Nancy's Books

Sunday, September 1, 2013


Beginning with this blog, I will post markets for both young writers and adult writers each week through May, 2014.
This article is the second in the series, WRITING PICTURE BOOKS—SIMPLY DIFFICULT.
1.                      Word choice. Use action verbs to energize your writing with dramatic impact: “sprint” or “mosey” reveals more than “ran” or “walk.” Read your manuscript aloud. Does the text have a rhythm? Do you hear the music of the words? Use poetic devices, such as similes and metaphors, which are pleasing to the ear. I used the same words—fizzle and sizzle—to produce both nouns and verbs for a lyrical sound in BARRELING OVER NIAGARA FALLS:  When the sizzle fizzled out of teaching music, and the fizzle sizzled out of teaching dance 

2.                          Think visually. Writers are accustomed to creating worlds with words, but in picture books, we have to consider movement for each scene. Provide a change in the movement in each scene to allow the illustrator opportunities to carry the story beyond the text. Rely on action to tell the story. 

This article will be continued in next week’s blog. 

Call for submissions for young writers:

CREATIVE KIDS MAGAZINE is looking for the very best material by students (ages 8–16). Material may include cartoons, songs, stories between 500 and 1200 words, puzzles, photographs, artwork, games, editorials, poetry, and plays, as well as any other creative work that can fit in the pages of the magazine.
Details at

Call for submissions for adult writers:

The Chattahoochee Review. Send via online form. Online Form. Theme: The Animal. Be sure to mention the theme in your cover letter.  

Check out more contests on my blog:


  1. Great advice and not nearly as easy to do as most people think!. Love the sizzling fizzling.

  2. The fun of writing is to play with words and surprise the reader.

    Picture books are extremely difficult to write because we have to think visually and let the illustrations tell the story without having access to the illustrations at the time we're writing. Not an easy task.