Thursday, February 18, 2016

Picture Book Advice, compiled by Elizabeth Bluemle on PW's Shelf Talker

I thought this article, "Favorite Picture Book Revision Tips" was great.

It's packed with good advice for authors and illustrators, some good to hear again, some put in a new way that gave me fresh insight, and some that made me laugh out loud. Three favorites:

DON’T FORGET to play ALL the parts/roles in the story. That way, all of your characters will feel three-dimensional and real. —Susan Fletcher, Dadblamed Union Army Cow 

SEED THE RESOLUTION in the beginning of the book. It makes the ending so much more satisfying. Example: In my picture book, Maggie and the Monster, Maggie tells her mother early on in the story that besides the little noisy monster who comes into her room every night, there’s also a monster who lives upstairs in the closet behind the brooms. Later, when the little monster admits to Maggie that she’s looking for her mother, Maggie knows just where to find that mother. Upstairs in the closet behind the brooms. The resolution was “seeded” early on… — Elizabeth Winthrop, Dumpy LaRue; Lucy and Henry Are Friends 


BONUS TIP: Recently, I was on a walk with my friends Chris Tebbetts (Public School Superhero; Middle School 7: Just My Rotten Luck) and Liza Woodruff (Emerson Barks; and illustrator of If It’s Snowy and You Know It, Clap Your Paws!), and they shared a great tip they’d picked up at a recent writing retreat. When a discussion there turned to writing discipline, one writer told the group that she pays herself $15/hour to write, and those funds go into a separate bank account that she then uses for retreats and trips throughout the year. Now, that’s a kind of motivation I’d never thought of! 

For those of us writing and/or illustrating picture books, it's well worth checking out.

Illustrate and Write On,

1 comment:

jen storer said...

Hello Lee, from Melbourne, Australia! After being a member for yonks, I have just discovered the SCBWI blog. Der! I'm a successful author of kids book (published mostly with HCP and Penguin) and I recently started teaching creative writing (specifically, Writing Books for Children). I wanted to let you know that I have a blog for those who can't attend my classes, ie most people. Ha! I'm sure some of your readers would enjoy the blog and find it helpful. I share loads of tips as well as reflections on what goes on in class. You know, who bought which biscuits, who made banana bread etc.. ;-)
Here's the link:
I do hope you pop over!
Loads of best wishes
Jen Storer