Day 1: The Dragon Who Breathed Letters

The Dragon Who Breathed Letters


Goog (the Dragon!)

It’s true, all dragons are born from eggs!
And from a very early age, they can breath fire. But Goog was different.
(Other baby dragons, maybe in nappies, crawling, on their backs, etc, breathing fire. Goog sitting in middle of them, looking blankly at nothing)

He tried and tried, but could only breath letters!
(Goog making “Oo” expression with mouth, but the letters GOoG are tumbling out. Thin typeface, the second O is on its side in the grass, the second G is slightly buried in the ground. We must establish that these letters are solid, real objects)

As a teenaged dragon all the other dragons would laugh at Goog.
(Letters P Q L P t T OT e f q ? B dribbling out of Goog’s mouth.)

The local castle’s knights were a REAL problem, though. They kept taking all the dragon’s land, and killing them and stuff. And not one of them could speak dragon!

When the dragons protested, all the knights would hear was “ROAR!”

‘This is my chance…’ Goog thought.

But Goog didn’t know how to speak English any better than the other dragons!
(Goog, straining expression, only Q, P, o, v ? # coming out, landing in the dirt.)

Villagers used his letters as coffee tables! Others in their gardens.

Some knights would poke him, just to get letters for their kids.
(Peasant kid overloaded with letters)

One little girl seemed to be nice, though. She was always on her own. And reading books!
The little girl borrowed all sorts of books for Goog from her library.

(Goog and girl on picnic blanket under tree. Goog has an ABC book in hand, goggle-eyed, small, whistle-like “Oo” shape to mouth, rough D e F G falling out of mouth, ABC already on the ground. Girl sitting opposite him, smiling, book in her hand, too.)

Goog learned and learned!
(Book in hand, letters fallen all around: C A t letters lying in a pile with cat in the middle of them. W A t T e r letters in river, some floating, others half submerged. Girl squashed under letters G I r L. Goog is looking up at the S U n)

He even read by candlelight.
(Girl leaning out of her peasant hut window, night gown and night hat on, holding a candle up, while Goog, leaning against her wall, reads, the letters M O o N fallen by his side.)

Goog thanked the little girl and went to save his fellow dragons.
(Goog running, finger out in front, the word C H A r g E ! falling out of his mouth, trailing in the ground behind him. Girl behind, waving good-bye, the letters THaNkS lying flat at her feet.)

The human settlers had been busy while Goog was away, building shopping malls and fast food drive-throughs on sacred dragons land!
(Dragons dead, or in cages, while, in the middle of a clearing, there is a shopping centre).

By the time Goog got there, everybody was fighting!
(Dragons and knights fighting, Goog running through them all, his words falling out, nO! WAiT STOp! But everyone ignoring him.)

The knight Sir Voip the Voluminous attacked!
(Goog leaping into air, holding his bum, the word – large skinny letters – hEY! is coming out, as the knight uses his spear to stab Goog in the bum.)

“Your skull will look good on my wall!” Sir Voip called.
(Knight stabbing Goog in the belly. Goog swiping, words falling out, QUIt iT! CaN’T WE jUsT tALk?)
“Talk?” Sir Voip protested. “I’ve never heard of anything so absurd!”

Fighting was so pointless! It was time for Goog to use what he had learned.
He closed his eyes…
thought of fire…
and yelled:
(Close-up of Goog, eyes scrunched shut, lots of fighting behind him between dragons and knights)

(Words tumbling out of mouth towards startled knight, who is falling back)

(Knight splayed across top of the word. A couple of fighting dragons and knights stopping to watch.)

(Most of word SILLY compacted into ground. Knight crushed between it and the words RUSTY UNDIES Now villagers are watching, too. At least one of them is holding a baby. Most are smiling.)

and, finally…
(Words stacked on top of each other, forming a circular cage, that three main knights are in, holding letters as if they were bars.)

(Wordless page of Goog being held/thrown in air by celebrating, happy peasants, knights shuffling away, embarrassed/mortified.)

The knights were so embarrassed it gave the dragons time to fly into the sky, where they still live today.
(Dragons taking to the sky, while Goog coughs out the words, GoOD-Bye)

If you look real hard, you can still see their shapes in clouds sometimes.

Googs words were turned into a memorial playground, so that the next generation would never forget…
(Some of the words from HONeStLy, tAKE A LOoK aT YouRseLVEs. YoU NEEd TO GrOW Up… now have swings and slides and kids using them like monkey bars, or running/climbing across the top, sandpit underneath.)

And: rEAD a BOoK oR SomETHInG. FIghTiNg iS NuTS.
(BBQ area)

As for Goog, some say he lived in a cave after that, where he learned to… whisper…! And, with a LOT of practice, he got his words so small, he managed to write many stories…
(Goog whispering, small letters tumbling out, into pages of book)

Including THIS book.
(Goog, holding book with the same cover as this, tilting head to be smiling slyly/winking at reader.)

The End.

14 thoughts on “Day 1: The Dragon Who Breathed Letters

  1. Hello Matt,
    I just finished reading the first story to my kids today. My younger one who’s 6 loved it and had lots of questions about Goog.
    I am looking forward to reading a story each day to them 🙂
    This is a creative, and very refreshing story. Haven’t come across something this imaginative in many years!
    My best wishes to Cielo and you!


    1. Divya, thank you so much! Not all the stories are great for reading out loud, and some are for older readers, but I am sure there will be plenty in there for your kids to enjoy! All the very best! Matt


  2. I love this. Do you illustrate these or just include directions for illustrators? I hope a publisher has reached out to you.


    1. Lisa, hi. No, though I used to draw, I just don’t get time anymore. And, anyway, I put the art direction there in case any kid wanted to draw their own book, or parent for kid, or even teacher in class. How cool would that be!?


  3. I love this story. This is a great exercise for imagination. It is very well-written and moving. Thank you for it. I am considering joining you in this challenge.


Leave a Reply to Matt Zurbo Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.