Give me books, fruit, french wine and fine weather and a little music out of doors. --John Keats

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

"Somewhere in the distance, a dog barked . . . "

Some time in the past month or two I read a blog post about novelists being unable to resist including a line about a dog barking in the distance. I searched high and low for that post but at first all I could find was this article, which must have been where the idea originated.

Right now my son is reading one of the "Stink" books. He stopped reading for a minute and caught my attention. "Hey, mommy, listen to this. It says, 'All ears were listening. Not even a dog barked.' Isn't that funny? 'Cuz you know how whenever it gets real quiet in a book they always say a dog barked in the distance." Too funny that a ten-year-old has already picked up on that same thing . . . he just didn't understand why I laughed so hard when he told me.

Thanks to Lisa at bibliophiliac, I can now share with you that I originally read this when Pete Karnas wrote about it on What You Read. A literary amnesiac is always thankful to be surrounded by people with good memories.

Woof!

13 comments:

bibliophiliac said...

That was Pete Karnas over at What We Read--an excellent blog. So funny, because I thought of that post when a dog barked in the distance in Driftless, my current read!

Coffee and a Book Chick said...

Ha! Cute - and it's spot on that there's always that dog barking in the background!

Kathy said...

Bingo, Lisa! That's it! I'm so glad to have people like you around to remember things for me. I will update the post with a link to Pete's.

Natalie, isn't it wonderful that now we'll forever be cursed by having that line stand out and call attention to itself every time we read it? ;)

Trisha said...

I'm pretty impressed that your son said that! those dogs sure do bark rather constantly in literature. I guess it's better than cats crying though.

Elle said...

Hahaha, that is SO true, I've seen that phrase turn up in so many books. I guess it's kind of an overused filler sentence! And your son's so cute that he noticed that! :)

Elle said...

p.s. - now I'm going to giggle every time I read that sentence anywhere, and yes, I'm going to keep a count. :P

Kathy said...

I'm kind of impressed by my son also! In fact, the cynical side of me has tried to determine whether he had this pointed out to him by someone else, or if he really discovered this all on his own. If it had been my middle child, who is more of a bookworm, I probably wouldn't have found myself skeptical.

Trisha, your comment made me curious--have you read a book where cats cry in the distance, or was that just an example of how it could be worse?

Elle--speaking of giggling over this--it's probably going to strike me as a joke every time I see this from now on, and I will wonder if the author did it on purpose (trying to be funny by using a hackneyed phrase).

She said...

I've never thought about that, but it's so true! I got your package yesterday-- thank you so much! I can't wait to read it.

Coffee and a Book Chick said...

Stop by my site, you've got an award waiting for you!!

Vicki said...

I love books about animals. In fact I just joined the "What An Animal lll Reading Challenge" hosted by Socrates Book Review Blog.

I have an award for you HERE

Kathy said...

Erika, I'm glad the pkg arrived, hope you enjoy it! It will be quite a change from that zombie book. ;)

Natalie and Vicki, thanks so much for the awards!

petekarnas said...

That's wonderful your son reads enough to recognize that from book to book. Thanks for linking to my post!

Kathy said...

He hated to read until I discovered the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books for him. That series worked a magical revolution for which I will be ever grateful.