This is an illustration from the Story Sketch "Cat vs. Pug."

You know your kid is a brilliant storyteller, and the Pima County Public Library does, too. 

But does the community? 

As part of the library's Summer Learning program, library staff are transforming short stories written by children and teens into a series of sketches that are narrated and then posted on YouTube

And they are so creative. 

Kids ages 5 to 18 can submit a story that is 500 words or less for the library's Story Sketches project. Young artists are also welcome to illustrate their own stories, which library staff will then narrate. 

"The theme for Summer Learning this year is 'Imagine Your Story,' and we know that kids have all sorts of stories that they tell..." says Kendra Davey, the literacy initiatives program manger for the library. "We want them to be able to write their story, whatever it is." 

She adds that stories can be about anything, fiction or nonfiction.

If your kid is super into lizards, for example, she says you might encourage a story sharing lizard facts. Kids can also tell family stories or personal experiences. Or they can make up something completely fictional. 

For example, a recently posted Story Sketch "Cat vs. Pug" pits a cat and pug against each other, with the loser receiving a trophy made of raisins and a house made of cactus. 

Each week, library staff will select three stories to turn into Story Sketches through a drawing. 

"It's a random drawing, because it's not a contest," Davey says. "We're not judging it. I think we would do every story if we had the staff." 

To submit a story, email the story, any illustrations and a media release form to storysketches@pima.gov or turn it in at any library branch. 

For additional guidelines for submitted stories, visit the Pima County Public Library's website. 


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