Sunday, March 6, 2016
For practice, try rewriting the beginning of some popular picture books and see if you like your work better. Do the same with the middle and again with the ending. This is good exercise to develop you skills. Learning to write beginnings, middles, and endings is not an innate quality we possess. This skill has to be learned. In picture books it is vital to look at both what is being said in the narrative and dialog and also what is NOT stated. Figure out what was omitted to allow the illustrator to show it in the artwork.
Some authorities (whoever they are) state that writing is 10% science and 90% art. The science is the learned part that includes the rules of writing. The art is everything else, such as remembering what you enjoyed, disliked, wanted, needed, and thought as a child. It’s the writer’s natural talent, the ability to choose words and string them together to create an individual, unique voice. The art also comes from days-of-our–youth daydreams. Yes, daydreaming is work for an author.
The rules of writing can be learned from a number of methods. Reading a variety of books is one way to master the art of storytelling on paper. Another is to read how-to books on writing. There are countless excellent resources for writers: books, Internet sites, newsletters focused on the craft of writing for children, workshops, conferences, and local writing and critique groups.
Call for Submissions for Young and Adult Writers:
Skipping Stones: An international publication for readers 8-16 that celebrates ecological and cultural diversity and facilitates a meaningful exchange of ideas and experiences by publishing essays, stories, letters to the editor, riddles and proverbs, etc.
Submission guidelines at http://www.skippingstones.org/submissions