It’s “Poopendous!”

March 28, 2012 Denise Romano
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Children’s book author, Artie Bennett, is releasing his second book, “Poopendous!” with a special Brooklyn launch at the BookMark Shoppe on March 30.

Bennett, who is a copyeditor by day, said that his previous penning, the award-winning “The Butt Book” was his “first mature work.”

“Something was gnawing at me to try my own hand at writing,” Bennett recalled. “I wanted to step out from behind the curtain.”

Bennett said he was inspired by Dr. Seuss. His first book was modeled after the “Bright and Early Book” series by Seuss, which has a book for each body part.

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“I really loved those books,” he said. “One day, I had a brainstorm. What’s missing from this series? A butt book!”

Bennett wrote the book with the idea of having it a part of the Seuss series, but his publishers passed. Eventually, another company picked it up and the rest is history.

When he decided to write another book, Bennett thought, “What about a book about poop? It’s a child-friendly subject and I could write a book that was educational and fun to read.”

The title came to him in an instant and he checked on Amazon to make sure that it wasn’t already taken. Bennett had already figured out the last page of the story, “Your butt will thank you in the end!” and wrote the book backwards.

“The best way to keep a young listener’s attention is a story,” Bennett explained. “It’s filled with fascinating, mature information, told in a humorous fashion.”

“Poopendous!” which will be released on March 27, is often referred to as a “gateway book,” meaning it’s a good first book for young readers. “It shows them how much fun a book can be and pay dividends throughout a child’s life,” Bennett said. “They develop a passion for reading.”

Bennett said that, with a world filled with electronics and television, books are often forgotten. “If a child can see that a quiet tool like a book can be important, it can have a transformative effect and provide as much fun and merriment [as television],” he said.

Bennett recalled the first time he read the book out loud to a young acquaintance, who was often a “gloomy Gus.” “He was jumping up and down, yelling, ‘Read it again!’” he said. “I thought, maybe I am onto something with this book and approach.”

“Poopendous!” tells how poop is used in different cultures, gives different vocabulary for it and talks about its natural aspects.

“Dung beetles roll it into balls, to gobble it up when hunger calls,” reads one line.

“If your crops are small and fewer, Hey Farmer, have you tried manure?” is another.

“It demystifies poop by explaining how it’s being used,” Bennett said.

The whole experience has made Bennett have a deeper respect for the authors whose work he copyedits each day. “I have been able to understand how dedicated they need to be in helping promote their book,” he said. “It has given me another hat to wear.”

Bennett enjoys getting “fanny mail” from his readers. “It’s both a surprise and a satisfying thing to know your book is reaching people,” he said. “It has been so gratifying to bring the gift of laughter to children.”

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