Since October is National Children’s Month, this week we’ll be focusing on reading and writing for kids.
Writing for children is a totally different ballgame than any other kind of writing. Even the most brilliant authors will balk when asked to write a children’s book because not everyone has the “gift” of conversing with young readers.
In case you’re planning to go in that direction of writing but have no idea how to start or what to do, here are some tips you can follow while you’re in that preparation stage.
Spend time with children (specifically, the age group you want to write for)
In order to speak to them, you have to get to know the language they’re speaking (which can sometimes be an alien language to adults). If you don’t have kids or nephews/nieces of your own, volunteer at a day care center or school or your church’s Sunday school
Jot down your own childhood memories
*photo from http://arsahana.blogspot.com
Chances are, you won’t remember a lot from your childhood (unless it is very well-documented with pictures and videos). But there are certain memories that will stand out for you. Write them down or draw/sketch them. This will definitely inspire you to write that book you’ve been dreaming of.
Read both award-winning and most popular children’s books
It is always good to learn from those who have gone before us (and who have been hugely successful). You can also analyze which topics or subject matters have not been tackled yet, and maybe that can be your “niche”.
Look at picture books and artworks for children
FISH CITY by Moskowitz
One of the greatest things about children’s books is the beautiful artwork that accompanies the words. Look at what’s out there and what are the different materials you can play around with. This can help shape your vision for your book.
Try out some story ideas on children
Since you’re spending time with kids anyways, why don’t you try out some of the ideas you’re thinking of, and see how they react to it. It doesn’t have to be a well thought out story already, but just some ideas or activities that you’re toying with.
Next week, we’ll give you tips on the writing / publishing process once you’ve already created a draft of your book