Kristy Roser Nuttall's story, "Squiggle Monster," was originally published in Short Edition’s October '19 Rendez-Vous. Kristy can be found storytelling and sharing poetry at the Tree Art Gallery in Orem, Utah or exploring the outdoors with her four sons, Isaac, Levi, Ty, and Xander.

Image of General Submissions - Rendez-Vous, October 2019 issue

Lydia hugged her new purple sketchbook, pens, pencils, watercolors, and paintbrushes. 

She jumped and twirled at the thought of making her very own ART. 

But when she opened the sketchbook, Squiggle Monster grabbed onto her pencil and went squealing, slipping, and sliding all over the page. 

Squiggle Monster took perfectly nice flowers and jiggled them into loopy piles of spaghetti. 

She took happy trees and wiggled them into a maze of mischief. 

Lydia stomped her foot.

"Stop it Squiggle Monster!" she cried. 

Squiggle Monster just blinked her squiggly eyes, and her wiggly tummy jiggled with giggles.

Lydia closed her eyes, wishing for Squiggle Monster to go away.

"Have a nice nap?" asked Squiggle Monster. 

Lydia's eyes shot open, and she snapped shut her sketchbook. But then Squiggle Monster wanted to doodle on the outside cover. 

"This is getting out of control!" Lydia said.

She knew it was time to pull out her secret weapon: RULERS. Maybe if she only drew perfectly straight lines, Squiggle Monster would stay away from her sketches. She started with a few boxy houses, and when Squiggle Monster began to swirl, she made nice straight lines and put Squiggle Monster in jail.

"Ha!'' she said as she stepped back. "Gotcha!" 

But when Lydia finished her picture, she didn't like how straight and boxy everything looked. Lydia decided to take a break. 

She took a few deep breaths. She stood on her head. She dashed out to the backyard to play. Lydia jumped like a frog from stone to stone and spun around in circles like a helicopter seed. Her legs wrapped around the swing set bar where she rocked back and forth in a cocoon of thought. 

And then, hanging there like a bat, Lydia noticed that the world has a lot of straight lines AND squiggly lines. 

She giggled, realizing that squiggles actually made her feel happy. She thought out loud to herself, "Maybe Squiggle Monster could be part of my style. Maybe Squiggle Monster could even be my Squiggle Partner!"

Lydia ran inside and took out her purple sketchbook. She erased the jail bars that held Squiggle Monster inside. "Look," she said, "we need to chat. I think if we work together, we can make awesome art with squiggly lines and straight lines. But you can't take over the pencil all the time." 

"I guess I could try that," said Squiggle Monster. 

Lydia gave Squiggle Monster a chance to be her partner, and Squiggle Monster let Lydia make a few straight lines. 

But the next day, when Lydia started adding paint to her drawings, someone else wanted to take over her paintbrush...Splotch Monster!

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