Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Learning From Cybraryman

Guest post by: Sasha, Mia, Sammy, and Parsa

Recently, we Skyped with the world famous Cybraryman from Florida! He taught us the process he uses to make cartoon books. There are many steps to consider when writing a story.

Several students took notes to help them learn.

Cybraryman was hired to write a cartoon book for a utility company. A utility company  is a company that works with electricity.  He was very funny and made us try to guess what a utility means!  He was hilarious and asked Mrs. Yollis to turn off the lights as a little clue!  Utility companies provide electricity, gas, and water!  

First, he had to think of a main character. 

Cybrary Man's first idea for a character was a super hero!  If you look  closely, you can see that the super hero is a very old man!  It just didn't seem to be the right character.  

       This is the hero that Cybraryman wanted because he is young, but this picture had some problems.  The boy was clenching his fists, and the little girl's hands looked like they had claws.  She was also looking up in the sky like she was waiting for something evil to happen.  They had to change that!

                            When you are writing a book you have to research!  Cybraryman researched energy, since that is what the book is about.   He always goes to the library, not Wikipedia.                                            

This is a close up of a classmate's notes.  Everybody wanted to learn how to make a cartoon book, so they brought their notes home and tried.  Cybraryman told us to make the story interesting and to try to make good ideas better!

When Cybraryman  started making cartoon books, he used a typewriter!  He said, "It was a real pain in the neck because if you made a mistake, you'd have to start all over again!"

This is an example of things you need to do before you do the final copy.  First you plan, then outline.  Then you ask your friend or somebody like your boss to give you feedback.

Cybraryman showed us a sloppy copy and a final copy to show us how much a book can change.  He asked us if we can indicate  any differences.  If you can see, the cat on the left has his fire suit unbuckled and on the right it is snapped together.  (The left is the sloppy copy.)

These are all the steps to write a cartoon book: idea, need, approach, outline, script, dummy, revisions, and  final copy.  A dummy is a real size fake person of the character, so you can see what the character will look like.  

This is what the final copy looks like!  The boys fists are not clenched, the girl is not looking at the sky, and her hands do not look like claws.  That was an improvement! 

Cybraryman told us that it can take a long to complete a book. This one took him about a year to make! That's perseverance!  

We are writing a class book right now and are going to apply Cybraryman's ideas to it a great book!

Thank you, Mia, for the wonderful photos!

Do you know how to write a cartoon book?
Have you ever written a book? Tell us about it!
What steps did you take?


  1. Dear Mrs. Yollis,

    I loved Skyping with Cybraryman! Yes, I have written a book before! In fact I have written several on your blog! I have written one about a heart walnut, pumpkin bread, one about blackberries, and another about a snowman family! I have copied the story about the walnut! Here it is!

    Once there was a walnut. It lived in a shell. The walnut was named Lonely. She was so lonely that she set off to find love! She looked everywhere, behind trees, up in the sky, and even upside down! She finally took a rest and went to sleep.

    When she woke up, Lonely heard a voice and the voice said, "Pardon me, but I couldn't help notice that you are so beautiful."

    Lonely looked up and saw another walnut! "Thank you!" Lonely said.

    " What's your name?" asked the other walnut.

    "Its Lonely," she said.

    "What's yours" said Lonely. "Mine is Nutty" said Nutty." Then they just looked at each other. Then just out of the blue someone picked Lonely up and Nutty up and ate them both! Though if the person who ate them, would of looked at Lonely then he would of seen a heart!

    I also have copied the one about pumpkin bread!

    Once there was some pumpkin bread mix. His name was Crumble! Crumble was a happy box of pumpkin bread mix, but he wanted someone to make him into pumpkin bread! One day his mother asked him what was wrong? Crumb said "I am bored of just being mix, I want to be real pumpkin bread! Then someone can enjoy me, and I will be happy too!" "But, honey you will be gone, and your dad and I won't be able to see you ever again! Unless we get eaten too, and I don't want to be eaten!" So Crum agreed to never ever get eaten. But the next day Mrs. Yollis' class baked all three of them, and ate them! And Crumb was very, very happy!

    Here is another story! It is about blackberries.

    Once there was a blackberry. His name was Yumberry, but people called Yum for short, and some people called him Berry. Now Berry was a tiny little blackberry, but he had a big heart. Berry loved to go on adventures! One day Berry wanted to go to the moon! He got in his black Porsche, and went to the moon shop, to get a suit, buy a rocket ship, and get a lot of dried food for the long journey. Finally, he was ready! He drove back home, and packed everything he needed. After he was done, he said to himself " I'm going to the moon!" The next day, he got into his rocket ship, and counted down. 3, 2, 1 take off! When he got to the moon he remembered that he once heard on a movie that the moon was made of cheese! Berry loved cheese so much, he bent down and took a big bite of the moon! He tasted it and as soon as he knew it he spit out a chunk of the moon in disgust! "The moon is not made of cheese!" he said despicably. So he decided to go home!

    The last story is finally here! It is about a snow man, snow woman, and a snow baby!

    Once there was a snowman, a snow woman, and a snow baby! The papa's name was Snowball, the snow woman's name was Snowy, and the baby's name was Snowflake. Now, the Snow family lived in Mrs. Yollis' attic most of the year. Then, when Christmas came around Mrs. Yollis took them out!

    They were so happy when she did because there was nothing to do in the attic but play with anything they could find, but most things got boring after an hour. So they always dreaded being in that horrible attic!

    When she took them out they could be free, and do anything they wanted. Until Mrs. Yollis puts them back into the attic till next December! Oh wait why did I say that... bye guys!

    You asked about the steps. Well, I didn't really take any steps when it comes to writing stories with me I just take it from the top of my mind! Then I preview it! Have you ever written a story?


    1. Sasha I loved reading your stories. You have a wonderful writing style. Keep on writing and hopefully one day I will be able to buy a book of yours to read to my grandchildren.

      Did Mrs. Yollis eat Lonely and Nutty?

    2. Dear Cybraryman,

      Thank you for commenting back to me! Yes, Mrs. Yollis did eat Lonely and Nutty in the story. I would love if I could ever publish a book, but I don't think that is what I would want to do with my whole life! Don't get me wrong, I love writing. Its just I love traveling around the world, and I also love singing and acting!


  2. Dear Mrs Yollis,

    It is fun writing a guest post, but it takes a lot of thinking! You have to be an amazing writer and you have to write comments a lot.

    There is a famous cartoonist who is in my family. His name was Friz Freleng and he was my great grandpa. He created Bugs Bunny, Tweety Bird, Pink Panther and Yosemite Sam to name a few characters. He even got his own star in Hollywood!

    I have written a cartoon book about a leprechaun and a pot of gold. The theme of my story was gold that kept falling into the pot from the sky, and the leprechaun got hit in the head with a piece of gold. At the end, the leprechaun goes to the hospital and got a bad concussion. He survived! I hope you liked my story.

    The first step of my cartoon book was to think of a main character. The second step was to create the story about what the main character would be doing. The third step was to draw it. Next, I had to make any changes that were wrong. Finally, I had to color my book.

    I hope I get to write a guest post again and make another cartoon book!


    1. Sammy

      Wow! Friz Freleng is a real legend! Very impressed to have such a talented great grandfather like him.

      I hope you find your pot of gold and please keep writing and drawing.

    2. Dear Sammy,

      I love your amazing comment! You taught me a lot of things about your grandpa. I knew that he was a famous cartoonist, but I didn't know that he created Yosemite Sam!

      I do not have any people who create cartoon characters, but my dad writes the scripts of adult shows with real actors. Right now, he is on a big hiatus, but he works on the show, Cougar Town. Do any of your relatives work on grown up shows with live actors?


    3. @ Cybrary Man,

      Thank you for your wonderful comment! Also, thanks for calling my Great Grandpa a legend! It is too bad that I didn't get to meet him but sadly he died before I was born. Yes, the leprechaun, well after he gets out of the hospital he gets his FULL pot of gold and puts it with his collection of pots of gold. I will keep up the good writing.


    4. @ Royce,

      Thanks for the magnificent comment! No, none of my relatives work on a TV show with famous actors. Does your dad ever get to meet the actors? Does your dad use any of you or Tabby's toys as props on the show? When is your dad off his break?

      Now that I've got my own blog, I am for sure adding you to my sidebar! What do you think I should call it? I have one great idea.

      Your friend,


  3. Dear Mrs. Yollis,

    I have writen many books! Here are some of my favorite ones: Safari Adventure , The Dragons of Life , and Cute Dogs . Here are some charaters that I made up Mr. Komodo, Froggy, and Mrs. Spooky.

    Many of my books have real characters, like friends. I go to Word on my computer and submit some pictures, and add captions, paragraphs, even sentences about that one picture.

    Your student,

  4. Dear Sasha,Mia,Sammy and Parsa,

    Wow what a super post! I loved how you covered every aspect on what is needed to be able to write a cartoon book. :) Who would have thought that it takes so much work and research.

    Now to tell you the truth I really believe that I would not be able to write a cartoon book due to the fact that I tend to lack imagination, at times.
    However I do believe I would be able to draw a cartoon character due to the fact that I just love to draw.

    Sasha your story that you wrote was amazing I really loved reading it and I really fell in love with your characters in both of your stories. Bravo!

    Sammy how wonderful that your great grandpa created all those wonderful cartoon characters. My favourite cartoon character was Tweedy bird. Do you have a favourite cartoon character?

    I also loved your cartoon story book which you wrote
    Your story was wonderful and I imagined in my mind the Leprechaun with his pot of gold.
    Great work Sammy and Bravo to you too!

    Thank you to you all for this wonderful post.

    From your pal down under,
    AA :)

    1. Dear AA,

      Thank you for that lovey comment! Thank you again for giving me such a wonderful compliment about my stories. I love writing the most because I get to learn and I can use my imagination (which I love doing my mom always says " You have such a big imagination Sasha)."


  5. To Mrs. Yollis and her wonderful class.

    I really enjoyed skyping into your class and I was very impressed with all of you. Your questions were excellent.

    “Be yourself. Above all, let who you are, what you are, what you believe, shine through every sentence you write, every piece you finish.”

  6. Dear Sasha, Mia, Sammy and Parsa,

    I think this is a wonderful post with great ideas for creating cartoon books. My full comment was too long to place here so here is a link if you want to see more...


    Teacher, NSW, Australia

  7. Dear Mrs. Yollis,

    I liked the amazing Cybraryman very much! He is a nice writer!

    Brenden and I were turning the pages of the fantastic book on the Elmo. The wonderful book that he wrote is educating, and I learned some magnificent writing steps from it. I bet 26 of the people in your classroom every morning love that fabulous book! :-)

    My favorite page in that book was the page with the exceptional super hero and the two kids. It did look like the boy was about to punch the superb super hero. I also liked the page with the old super heroes.

    After the real fun was over, Brenden and I had some more fun. We typed some notes about the fascinating Skype call. Did you see them?

    I wish we could Skype with Cybraryman again soon.


    P.S. I bolded the adjectives like you said to in your class. :-)

  8. @ Royce,

    Great comment!

    Cybraryman is very nice in my opinion too. You guys did a very good job of flipping the pages.

    I am one of the 26 people who likes Cybraryman's book, about how to write a cartoon book, in Mrs. Yollis' class.

    My favorite has to be the old superman because there is always a teenager who is the super hero, and it is unusual for a old man to be the super hero.

    Which one do you like better, the old man or the teenager?

    Parsa ( Yollis )

  9. Dear Sasha, Mia, Sammy and Parsa,

    Mrs Yollis let me know you weren't able to leave a comment on the blog I had used. On checking, I found you needed to be a member of Primary Blogger. What I have done is completely rework another of my blogs so it's easy to read and easy to leave a comment. On this new blog design, when you click on comment, you need only type your first name in the name box. You don't need an email address or website to leave a comment. Here is the new link...


    Teacher, NSW, Australia

  10. Dear Mrs. Yollis,

    I adore your post with Cybrary Man's winning smile. I loved the Skype call with Cybrary Man. My sister's and I are making a cartoon book with our class in it and buck. Can we have another Skype call with him?


    1. Hello ♥Ell♥e♥,

      I see you visited the post I made for Sasha, Mia, Sammy and Parsa. I liked your story but, without a link to your blog, I'll post something for your story here. I thought you might like a character for your story as you liked the dog drawing...


      Teacher, NSW, Australia

  11. Dear Mrs. Yollis,

    I might like to make a cartoon book too. I am a good writer. So I might be a writer when I go up. Do you think I can be a good writer?


  12. Dear Mrs Yollis and Class,
    What a great guest post! I really enjoyed reading about your Skype call, and you included enough detail for me to really get a picture of what you got up to. Well done! Sammy, your great grandpa created one of my all time favourite cartoons, the Pink Panther - I loved watching that when I was a kid!
    A Room with a View had a go at making a book for World Book Day, it was a picture book which we are sending to Mettupalayam in India, where we have links with their school. You can see it on our class blog!
    We all created a page each, but even so it involved an awful lot of hard work!
    Mrs M
    A Room with a View, UK


* * *
Getting feedback is important to our writers. Let us know what you liked or what you learned.

Steps to Comment:

1. Write your comment in the box below. Be sure that you have proofread it for spelling, grammar, punctuation, and capitalization. Students should have a parent check it!

2. Choose an identity. (If you have a gmail account, use it. If not, choose name/url. You can leave the url blank if you do not have a blog.)

3. Click "Publish your Comment". You may preview your comment before publishing if you'd like.

Important: All comments MUST be approved by me.
:-) Mrs. Yollis