Nancy's Books

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Reading Books by a Variety of Authors

Reading books in the genre in which you write offers a view into the different styles, voices, and approaches to subjects that you cannot find any other way. Immersion into a wide variety of books broadens a writer’s skills. As you read ask yourself why the author chose the style and approach? Question the word choice. Did the story make you feel an emotional attachment to the characters? Analyze the story by rereading some of the paragraphs to figure out how the author drew you into the story and held your interest throughout. Did some parts entertain and some seem less than interesting. Was there a part of the story you did not like? Would you change any of the text if you had written the story? If your interest is picture books, were the stories fast paced? Most picture books are.

By reading a variety of authors, we develop a sense of how to craft a story, develop a character who is presented with a problem, and against all odds, takes the challenge and finds a suitable solution. This is no easy task with an economy of words and 14 double-page spreads. As you learn from reading the works of others, you can apply and adapt the knowledge to your own piece, such as the different ways to express narrative and dialog. Reading books by a variety of authors is inspiring and stretches a writer’s creativity, which will be evident in the next story written.
Call for Submissions for Young Writers:
Young Poets Anthology. Poems must be submitted by a parent/legal guardian, or a teacher. Teachers may select at most two students per year and submit on their behalf, with the assurance to us that you will be able to provide a parent’s signed permission prior to publication. Please remember that we will be choosing our favorite 52 poems from thousands submitted—try not to get anyone’s hopes up prematurely.

The author of the poem must have been age 15 or younger when the poem was written, and 18 or younger when submitted. The poets may use their whole name, first name, or a pseudonym at their parents’ discretion. We will not publish any contact information.

Upon acceptance, a parent or legal guardian must sign a release allowing us to publish the poem.

Try to send several poems as opposed to a single piece, but no more than four in a submission—and again, make only one submission per child of up to four poems in ONE document. Include the parent's contact info in the file.

For this category only, feel free to make additional submissions any time in the future, if the child writes new work. We only publish one anthology per year, and a year is along time to wait. 

Call for Submissions for Adult Writers:
Chicken Soup Stories about Cats.
We are working on and collecting stories and poems for another wonderful book about our cats. We love stories about our cats and the amazing and magical things they do. We rejoice in their simple absurdities, funny habits, and crazy antics. Our cats make us smile and laugh every day, but sometimes they really outdo themselves. Whether they came up with the idea themselves, or you put them in a situation that caused them to do something unusual, we want to hear about it! We know you'll have many great stories for us about your cats. Stories can be serious or humorous... or both. Tell us what your cat did. The deadline for story and poem submissions is October 31, 2016.
Submission guidelines at


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