5 Lessons I learned from Roald Dahl

© Dirty Foot Butterscotch

I’m just going to jump right in with my list… I mean, everyone has been celebrating Roald Dahl this month. After all, it is his birthday month. I adore Roald Dahl, and even though I’ve been busy with the upcoming book and interviews, I’d hate to have to wait another year to honor him. So, Happy Birthday Mr. Dahl! Thank you for inspiring so many, including a little piece of candy like myself! I always wondered if the Butterscotch and Buttergin, from Charlie & the Chocolate Factory, were somehow related to my family…

5 Lessons I learned from Roald Dahl

#5 To Dream Big and to Believe in the Impossible

Before I ever read C.S. Lewis or J.K. Rowling, I enjoyed growing up reading the wonderful words and exploring the worlds of Roald Dahl. I learned there were friendly giants hiding in plain site and mean ones who were too dumb to find me. I learned about telepathy and the power of a good heart and strong mind. I learned that through reading, anything was possible. I also learned that it’s okay, to leave your abusers, and some grown-ups truly are Twits, and Monsters and Madmen aren’t always who you think they are.

Photos from: BFG, Matilda, and Revolting Rhymes

#4 A Title of a Book or an Idea for a Story is as easy as turning a word, and that NONSENSE is the Universal Language of Childhood.

I enjoyed the preposterous names of characters and places. I enjoyed reading about places and gadgets and foods and creatures… all NONSENSE. And if you have noticed from some of my posts, I LOVE NONSENSE. Take Esiotrot, for example. Prime example of pure Dahlian Genius: A story about a little old man, in love with his neighbor, a little old lady, and how he tries to woo her/win her love in return. The story does involve a lot of senseless tortoise buying, but it is still a cute story… and all from turning a word.


#3 The Importance of a Great Illustrator

All hail the magical Illustrating talents of Quentin Blake. His unique style set Roald Dahl’s books apart from so many others that crowd the shelves of libraries and bookstores, around the globe. And I don’t know about you, but the characters always looked how they were described…



#2 That the Littlest People, the shy, quiet, forgotten nobodies… usually have the biggest hearts and the saddest beginnings, but in the end… they still manage to become someone’s hero.



#1 The Importance of Food in a Story

From reading his stories, I was always tickled by the different foods. It was in his books that I first learned that food was an important element to a story. When poor Bruce had to eat the whole chocolate cake, I felt his pain. When Violet ate the gum that tasted like a full meal, well… I love roast beef and blueberry pie! My mouth watered right along with the descriptions. And then the newt in the water glass, the tv dinners for supper… too many to recall off hand. But later, as I am pursuing my writing “career,” I have found that food truly is an important element.

When I saw there was a Recipe Book, I was ecstatic! I couldn’t wait to “try” Snozzcumbers(BFG), Mosquitoes’ Toes and Wampfish Roes Most Delicately Fried (James and the Giant Peach), Bird Pie (The Twits), or Eatable Marshmallow Pillows (Charlie & the Chocolate Factory).


Snozzcumbers (BFG)


Mosquitoes’ Toes and Wampfish Roes Most Delicately Fried (James & the Giant Peach


Bird Pie (The Twits)


Eatable Marshmallow Pillows (Charlie & the Chocolate Factory)

I have since found out that there is in fact, another Recipe Book, and SO MANY more books from the Creative Genius of Roald Dahl’s mind. How lucky this world has been to have had such a talented being living among us, showing us a side of this world we hadn’t yet seen.


In Loving Memory of Roald Dahl September 13, 1916- November 23, 1990




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