Title: CALLIE BUTTONS AND THE AMAZING, JUMPING SPIDER
Genre: Humorous, Younger Middle Grade
Word Count: 10,200
Ten year old Callie is really, Really, REALLY AFRAID of spiders, having self-diagnosed herself with “Magnus Arachnophobius.” It’s the Amazing, Jumping Spider who is to blame as Callie believes every eight-legged creature is out to get her, to “build this giant web castle complete with a Jacuzzi tub and a walk-in refrigerator somewhere between my left eyebrow and the third freckle on my forehead!!”
The only thing that can possibly make this condition worse is being cast as the girl-turned-spider in the fourth grade play, Arachne.
Knowing she was bullied into this role, Callie puts her creativity to the test as she gives the creepy-crawly, hairy, googly-eyed beings another chance. And it’s when she sees the Amazing, Jumping Spider do something more than amazing that she’s inspired to stand up to the class bully.
It was always blustery and cold on the days when 10 year old Callie Buttons diagnosed herself with conditions. Three years ago during a hail storm she realized she had “Bendumus Elbowmuss” which was a condition where you bend your arms and swing them too much, thus making you walk very fast. It was a good disease to have if you were trying to get somewhere quickly, but not if you were trying to wait in line and your elbows jabbed the person next to you.
Callie researched it and discovered the only known cure was to hold a penny on your elbow. She did this every night before bed for two years and could now proudly say that she walked slower and didn’t jab.
There was a fluffy, blowing snowstorm when Callie diagnosed herself with “Double-Eyed Blinkitude” which meant she blinked her eyes too much. This was ok if you were trying to walk to school in a blustery storm, but not so good if the most popular boy in class yelled for you to stop winking at him with both eyes. Especially when you weren’t!
Callie discovered the cure was to have staring contests. So she enlisted her cat, Mr. Fuzzy Face, for help. Now it was two years later and she was almost cured.
On the day Callie diagnosed herself with “Magnus Arachnopbobius” there were gale force winds outside and the ocean, which she could see from her bedroom window, had white caps and huge splashing waves.