September 9, 2021

What was the Secret of the Dr. Seuss Books?


What made the Dr. Seuss books so wonderfully delightful?

Would you answer the writers brand of humor in his books? For it was definitely unique.

The German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer is famous for several things, including being the first person to articulate an idea called “incongruity theory,” which postulates that people find things funny because they run counter to our expectations. The words in the Dr. Seuss books such as Zizzer-zazzer-zuzz took us by surprise and made us laugh. Who would have preconceived the word Zizzer-zazzer-zuzz?

How about his playful use of words? They were spontaneous and lived in the moment which is what children do. He caught the child in the words.

How about his outlandish characters? They were out of the ordinary and unexpected. Some you might even say were even bizarre.

It has been said that the nonsense rhymes and repetition combine to create sentences that just roll off the tongue in a satisfying rhythm which babies and young children love. Children learn words and laugh and come to enjoy reading.

Dr. Theodor Seuss Geisel captured the imagination of children of all ages. And isn’t that what a writer wants? He brought a unique brand of fun and laughter, and not just for young children, but for all to enjoy with fun and whacky words and characters. We totally got out of our boxes as each one of his books came into being.

Perhaps we can all learn something from Geisel that would translate our everyday writing into a writing that captures the hearts of our readers.


  1. We read many of these books to our son when he was small. Not only was Dr. Seuss a wonderful writer, but he illustrated his books as well!

    I read recently that "Green Eggs and Ham" uses only 50 words. This was the result of a bet Dr. Seuss made with his publisher.

  2. He had a great imagination and a gift to be able to write such great humor that touched a child. . . young or old.
    Thanks for sharing Kay