Sunday, August 18th, 2019

Would You Like a Query Critique from Me?

I blogged last week about jump-starting your writing resolutions with Julie Hedlund’s wonderful 12X12 in 2013 program for picture book authors, but here’s some further news that includes yours truly… Next week, from January 23-25th, I’ll be offering FREE query critiques for members of the 12X12 in 2013 program. If you’re a children’s book author and you haven’t already […]

The Series Series, Part 6: Tracking Plot Details

When it comes to maintaining continuity of plot details in a series, it can be helpful to create a scene chart or a storyboard for each story as well as for the overall series itself. Some novelists use index cards or Post-it notes to build a storyboard, because they allow for manipulation of the sequence […]

The Series Series, Part 5: Tracking Settings

In the last post, we looked at building, developing and maintaining the continuity of characters within a series. Now let’s look at the same thing with respect to setting. The key to creating an evocative setting – whether real or fantasy – is to incorporate the senses. Many writers describe only what can be seen […]

The Series Series, Part 4: Continuity

Despite scrupulous editing, some of the most successful series of all time feature notable inconsistencies.  For example, in Eragon, book one of Christopher Paolini’s Inheritance Cycle, the character of Murtagh has brown hair – but in Eldest and Brisingr, he has black hair.  J.K. Rowling is the first to admit to the many discrepancies in […]

Mapping Your Plot

In my “Just Write for Kids” course, we spend quite a bit of time exploring different ways to develop plot. We look at basic three-act storytelling structure: Act 1 – Set-up/Intro to character(s) and problem Act 2 – Problem escalates to crisis or turning point Act 3 – Resolution/Character solves problem and/or learns something, grows […]

Editing Yourself – Find and Replace

We’ve been talking about editing this month on the Children’s Book Hub. Even though I myself am a freelance children’s book editor as well as an author, I rely heavily on my collaborations with editors – at our publishing house, as well as on a freelance basis. My mother and I are fortunate to work […]

SCBWI Highlights

I had the pleasure of spending this past Saturday at the SCBWI Winter Conference in NYC.  Wow!  For those of you remotely interested in writing for children, the SCBWI conferences are a must.  The information, networking opportunities and resources are invaluable. The venerable Lois Lowry gave a superb keynote on finding ideas (during which I […]