The beginings of story…

First, an announcement. I’m going to be doing a little reading/signing in Waupaca tomorrow. Friday the 6th.

Details on the tour page or on the Facebook event here.

Second, a story.

It’s a story about stories, actually. That hopefully shouldn’t come as a huge surprise to anyone here….

These days, little Oot has all sorts of words. The days of his vocabulary being a handful of words, most of which sound like “duck,” are long past.

What amazes me is how quickly some things are developing.

Today he wanted to make a pillow fort. So we made a pillow fort. Because pillow forts are awesome.

(Box forts are also awesome.)

After the fort was done, he walked across the bed, picked up a book, and brought it back to me.

Oot loves books. Sarah reads to him all the time. I read to him a lot, too, but Sarah beats me out in sheer hours, as she spends all day with him, while on a good day, I’ll only have three or four.

So he brings me a book, but it wasn’t a picture book. It’s the book that Sarah’s currently reading, my copy of Brandon Sanderson’s The Hero of Ages.

He holds the book out to me and says, “Daddie.”

This means many things. His inflection tells me that he knows its my book. But it also means he wants me to read it to him as well. He can say a lot with just one word, and I’ve become very good at interpreting in this last year.

He sits in my lap, and we put the book in front of us. (We only had three pillows, you see, so I was the back wall of the fort.)

I open the book up to the middle and point at the text. “Once upon a time, there was a little boy named Oot,” I say. “He was very nice. One day, he wanted to go for a walk. So he went outside with his momma, and he got in the wagon.”

I know he doesn’t understand all of it. But he can catch the gist. He can use a lot of these words himself. I think it sounds kinda like this to him:

“Xxxx xxxx x xxxx, xxxxx xxx x little xxx named Oot. He xxx xxxx nice. One xxx, he wanted xx go xxx x walk. Xx he xxxx outside xxxx his momma, xxx xxxx xxx in the wagon.”

I would bet serious money this is what it sounds like to him. Because these last couple of weeks, this is exactly what he talks like.

He says: “Ya ya ya ya ya ya ya daddie,” and points at a picture of me on the fridge. He’s obviously saying something about the picture of me, but he doesn’t know that the rest of the words should be. “Ya ya ya ya ya book. Ya ya ya ya ya eyaphant. (elephant)”

Anyway, I’m making up a little story for Oot. After every couple sentences I turn a page, because that’s what happens when you read a book. I know the game. We’ve done this before.

But this time things are different.

“…and he got in the wagon,” I say.

“Dog!” Oot interjects. “Bark.”

It takes me a second to figure out what he’s talking about. We keep his wagon in the garage, and sometimes the next door neighbor’s dog is out there.

“And Oot saw a dog,” I say. “And the dog barked and barked. Then momma put Oot in the wagon and pulled it.”

“Stand!” Everything he says has an exclamation point at the end of it. It’s said with such certainty. These words aren’t exclamations as much as they’re declamations. Assume that what I’m using is a declamation point at the end of his sentences.

I continue: “Then Oot tried to stand up in the wagon, but his momma said, ‘Oh no. Be careful.’ So Oot sat down in the wagon again and his momma pulled it.”

He seems satisfied with this. I turn a page.

“On their walk, they saw a tree, and a rock…”

“Geddit!” he says. “Trowit!” he moves his arm excitedly, like he’s throwing. “Air!”

“And Oot took the rock and threw it through the air.”

“Bird! Fly! Up!”

“And they saw a bird flying high up in the sky.” I pause. “Is a bird big or little?”

“Eeedie beetie,” he says in a high voice, holding out two fingers pinched close together. (itty-bitty)

“What does the bird say?”

“Teet.”

“Does a bird say, ‘Toot?'”

He shakes his head. “No.”

This makes me sad. Birds used to say, “toot.” I really liked that. It was cute as hell…

I turn the page. “Oot and momma go and have some dinner. They have soup and carrots….”

“Candy!” he says. This word is perfectly enunciated, though a little long on the “a” sound. “Caaandy.”

“First they eat soup,” I say. Doing my best to maintain rule of law, even in the story. “First chicken and pickle. Then candy.”

“Choccat!”

I didn’t know he knew that word. He must have learned it over Easter.

“Yes,” I concede, “then they had chocolate. Then they came home.” I close the book. “The end.”

This is how deeply rooted stories are, folks. We crave them before we can walk, and we start telling them before we can talk.

That’s all for now, be good to each other.

pat

This entry was posted in appearances, Oot, Sarah, Stories about stories.By Pat72 Responses

72 Comments

  1. Swamifred
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:16 AM | Permalink

    Oot is so cute! That was a good story, by the way. Compelling, and I was hoping there would be candy at the end, and I wasn’t disappointed.

  2. Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:16 AM | Permalink

    Ha! Amazing, Stories really are the benchmark for society… I’m glad your having a good time at home with the family! hope everything is well!

  3. Amanda
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:17 AM | Permalink

    You have a very intelligent kid :) careful Pat he may over shadow you one day with his stories.

  4. MidgetMe
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:17 AM | Permalink

    This was inescapably adorable. I could not pull myself away from the cute.

  5. Widow Of Sirius
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:23 AM | Permalink

    I’m kind of impressed with him. This is the most fun time in a kid’s life, because they make those attempts at a sentence, but they only know a few words of it… it’s adorable :)

  6. Marcus Cox
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:05 AM | Permalink

    This is without a doubt one of the most one of the most adorable things I’ve ever read. I really wish I would have done this when my daughter had brought me some of my books. I would always say something like “This isn’t a book for kids,” or I’d start reading it to her anyway, just to see what would happen.

    About five months ago my 2 year old brought me my copy of “The Return of the King” and asked me to read it to her. I said, “Absolutely not. If we’re going to do this, we’re going to do it right.” So I sat her in my lap and started reading her “The Hobbit.” We made it about seven pages in before she got bored and jumped off my lap. That was about five pages longer then I expected her to make it.

    • spoonyspork
      Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:05 AM | Permalink

      Yay! We’ve just started reading “The Hobbit” as a family, for background before letting my son (8) watch LoTR. We’ll also be reading those books in tandem with the movies.

      My son acted incredibly bored at first, but by the time we were at the part where all the dwarves show up at Bilbo’s place he was completely engrossed, and a short time later asked for his turn to read… and did so until it was time for bed and woke up the next morning wanting to read more.

      He’s starting a bit later than I (I read that one my own at age 4 or 5 and again a couple years later when I actually understood what was going on), but hopefully this is a start of a love for books and fantasy :D

      Also, the blog made me grin and tear up at the same time, it was just so sweet! Thanks for making my day Mr. Rothfuss :)

  7. will_eades
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:11 AM | Permalink

    BOX FORTS!! Oh hell yeah!

    Way to go Oot! Little man will be writing kick-ass fantasy in no time.

  8. astrocyn
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:26 AM | Permalink

    I love it! Thank you for sharing the story and the picture.

  9. StellaLuna
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:38 AM | Permalink

    Fantastic! When I did my PhD, I listened to people’s stories and used them as the basis for my findings. You just hear so much life in a story that you can’t get any other way.

  10. bornyesterday
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:40 AM | Permalink

    Do you ever wonder if, when Little Oot has become Somewhat Bigger Oot (and later, Big Oot), he’ll take a gander at these old blogs? I think it’ll be interesting to see his reactions, and yours. I’m 27 and my parents still occasionally surprise me with stories that I never heard before about my childhood.

  11. Mandy Swenson
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:18 AM | Permalink

    Our youngest is four and we’re holding on to “lellow” for as long as possible. We still refer to the middle child, nearly seven, as Geekob. (Jacob)

    The next phase of language is pretty fun, too. It’s not what you expect, though. It comes from the strings of words you never thought would come from your own mouth. Play-doh and toilet should never, ever be used in a sentence together. Trust me.

    Oot is going to be a huge hit with the ladies and he’ll surely have his lit/English teachers wrapped around his pinky.

  12. Arcy
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:23 AM | Permalink

    What an absolutely beautiful story. Inside of a story.

  13. Chess Piece Face
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:25 AM | Permalink

    > “Xxxx xxxx x xxxx, xxxxx xxx x little xxx named Oot.

    Don’t be so sure. Most of the research I read in over my last 10 years of having kids says that kids understand and are able to intellectually communicate long before they can physically make the words. The fad of teaching babies sign language has stuck around because having 20 extra vocabulary words as a toddler contributes to a large reduction in frustration-based tantrums. My older daughter didn’t really pick up sign language because she was telling jokes as a 10 month old. But my younger daughter REALLY appreciated being able to sign a few things that her mouth wouldn’t say.

    I’d recommend the language development chapter of NurtureShock, by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman, as a good resource for your family.

    My older daughter and I spent a lot of bed-times making up stories together. Sometimes she wanted the same one again and we developed about a dozen “hits” that I STILL haven’t taken the time to write down, though I did tape them. But then again, I’m a computer programmer, not an author like you. I look forward to buying kids books in the future by Patrick and Oot Rothfuss :D!!!

    – Jeff

    • lesleyslp
      Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:26 AM | Permalink

      Gorgeous kid…and loved the language sample.

      As a speech-language pathologist with 37 years specializing in the early stages of language learning I can verify that what Oot probably processed and understood was XXXXXXXXXXXX little XXXXXX named Oot. Popular books like that by Bronson & Merryman are not reliable sources about language development. If you want reliable information go to the ASHA.com the website of the American speech and language association.

      • Posted May 5, 2011 at 1:24 PM | Permalink

        I love it when I’m right.

        • LaisLindsay
          Posted May 5, 2011 at 2:53 PM | Permalink

          Pat and lesleyslp,
          I respectfully disagree. Receptive language develops much more rapidly than expressive language. Oot is around 18-20 months old now, yes? An average toddler of 18 months typically has a vocabulary of 5-20 words, yet can understand 200 words. While I agree that with the specific example given, Oot probably understood what you were saying as you indicated above, he is obviously processed a great deal more. Take for instance, your question: “Is a bird big or little?”
          Translated into oot-ese, this question would be xx x bird big xx little? But the response he gave indicates his understanding is beyond that. First, he likely immediately knew you were asking a question, and a response was expected. Secondly, based on his response, he was able to determine there were two options for his answer..big or little. The bird must either be one or the other, not both. Finally, he was able to use “eedie beedie” along with gestures to indicate that itty-bitty is, in fact, a degree of little. I assure you, his understanding of language far exceeds his speech. That is why you’ve become such a great one-word sentence interpreter.
          Also, for any interested, it’s ASHA.org

          • LaisLindsay
            Posted May 5, 2011 at 2:56 PM | Permalink

            Please ignore the “is” between “he” and “obviously” above. Dammit, I hate it when I miss dumb stuff like that!

        • shezzle
          Posted May 9, 2011 at 7:43 PM | Permalink

          Random thing but- Bink Nuts- this was our daughters interpretation of…. ice cubes! This was at 2 years old she explained Bink is my drink and nuts are the things you get from the fridge to make it cold, obviously it took us a while to extract that from her! Also loved Golf Wacker apparently is a golf club- we don’t play golf but have a plastic kids set in garden. Seriously you are going to love all the next lot of stuff your little one will come out with. I have more even funnier…..

    • Little My
      Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:35 PM | Permalink

      Yes, well, based on nothing I have to vote for “xxxxx little xxxxxx named Oot” (most votes wins, right?) because
      a) it reminds me of those little tally marks that Woodstock uses to speak in the old Peanuts cartoons (“||||||||||| ||||| |||||||”), and
      b) it reminds me of the Far Side cartoon about ‘what we say to dogs’ and ‘what they hear.’
      Way more entertaining than actual communication. Probably.

  14. mcvinster
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:27 AM | Permalink

    I have had a pretty shitty day so far, but this just cheered me right up.

    Reminded me of how as a kid, I loved books and couldn’t get enough of reading. Everything including instruction manuals and backs of cereal boxes. I haven’t changed much, I still see words and must read them, no matter what it is really.
    Also when I was younger, I was very good at making up names for things if I didn’t know or couldn’t pronounce the proper word. For years I called my brother Bamboo (Andrew) and a certain celebrity magician’s wig will be forever known in my family as a “Hair Hat”.

    I hope Oot grows up to have an epic beard just like his daddy.

    • Tager
      Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:53 AM | Permalink

      I tend to read the ingredients on various food items even though I have no interest in them..

  15. Baldsilver
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:55 AM | Permalink

    haha totally agree with the yayayaya birdie, its like babies feel their sentences are less cool if theyre not as long as ours

  16. Raytheist
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:09 AM | Permalink

    That was probably one of the sweetest moments you have shared with us, and I thank you. My own little one turns 3 in two months and she still uses the yayayayaya in between the words she knows!

  17. Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:44 AM | Permalink

    Already interested in Brandon Sanderson? That’s a really really good sign. :)

  18. TowelSmileGirl
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:46 AM | Permalink

    My daughter is only 8 months, and Im already worried about making up stories “on the fly” for her. I don’t work well under pressure!! I’ll probably resort to pulling tales from books I’ve read (“and then Jax stole the MOON!”)

  19. loki
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:51 AM | Permalink

    Thanks Pat.

  20. Mindy609
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:54 AM | Permalink

    Pat,
    I love your stories. They warm my heart and help me to have hope for humanity. Thank you so much for being… well, for being you.

    Sincerely,

    Mindy

  21. justajenjen
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:55 AM | Permalink

    Too cute! Nerdbaby, who’s about a month older than your Oot, I think, has a lot of words, too, some in French and some in English, and he’s picked up a few things in Spanish from daycare and Dora. Last night he was sitting on the couch and the cat was on the arm of the couch next to him. He was patting the cat and going, “Chat, Chat, Chat, kitty.” Then he touched her nose and said, “Nez, kitty nez.” Kitty did not seem impressed with learning to point out where her nose was, however.

    This morning while I was getting dressed, I took him in my room with me and he lay on the bed. He grabbed the book I had on the headboard and I told him to be nice to Maman’s book. He sat there and made up quite an interesting story that I don’t remember the first time I read Heaven’s Net is Wide. When he got done, he closed the book, set it down, and threw his hands up and goes, “Tada!” I hope he never stops saying Tada while throwing his arms up, because I love it.

  22. Merithathor
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:03 AM | Permalink

    Ah, yes…the ephemeral nature of words when young. I can imagine your sense of poignant loss, even if slight.

    I have twins, so to help pass the time and keep myself a little more sane, I’d take them on long walks around the neighborhood and to the local park every morning. I’d point out various sights along the way and talk about them. I’d talk non-stop, in between their comments, creating stories about everything I saw as we walked (or, as I walked and pushed them along in the double stroller).

    The words I heard on these walks that have since passed away:

    “Fee!” (leaf)
    “Ower!” (flower)
    “Crissum tree!” (Christmas tree)
    “Iiite? Momma? Iiiite?” (Light, aka sun)

    I miss “fee” the most.

  23. Fabio_Cristino
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:08 AM | Permalink

    I’m not sure if this is the place to ask this but i remember that Mr Pat said somewhere one or two informations about if the 3rd book would be longer or shoter than The Wise Man’s Fear. If anyone remenbers where he said that i would be much thankful if a link was posted here.
    And just to be clear Mr Pat, i’m not asking when the 3rd book will come out. I’m barely halfway through reading The Wise Man’s Fear and i think i couldn’t stand to read the 3rd book too soon. That’s in part because i’m afraid of what lies at the end of the story and part because if a story is that good i believe we should enjoy it as much and as long as possible and not hurry to see its end.

  24. chefalicia
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:12 AM | Permalink

    And Thus it is Proven that the Storyteller’s gene is hereditary.

    May it always be So.

  25. Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:18 AM | Permalink

    Oooooooooooh!!!!!! Cute!!!!!!
    mm… Somtimes i write something, and your book, “the name of the wind” is amazing!!!! no,… more!

  26. priscellie
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:19 AM | Permalink

    In fifteen years, Teenage Oot will dig out that book and say, “I could’ve sworn I remember some reference to OreSeur barking…”

    Have you let Brandon know he has a new candidate for Littlest Mistborn Fan?

  27. Andrew Roberts
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:28 AM | Permalink

    Aw, that is such an awesome story. My son’s 10 months old and we’ve reading him bedtime stories, Billy Goats Gruff, Jack and The Beanstalk etc…

    When he was really little though, only 2 or 3 months old, he wasn’t a great sleeper so when he wouldn’t go to sleep I used to curl up on the couch with him and start reading aloud whatever book I was reading at the time. He’d wail at me for a bit but after a few minutes he’s stop crying and just listen, he’s lay that way for about half an hour then fall asleep. It was really cute and gives me the big fuzzies thinking about it.

    Once he got to about 6 months old though things changed. I’d try to sit him on my lap and read but he’d keep trying to turn/rip the pages or stick them in his mouth! I stopped for a little bit but now we’re doing to bedtime stories where he stands up in his cot and we read his stories… I know he doesn’t understand but he’s a good audience, quiet and attentive. He gets all excited when he sees the book and when we’re finished he’s usually a little quieter and goes down easier… I can’t wait till he’s old enough to join in properly!

  28. alisonmarie
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:28 AM | Permalink

    Oot reminds me of my boy when he was younger (about 6 months ago)… My boy is really bossy now, he brings books to me and demands “Read it! Read it, Mommy!”
    But his bird sounds are “ock ock ock” (like a crow.) I’d take a “teet”; i’m not sure he realizes the songbirds are birds too.

  29. RainShine
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:21 AM | Permalink

    Sooo cute. Thanks for sharing the story! Er… the story of the story… haha :D

  30. Sokol
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:50 AM | Permalink

    Somewhere, floating on the web, or perhaps hidden in the depths of a box or a photo album, is a picture of me in the hospital with my one day old daughter in my lap as I’m reading “Where is Joe Merchant?” to her.

    Thanks for calling up precious memories, Pat. She is six now, and has an absolutely astounding vocabulary. This, by the way, is a two edged sword.

    Later days,
    Sokol

  31. Tager
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

    Publish it quickly! This type of story doesn’t come around often!

  32. mehawk
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 12:04 PM | Permalink

    My boys are all teens now. I have to say I know there were many moments like this over the years, but I enjoyed them and let them pass. The things like this that you write now will be the ones that are priceless to you in 20 years. I am glad that you shared with us, and I only wish I’d had the wisdom to take notes on fatherhood myself.

  33. kethdurazh
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 12:07 PM | Permalink

    This reminded me of a story a friend told me of her little boy (turning 3 soon). He says hoc-ta-toctor for helicopter.

    Wonderful story Pat!

  34. Robin the Acolyte
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 12:08 PM | Permalink

    Wow. That was awesome. What a daddy par excellence.

    I would ask if you would be my daddy too, but that might be creepy. Plus I don’t think my daddy would have wanted to share.

  35. origami
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 12:37 PM | Permalink

    Not only is this ridiculously cute and touching, it sounds like it was a lot of fun. Kids are awesome.

  36. Posted May 5, 2011 at 1:23 PM | Permalink

    That is very sweet! (and it makes me happy that Oot gets read to by you both)

  37. Thigis
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 1:30 PM | Permalink

    Well i just read your post and felt I could make enough of a contribution to go from, being a long time lurker to a first time poster. Which is basically just a link to a TED talk video about the birth of a word. So here goes:

    http://www.ted.com/talks/deb_roy_the_birth_of_a_word.html

    I wonder if your spam filter will allow it, but whatever :)

    On a side note my mom used to read to me every night and had the annoying habit of stoping at extreem cliff hangers. Which of course only encouraged me to start reading for myself.

  38. condietwo
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 2:13 PM | Permalink

    I’m not sure I can thank you for reducing me to tears with this story ~ wait. Actually, yes. I can. Thank you, Pat. That was beautiful.

  39. paixe
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 3:10 PM | Permalink

    I’m reading Hero of Ages right now, too! Except I haven’t gotten to the part about the carrots yet.

    (Srsly, this the cutest thing EVER.)

  40. Chaos
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 3:28 PM | Permalink

    That made me laugh. How…………………cute!!
    Heh, Heh.
    He said Teet. (+)

  41. justinskym51
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 5:33 PM | Permalink

    The beginNings even… ;-)

  42. James66
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 5:55 PM | Permalink

    When I would babysit, we would start out reading books and then.. act them out. I always ended up being the evil witch that was hunted by the good fairies, we had epic battles against dwarves that resembled mere stuffed toys, evil trolls, and we even went to the top of the mountain to visit the wise oracle and her awesome looking unicorn. LOL. Kids and imagination go hand in hand, it’s wonderful to see. I enjoyed this and gives me a whole slew of ideas I can do with my future kids. Thanks Pat

  43. Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:11 PM | Permalink

    Well, I must say I love your books, and here in Argentina aren’t easy to get, so I just devoured them with a feeling I hadn’t had in a looooong time of reading. 800, 1000 pages won’t ever be enough for your books. Can’t wait for the third one…and i just hope there’s an extra day for Chronicler to write it down :D

    And…yur humour.. I just love it!! …it reminds me of myself haha, Wil Sim and Kvothe, I believe they could be my very best friends!!!

    Best wishes and my humble congratulations!!!!

  44. liz
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:48 PM | Permalink

    Given the stage of language development Oot is in, you might enjoy the “ranting toddler” (who is absolutely hilarious) and the twin talk videos. The latter shows two toddlers “talking” and they really seem to be interacting with and understanding each other. Very amazing considering they’re just babbling!

    http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=1254261195230

    http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll/?p=3063

  45. missalena
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 12:24 AM | Permalink

    Dear Pat,

    A few weeks ago (shortly after the San Francisco midnight signing) I had a dream that you and Sarah wanted to go out on a date, but needed someone to watch Oot for you. So, I volunteered. As it happened, you had left instructions out that after bedtime, there was a beta copy of book 3 that needed to be read, so I set to work. Then I realized that you probably won’t have one of those ready for at least another 99 years (right before the book comes out). I was very sad and woke up after that.

    This story makes me wish my dream was true, so I could hang out with Oot. He’s such a cute, cool little boy!

    Alena

  46. nr
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 8:06 AM | Permalink

    Very cute (as in kioot)!

    Speaking of the ‘duck’ post (House on the Rock Part 1: Deadlines and Ducks) did you ever get around to part 2? Lol not meaning to be that pushy fan who complains at not getting enough free reading from an author’s blog (one baby is more than enough for you to deal with I’m sure!), just wondering if you had it anywhere :).

  47. Tungil
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 10:18 AM | Permalink

    Thank you for sharing this story! :)

  48. Joseph
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 1:42 PM | Permalink

    Hi Pat! First time poster but I love your books and had the pleasure of meeting you when you came to L.A. for The Wise Man’s Fear signing. Your humor is hysterical and your entries about your baby are very sweet. Just a huge fan, overall.

    The reason I signed up for your blog is because I’m perplexed by something in your box fort photo. Beneath your hands, there appears to be a little baby foot. I assumed this was Oot’s except the foot is pointing in the wrong direction! Can you clear this up for me? Am I just seeing things wrong and, if so, what is that beneath your hands??? Thanks!

  49. Shea
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 3:19 PM | Permalink

    I remember when my nephew was at this stage. I may be a little biased, but I think he’s a genius (yes, I’m a very proud aunt…and he’s my only nephew)! I love watching the look of comprehension that lights up his face. Now, he’s at the stage of repeating E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G! The other day he thought his puppy, Jax, peed on Nana’s couch. So, he took Jax’s face between his little hands, put his nose right up to Jax’s nose, and said “You don’t pee on Nana’s couch! You understand me boy!” I can’t wait to hear a the things little Oot will be repeating – it’ll be here before you know it!

  50. Little My
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 6:49 PM | Permalink

    Typo in the title of this blog post, by the way. Missed that earlier.

  51. M
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 6:56 PM | Permalink

    Hi Pat! I almost got to meet you at the Austin signing, but got called away before my turn came up. I wanted to tell you that Oot stories are my favorite. I have a three year old and a 15 month old. My three year old’s first retired cute word was “bahbs” for bubbles. The one I dread losing is “pokanuts”- still in use to describe polkadots.

  52. Darmys
    Posted May 7, 2011 at 9:30 AM | Permalink

    Just wanted to share a site not just with Pat, but with all of you lucky enough to have young ones.

    http://squeakyshoestories.com/

    It’s a pretty cool blog, weekly posts usually children’s stories although the last two were about the importance of reading to children, and a link to a guest blog she did on another site about how to write children’s stories.

    Anyway just wanted to share, hopefully someone finds it interesting

  53. Posted May 7, 2011 at 10:15 AM | Permalink

    That’s a fantastic story. :) Little Oot, having TWO parents that take the time to read and play and build pillow forts, is a lucky little fella indeed.

  54. QWOPtain Crunch
    Posted May 7, 2011 at 11:00 PM | Permalink

    Pillow forts are the epitome of awesome. No arguments. A teeting bird? Apparently at first you had birds that had gastrointestinal problems now you have pervert birds? I MUST come visit this area.

  55. waikeung
    Posted May 9, 2011 at 5:32 AM | Permalink

    Pat,

    I don’t mean to alarm you, but in that photo of the box fort you appear to have an Oot growing from your beard

    From a concerned fan

  56. JackofAllMasterofSome
    Posted May 9, 2011 at 6:17 AM | Permalink

    Hey,

    I love your books, pretty amazing and I worship you as a writer. I love that you blog so much stuff about your son. He’s cute. People are right, I’m sure he will over take you some day.
    I also love that you blog and comment back to people, my aim is to be like you (not exactly) when I’m older and can actually spell well enough for my writing to make sense.

    BTW I’m 14 and still make blanket forts and pillow forts, any forts are awesome!

  57. Bugaboo53067
    Posted May 9, 2011 at 6:24 AM | Permalink

    Between endless class projects and mind-numbing amounts of studying, I come here to read your blog and not think about biochemistry for five seconds. This is probably the most enjoyable part of my pre-dawn studying, though I suppose that doesn’t sound like the greatest of complements. I love these adorable little stories (especially about Oot. I’ve actually told some of these stories to my friends because they are that awesome) that have a bit of a lesson at the end- kind of like the good, old-school Buffy episodes.
    So thanks for the early morning smile and not talking about the Krebs Cycle or gluconeogenesis :)

  58. shezzle
    Posted May 9, 2011 at 7:51 PM | Permalink

    Mummy, why is that mans head growing through his hair? said LOUDLY from back seat of crowded bus about balding man at front of bus- Mummy look, look at that silly lady she has stuffed her baby up her jumper – said about quite stylish mummy in library wearing lycra baby sling which matched her top. My daughter said these things aged 2 and 3 God I love kids they are the best laugh ever! Glad you are enjoying time with your little one Pat write down everything he says it will make you chuckle in years to come.

  59. lindsayjean
    Posted May 10, 2011 at 6:36 AM | Permalink

    I can’t get over how cute Oot is! That story and especially the picture made me smile ear to ear. I bet this was so much more precious to see firsthand than it is to read about, but still very adorable. I can’t wait to hear about more Oot adventures in the future.

  60. echo
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 12:55 AM | Permalink

    Man, box forts are the best!

  61. Posted June 9, 2011 at 7:18 PM | Permalink

    There will reach a point where he will turn around and say ‘Daddy, you’re not reading this properly’, that happened between me, my Grandma and a copy of the ‘Gargoyles’ picture book. She could never again skip a sentence, haha it’s amazing how a love of books is apparent at such an early age. In my case it’s my Dad who got me into reading too, he had so many books that I didn’t have to buy my own books for years, so I figure that your child has a perfect reading pedigree! For me, kids, books…and boxforts are ultimate ‘aww’ territory.

  62. Marpepp
    Posted December 21, 2011 at 3:00 PM | Permalink

    I just finished reading the first two books of the Kingkiller Chronicles. I was so incredibly overjoyed at the chance to read such a great story – I have rarely had so much fun reading books that are being written now – that I wanted to learn more about you. Google brought me to this page on your blog. I took so much joy in reading about you and your son (I have a 1 year old) that I felt compelled to comment and thank you both for your gift of the books as well as giving me a wonderful activity to do with my book-loving son. I am extremely grateful for the wonderful few days your books gave me. I read on the train to work, I sneaked snatches by the nightlight while I rocked my son to sleep, and I fell asleep with the book on the chest for several nights in a row. It was a wonderful time and I can’t wait to read more of your works in the future. And I can’t wait to make up a story with my son. Thank you sincerely!

    Best,

    Jessica

  63. chat
    Posted February 25, 2012 at 2:09 PM | Permalink

    شات
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  64. jemnbuckeye
    Posted October 1, 2012 at 9:22 AM | Permalink

    I love the dresdin file reference!!
    ~j

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