As you may recall, we discussed which genres and book categories to list “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” in a few weeks ago. If you missed it, here is a link to the original post→ Lost in Quandary Without a Compass.
After a good deal of follow-up discussion and being allowed two categories in which to enter, we decided one would be “Juvenile→Fiction→Animals→Bears.”
From the very beginning, the stories have been written with children in mind as well as adults, so the first selection of “Juvenile” seemed like a no-brainer. Although Red certifies that all of the adventures really did take place exactly as described, we were required to list the book in “Fiction”, lacking photographic proof or evidence to back up his assertions. The next step was easy, as the stories feature a good number and wide variety of wildlife, domestic farm animals, birds and such, so “Animals” seemed straightforward enough.
But then we came to the next grouping to narrow it down even further. With it being “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” there was clearly only one choice– “Bears.” Simple enough– right?
But here’s the rub. We then realized that stepping into that ring would put us in direct competition with not only one, but two heavyweight champions in the field. Titans of the literary world– Winnie the Pooh and Paddington Bear! And they’re both that cute and cuddly teddy bear, golden brown color, to boot.
But we just don’t see any viable alternative. It’s not like Red is afraid of them or anything, as he is a real bear and not a cartoon drawing or stuffed teddy bear, after all. He just always tries to peacefully avoid confrontation whenever possible. An admirable trait to be sure. Nevertheless, don’t let their cuteness fool you. Pooh and Paddington are rock stars in the field. Literally– movie stars! These two fluffy ruffians dominate their category and squish competitors like a blueberry on a walking path without even breaking stride!
It would basically be starting over, but I asked Red if he would like me to recast him as a chipmunk or squirrel, to maybe compete against Chip and Dale or Rocky instead. But as he pointed out, we had already signed on Scritch the Chipmunk and Rusty the Fairydiddle for the second collection of stories and Red didn’t want to put them out of work, just to take their place. He’s a nice guy like that. And too, it would be incredibly difficult for a chipmunk or squirrel to pull off some of the feats in the stories which Red did as himself– a bear. So it looks like we’re committed to the “Bears” category. No other choice, really.
But I’ll admit it. I am a little worried. I know that Winnie the Pooh is all about his honey, and so is Little Red Bear. I just hope there’s enough honey to go around for everyone. But Paddington is into marmalade, so that shouldn’t be an issue, as long as he stays on the jammy side of the tracks. They are all really good sorts though, so I’m sure they’ll share and work it out. I hope.
There is one notable thing that separates Red from the others. He is a real bear and these are real bear stories with real bear action. Or as close as they can be given that he is so uncommonly special– walking on two legs, talking and wearing overalls and a straw hat as he does.
So, just to be safe, a word of caution is probably in order — these are not your mother’s Winnie the Pooh, picture book style, cuddly teddy bear stories. Just sayin’. There are a few honest-to-goodness, real backwoods varmints and perils in these stories.
Also, before I forget, Red wants me to remind you that “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” short stories collection will be released next Tuesday, June 23rd for Kindle and eReaders, and may be preordered on Amazon. Paperback print copies of the book are available for immediate shipment and delivery right now! And if you’re not sure how the preorder process works, you just hit the preorder button on the Amazon site, they don’t bill you until the actual book is downloaded on the 23rd, and magical elves work to install “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” automatically into your Kindle or other device overnight while you sleep. Couldn’t be easier, and that way we don’t run the risk of forgetting to go back and order it and avoid having to wait in long queues backed up behind the inevitable crowds on the actual release day on Tuesday. You can be comfortably enjoying the stories at home with a cup of tea and cookies while the late-comers are anxiously waiting in line!
And, one last thing– as a favor– if you happen to come across Pooh or Paddington strolling about anytime, please let them know that Red’s not looking to dethrone anybody or take anyone’s title belt. If they could just give us a wee bit of space to pitch our little book and tent, maybe on the outskirts of the forest in their kingdom, we’d be much obliged.
Thanks as always for the visit and reading along! — Jim (and Red!)