All I did was write some sentences and leave blanks and it went all crazy from there..
And "The Cat who ate a Dog" was created.
You can see where I left the blanks. After the kids - mostly Kindergarteners and first graders - filled in words, I did an illustration - with much discussion amongst everyone, of course.
For some reason, the hilarious phrase of the day (because there's always some hilarious phrase of the day) was, "I dunno!" So the Vet, who had to examine the cat who ate the dog, was named "Dr. I. Dunnow."
Suddenly, there was a bark!
Dr. I Dunnow wasn't the smartest guy ever - so he said, "You're not a dog..."
Then the much smarter nurse showed up and removed the dog. Everyone was much amused by the expanding cat in this one.
And then, a joyous ending.
One of the students added a portrait of me at the end, as the author.
I always recommend doing the cover last - so one of the Kindergarteners, Katherina, obliged, adding an illustration and putting in her own blanks for her name and mine.
Once this was done, it was passed around and read aloud numerous times.
Kids have such storytelling ability - it is like a flight simulator for their brain. All it takes is some blank spaces, and a grownup willing to capture their ideas and put them down, for a wondrous book to take shape.