How to Write a Children’s Picture Book

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You CAN be a Children’s Book Author I’m Darcy Pattison, and I’m a children’s book author. Wouldn’t you love to say that about yourself? Wouldn’t you love to be the one signing books for kids and families? Twenty years ago, I decided to write a children’s picture book. I had four kids and we read […]

How To Write A Picture Book: Resources

12 Updated Resources for 2011 State of the industry. First, a basic question: Are picture books dead? Not according to Karen Springen and PW. Don’t Write the Obit For Picture Books Yet, By Karen Springen, Dec 12, 2010 Writing Encouragement. Natl Pic Book Writing Week May 1-7, 2011 National Picture Book Writing Week is a […]

Simple Narrative Arcs, 2

splendid

Narrative Arc in Less Than 100 Words: Example 2 Very simple picture books still have a narrative arc, even though the word count is extremely small. Yesterday, we looked at an example of a great simple narrative in My Friend, Rabbit. Today, here’s a look at a narrative arc in 80 words (with the help […]

Simple Narrative Arcs, 1

rabbit

Narrative Arc in Less Than 100 Words: Example 1 Very simple picture books still have a narrative arc, even though the word count is extremely small. Here’s a look at a narrative arc in 80 words (with the help of some illustrations), as it appears in My Friend, Rabbit, by Eric Rohmann, winner of the […]

Revising for Audience

cupcake

I’m writing a picture book that I know should work. But it’s not. Consider the Picture Book Audience Part of the problem with this story is that it’s set in a commercial kitchen and I have a kid who wants to cook. Critiquers tell me that the writing is great, the kid is great, but […]

Shrunken Picture Book

Shrunken Picture Books, Photo by Rita

How I Shrunk my Picture Book Manuscript – and Why I’ll Do It Again! by Lee Wind At a schmooze of the SCBWI Tri-Regions of Southern California, discussion ranged far and wide, pulling info and tips from many sources. Lee Wind showed a shrunken manuscript of a picture book, complete with glitter, colors and stickers. […]

muttering

Reading aloud

Re-Reading: The Basic Revision Strategy I’m always amazed at how much the revision process depends on re-reading what you wrote. It’s an obvious statement, of course. Yet, when I ask people about their revision process, re-reading is seldom mentioned. It’s one of those assumed things. Suggestions for Re-reading to Re-envision Re-read an entire section, not […]

editing

Simple Steps to Revision

Simplify Your Picture Book Story I’m currently revising a picture book and my major goal is to simplify the story. Why simplify the story? At 1200 words, the picture book text is way too long. I needed to cut it about in half. Why? Sue Edwards has just been reading 50 picture books in a […]

Picture Book 4

historicalfiction

7 Children’s Picture Book Manuscripts in 7 Days I’m taking the 7 in 7 picture book challenge. Report on 7 in 7 for the first week of May, 2009 May 7 May 6. Historical Fiction. OK, here comes the rationalization for why I don’t have a good draft done. A couple years ago, a friend […]

Picture book 1

7 Children’s Picture Book Manuscripts in 7 Days I’m taking the 7 in 7 picture book challenge. Report on 7 in 7 for the first week of May, 2009 May 1: Violet Ivy’s Button Eyes. 1128 words. May 2: ABC book. OK, so it’s one I had half-way started before and abandoned because I had […]

7 in 7

photo by Bisayan Lady

Have you decided to join the National Picture Book Writing Week? It started today and you need to write a picture book (with a beginning, middle and end) each day. Of course, if you write seven, you’ll need to revise seven! So, come back the next week and read through my series, 30 Days to […]

Audience

Do you pay attention to your audience when you write, or do you write for yourself, an audience of one? PW’s Shelf Talker Josie Leavitt has an interesting posting on when toddlers pick out their own books. Even as toddlers, boys and girls choose books differently. Both are passionate about the books they love and […]

Revision Attitude

Yesterday, I started brainstorming on revisions for a picture book. I got some editorial feedback in February when I saw the editor in NYC. But it’s been hard to approach this revision because when we talked, I disagreed with much of what the editor said. Cooling Off Period Helps Me See Editor’s Wisdom So, I […]