I love being surprised when I read picture books.
If a story takes a sharp turn that's great but when it's unexpected or completely ludicrous, all the better!
I love these kinds of stories so much that I want a whole picture book of them. So I am working on rough sketches for a new book called, "Two-Sided Stories", which are basically a string of two-page stories all featuring the same character, Bear.
The first page is a potentially sad or shocking intro.
The second page resolves the issue introduced on page one in a whimsical, happy way.
For example, page one might show Bear holding a school assignment with the letter "F" all big, bold, and red. Page two (on the back side of page one) shows a wider shot, where the "F" stands for "Fantastic!"
Here is an example.
Bear waited outside for his friends to arrive to his birthday party, but they never came.
Because they were already inside waiting to surprise him!
An entire story captured in two pages. Intro and denouement, completely bypassing the middle structures of complication and resolution!
What will this 2-page story structure look like over fourteen stories? I'm not sure. Probably the picture book equivalent of a Quentin Tarantino movie but without the gratuitous language and violence, although the stories are still in draft form so who knows? It might get dark.
I'll post more sketches and stories as I go so you can see things as they progress. I hope you like them!