With the recent naming & shaming posts receiving such a wonderful response I feel it is only fair to add a more positive area to the blog whereby I will review children’s picture books. So keep an eye out, over the next few months you’ll see a lot of amazing and talented authors and illustrators crop up. You never know, I may be reviewing your work!
I’m in the process of finding an agent so everyday, every submission is a continuous process which I’m thoroughly enjoying.
To look for a right agent can be tricky. Research and asking lots of questions to make sure you understand what you’re signing up for can be daunting to say the least. Over on writers digest there’s an article with a lot of things to consider and there are some additional links too. I definitely recommend having a read.
You’ve completed manuscript, it’s ready to go but what next? How do you get it published? Where do I go and who do I speak to?
10 steps shows you how to maintain professionalism to ensure you are prepared enough to turn those dreams into reality.
The Business of Writing for Children, by Aaron Shepard, Shepard Publications, 2000
Picture Writing: A New Approach to Writing for Kids and Teens, by Anastasia Suen, Writers Digest Books, 2003
Writing With Pictures: How to Write and Illustrate Children’s Books, by Uri Shulevitz, Watson-Guptil, 1997
It’s a Bunny-Eat-Bunnny World: A Writer’s Guide to Surviving and Thriving in Today’s Competitive Children’s Book Market, by Olga Litowinsky, Walker Books, 2001
The Writer’s Guide to Crafting Stories for Children, by Nancy Lamb, Writer’s Digest Books, 2001
The Children’s Writer’s and Illustrator’s Marketplace, published yearly by Writer’s Digest Books
Writing Fiction for Children: Stories Only You Can Tell, by Judy K. Morris, University of Illinois Press, 2001
Children’s Picture Books: The Art of Visual Storytelling, by Martin Salisbury and Morag Styles, Laurence King Publishers, 2012
Steering the Craft: Exercises and Discussions on Writing for the Lone Navigator or the Mutinous Crew, by Ursala K. Le Guin, Eighth Mountain Press, 1998
Writing Down the Bones, by Natalie Goldberg, Shambhala Library, 2010
With writing stories aimed at publication, I have spent countless hours on the internet looking at a variety of links and recommendations and then I finally came across a website purely dedicated to childrens picture books and there are a lot of helpful insights, tips, links to writing manuscripts, covering letters and extra little gems such as exercises and agent advice.
If you’re in the same position as myself give it a try! Here.
In an attempt to find a name for an area of land in project three, I stumbled across a website by Rebecca J Gomez. She informs you of some crimes committed when writing rhyming stories. Although I agree with her advice, I would add don’t be afraid to try new styles of rhyming – with how quickly slang and language change there’s nothing wrong with pushing the boundaries.
When it comes to writing children’s books, one of the most significant issues you may come across are your characters. Whether you’re new to writing or you’re a professional – if you don’t have relatable characters then you need to rewrite. I’ve found this article to be helpful.
I’ve recently told you about some tips for writing a rhyming book for children but what about if you only want a basic story? What sort of characters do you pick? Do you put any particular lesson learning messages in it? How do you choose the type of words, so that a child will understand?
Author Alan Durant gives some pointers to new starters. You can find his advice here.
I have found an article explaining why it’s essential that children, of nearing high school age, would benefit from continuing to read picture books. I agree wholeheartedly with it, and the idea that I’d ever had to get rid of picture books for my children before they get to high school is not something I want to think about – those books are mine and my children’s worlds.
You can read it here.
In honour of World Book Day, here are the books I have read to my children today! I love all of them but if I had to pick, “Aliens Love Underpants” wins every time. It’s inspired me to write my 3rd project, believe it or not.
Bright Stanley by Matt Buckingham
The Jungle Run by Tony Mitton and Guy Parker-Rees
The Tickle Book by Ian Whybrow and Axel Scheffler
Colour Me Happy by Shen Roddie and Ben Cort
Room On The Broom by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler
I Wish I Were A Pirate by Smriti Prasadam-Halls And Sarah Ward
Aliens Love Underpants by Claire Freedman and Ben Cort
I am taking all these reading opportunities to do my research on what works in children’s books, looking for specific themes and length etc. Unfortunately there are some books that I don’t approve of and I’m amazed they even got published, see my Naming & Shaming part of my blog for further info.
I love reading books to my children, hence the major desire to write my own books for them!