise money for my friend Renn’s medical bills. Renn has uncontrollable seizures because he has epilepsy. Renn has just had brain surgery to put a grid in his head. Now the doctors have to wait for him to have a seizure so they can tell where it is coming from. Then they will take that part out.  You can read about Renn, and how he is doing, at the Brain of a Jedi blog (click HERE).

First off I want to thank EVERYONE who spread the word, encouraged me and sponsored me! I was so happy to have so many people cheering me on and wanting to help Renn and his family! 


My personal goal for the challenge was to get 150 AR points (just so you know 50 points is what my school requires me to get during the entire year). So how did I do? 


WOO HOO! Loamhedge by Brian Jacques got me 19 points to plow past 150! 😀

If you are interested in the books I read in October for the challenge, I have been keeping track of them at my “Books I read this year” page on my blog. Click HERE to go THERE!

For everyone who said they would sponsor me, I will email you this weekend to give you instructions on how to send the donation in. Thank you everyone again!


Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Susanna Leonard Hill is hosting a Halloween writing contest! Here are the rules –  write a 100 word Halloween story appropriate for children (title not included in the 100 words), using the words spookyblack cat, and cackle.   Your story can be scary, funny or anything in between, poetry or prose, but it will only count for the contest if it includes those 3 words (you can count black cat as one word) and is 100 words (you can go under, but not over)!

To read all the great entries visit Ms. Hills blog by clicking HERE!

I usually write funny stories with a twist but I am trying something new for this contest. I decided to write a scary story (which is weird because I don’t like horror stories). My entry is exactly 100 words (phew!) with black-cat as one word.

Here is my entry! I hope you like it!

The Dare

by Erik

Joseph walked out in the dark of night.

The thought of his quest gave him a fright.

Shouldn’t have taken that dare.

The street was damp and empty as well.

The cold breeze blew up in a big swell.

Shouldn’t have taken that dare.

The air filled with a spooky thick mist.

Joseph jumped back when a black-cat hissed.

Shouldn’t have taken that dare.

The full moon shone in a bloody red.

The cemetery gate was ahead.

Why did I take this dare?

Tombstones and graves abruptly appear.

A dead voice cackled in Joseph’s ear.

“Shouldn’t have taken that dare.”

I hope you liked it!



  1. jama October 31, 2013 at 6:57 am #

    *shivers* Cool story, Erik! Very evocative and I felt like I was right there with Joseph.

    Congratulations on meeting your Reading Renn goal! Hooray hooray hooray! This was a wonderful challenge; you are a good friend to Renn and an inspiration to us all.

    Have a Spooktacular Halloween! Hope you get a lot of Twix :).


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 1, 2013 at 7:23 am #

      Thank you Ms. Rattigan! I am glad you liked my poem! I did get quite a few twix (but not enough 😉 ).


  2. Andrea October 31, 2013 at 7:03 am #

    Congrats on doing so well with your reading challenge!!

    I really like you’re spooky story…especially the repetition. It really builds tension!


  3. Donna L. Sadd October 31, 2013 at 8:04 am #

    I’m so glad your reached your goal, Erik, and never doubted that you would succeed!

    Spoooky story! My kid never should have taken the dare either! ;0)


  4. stanleyandkatrina October 31, 2013 at 8:38 am #

    Fantastically spooky story, Erik. I never took dares – I was too big of a chicken. 🙂 I look forward to Neighbor Girl reading your story.
    CONGRATULATIONS on reaching your goal – I had no doubt you would pass it – you are that good. Thank you for allowing us to support Renn, too!
    ~Cool Mom


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 1, 2013 at 7:20 am #

      Thank you Cool Mom! I hope Neighbor Girl likes it. 🙂 Thank you for your support of Reading for Renn and for making that button code! That really helped!


  5. jackiewellington21 October 31, 2013 at 8:42 am #

    This was a great piece. Thanks for sharing it.


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 1, 2013 at 7:19 am #

      Thank you for your comment! Please visit my blog again! 🙂


      • jackiewellington21 November 1, 2013 at 7:30 am #

        I will. You visit mine and follow and I will visit and follow yours.


      • thiskidreviewsbooks November 3, 2013 at 4:24 pm #

        OK! Will do! 🙂


      • jackiewellington21 November 3, 2013 at 4:44 pm #



      • thiskidreviewsbooks November 3, 2013 at 4:45 pm #



  6. rnewman504 October 31, 2013 at 8:48 am #

    Erik, Your story is wonderful! Love the use of repetition. Congrats on your quest for Renn. How much do I owe you? And where to send funds?


    • rnewman504 October 31, 2013 at 8:50 am #

      p.s. Happy Halloween!


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 1, 2013 at 7:19 am #

      Thank you Ms. Newman! I will be emailing everyone this weekend with instructions on what to do. I really appreciate your support! 🙂


  7. Michelle Isenhoff October 31, 2013 at 9:05 am #

    Super job for Renn. I’ll look for your email. And love the poem!
    Have a fun Halloween tonight!


  8. Susan Cabael October 31, 2013 at 9:12 am #

    Happy Halloween! I’ll be reading your story to my class today, since we just started a poetry mini-unit. I love your repetition & mood–spooky!


  9. Cordelia Dinsmore October 31, 2013 at 9:16 am #

    Congratulations on meeting your AR goal, Erik. That’s a lot of reading. Your Halloween poem is a work of art. You have some real talent that I hope you continue to nurture. It will bring you and others much pleasure throughout your life. Thanks for sharing.


  10. nicole snitselaar October 31, 2013 at 9:25 am #

    Geart story to read


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 1, 2013 at 7:16 am #

      Thank you for your comment and for stopping by my blog! Please come again! 🙂


  11. Darlene October 31, 2013 at 9:45 am #

    Congratulations on 165 points! You are truly amazing. I look fiorwrad to your email this weekend. Your story rocks!!!


  12. Kirsten W. Larson October 31, 2013 at 9:46 am #

    Way to go, Erik! I’m looking forward to paying up for a great cause.


  13. julie rowan zoch October 31, 2013 at 11:00 am #

    MORE! MORE! MORE! What a great mood you’ve set! Gives me the shivers! I had already donated what I could to the Telles family, but you’re success inspired me, and so without further ado, I donate every last coin in every last jar in the house (may take a while – there are quite a few!) Don’t worry, I won’t be sending it all to you to count!


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 1, 2013 at 7:15 am #

      Thank you Mrs. Rozo! I have to tell you the line “Mrs. Rozo’s gate creeked in the wind” was in my second draft of my poem but I had to take it out because I had too many words. 😦 😉
      I really appreciate all your support and for designing my buttons! That was a HUGE help! THANK YOU!


      • julie rowan zoch November 1, 2013 at 12:02 pm #

        That’s because that gate is tough to open – even in a poem!


      • thiskidreviewsbooks November 3, 2013 at 4:33 pm #

        You’re right! I’ll come right over for tea – if I can get past the gate! 😉


  14. Beth Stilborn October 31, 2013 at 11:48 am #

    Oooooooooh, what a wonderfully spooky story/poem, Erik!!! That repeating “shouldn’t have taken that dare” is fantastic for increasing the tension.

    WOW, Congratulations on all those AR points! You ROCK!!!!!!!


  15. Patricia Tilton October 31, 2013 at 11:53 am #

    Great spooky Halloween entry, Erik! Liked the repetition.

    Congratulations for your heartfelt effort to help Renn and his family. You did a super job and I hope many people made pledges. Just knew you’d go over 150 points. You are amazing! I will look for you e-mail Saturday.


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 1, 2013 at 7:12 am #

      Thank you Ms. Tilton! The repetition was hard to put in because I only had 100 words because of the contest rules. Thank you for your support for Reading for Renn too (I will probably get to email you Sunday because I have a book signing to go to Saturday 🙂 ). Have a great weekend! 🙂


  16. ontheplumtree October 31, 2013 at 12:17 pm #

    Well done, Erik for supporting Renn. What a great effort. And good luck with the contest. Certainly is a poem to make your hair curl!


  17. Catherine Constance October 31, 2013 at 12:30 pm #

    Love your poem, really enjoyed reading it.. 🙂


  18. Manju Howard (@ManjuBeth) October 31, 2013 at 12:45 pm #

    I really like the way you welcome the reader’s imagination into your story.


  19. Dave Eveleigh October 31, 2013 at 1:24 pm #

    Happy Halloween, Erik! I think William Gaines would have loved that story. Way to go on earning all those points 🙂


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 1, 2013 at 7:08 am #

      Hey – I learned who William Gaines is in All Hallows Eve. 😉 That is a huge compliment Mr. Eveleigh! Thank you! 🙂


  20. Susanna Leonard Hill October 31, 2013 at 1:59 pm #

    Oh, wow, Erik! What a fantastic spooky entry! I loved that repeating line in italics that just sounded exactly like Joseph whispering to himself… or maybe the wind whispering to him! Great job! And congratulations on exceeding your goal for Renn – I knew you would! Please email me because, although I didn’t give you an amount, I will certainly sponsor you!


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 1, 2013 at 7:07 am #

      That’s a good point Ms. Hill! I originally had it as “I shouldn’t have taken that dare” but I cut the “I” out to save words. Now that you said it could be Joseph or the wind – I like it better without the “I”. 🙂 I also used some of the things I learned in your class when I wrote this – like highlighting words and substituting them for better words (that’s how I got “abruptly” in the poem). I will email you this weekend, probably Sunday because I have my first book signing to go to Saturday! YAY! Thank you! 🙂


  21. Grannymar October 31, 2013 at 2:21 pm #

    Two goals in one month! Well done to you. I love the poem it had me spooked!


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 1, 2013 at 7:01 am #

      🙂 I hope you didn’t get too scared (it kind of creeped me out writing it 😉 )!


  22. Joanna October 31, 2013 at 2:50 pm #

    SPOOKY and awesome refrain! Huge congrats on superseding your AR points goal for Renn. You are amazing!


  23. Genevieve Petrillo October 31, 2013 at 4:22 pm #

    Super fun story, E. I’ve made up my mind. I am NEVER taking a dare!!

    Love and licks,


  24. Carrie Finison October 31, 2013 at 4:40 pm #

    Congratulations on reaching your goal, Erik! That’s a lot of reading. What a kind thing to do for Renn.

    I LOVED your story. The refrain is perfect and really adds to it.

    Happy Halloween!


  25. Penny Parker Klostermann October 31, 2013 at 4:46 pm #

    Congrats on those points! Great job!

    Loved your story. The repeated line was perfect 🙂


  26. jannatwrites October 31, 2013 at 4:49 pm #

    I like the repetition of the line about the dare! (I agree – any dare involving a cemetery should be passed up!)


  27. Robyn Campbell October 31, 2013 at 8:03 pm #

    Congrads Erik! I’m gonna pay off too. So thankful for you. 🙂

    Loved your story. That last sentence says it all! (Triple dog dare you to turn this into a picture book.):-)


  28. cherylsec October 31, 2013 at 8:25 pm #

    Erik, I LOVE this. Excellent! I really like the repetition, and the last line was terrific. Great job! And congratulations for reaching 165 points! Outstanding.


  29. readingwithrhythm October 31, 2013 at 8:50 pm #

    wickedly awesome job on both counts — overachieving on the reading goal and daring to write that spooky poem!


  30. Cathy C. Hall October 31, 2013 at 10:32 pm #

    BIG congrats on your goal–no easy feat! and big congrats on a well-told spooky story!


  31. laurimeyers November 1, 2013 at 1:37 pm #

    I don’t like it.
    I LOVE it! Very spooky. And I’m glad you “took the dare” to help Renn. Pretty amazing work!


  32. Stacy S. Jensen November 1, 2013 at 1:56 pm #

    Good job Erik. This is why I never take dares! I’m a scaredy cat.


  33. Keila November 1, 2013 at 8:51 pm #

    Really loved your poem. Kept me in suspense!


  34. viviankirkfield November 1, 2013 at 11:07 pm #

    First off, CONGRATULATIONS on doing so well in your reading challenge to help Renn. I look forward to getting your email to find out how to send you the money.:)

    Secondly, WOW…great story! The last few lines were quite chilling…and very powerful. Well done, Erik!


  35. mdhbarnes November 1, 2013 at 11:30 pm #

    Well done, Erik! The creepiness of your repeated refrain really had me hooked. (Congrats on exceeding your reading goal as well!)


  36. Patricia Weaver November 2, 2013 at 9:28 pm #

    I was scared.. good job


  37. Pamela Courtney November 3, 2013 at 1:04 am #

    First, I’m very proud of you for going above and beyond. Great job with the reading. Congrats on the book signing! Yaaaay!!! Next, LOVED you entry. Talk about taking a walk to a place that dark and spooky. And that last line, YIKES! Well done, Erik!


    • Pamela Courtney November 3, 2013 at 1:06 am #

      Oh, and email me regarding the money owed. Not sure what I pledged and wanted to make sure you get all that you earned. Again, proud to know you!


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 3, 2013 at 4:49 pm #

      Thank you VERY much Ms. Courtney! 😀


  38. Myra GB November 7, 2013 at 6:24 pm #

    Next goal: have this verse published or illustrated! Very very nice, Erik. And cheers to you for reaching your goal for Renn! What an accomplishment!


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