Top Ten Tips For Writing Children’s Fiction
Here are 10 tips for writing children’s fiction that will have you writing books that children want to read in no time at all. Follow these tips to the letter and make sure you complete each tip. This way, you will have a road map as to how to plan and write books for children.
- Research – Nothing hinders a writer than not researching what books kids are reading. If you don’t know what’s going on in the marketplace you will never get your books into the right hands. Reverse engineer what the top selling books do right and then give your readers something better.
- Never Stop Writing – You have a unique voice as a children’s writer and you need to keep writing to practice your craft. A writer writes and keeps on writing. To find your own voice you must continually write and develop your ideas until you have your story written.
- Know Your Audience – Do you know who you are writing for? When it comes to writing children’s fiction you have the middle grades and the young adult genres and they areas different as night and day. This means you need to know the children you are writing for, what they like to read, their reading levels and the types of books that are age-appropriate for that genre.
- Know The Difference Between Good Writing and Writing Good Plots – Anyone can write but can they write well? Can they come up with plots that are structured in a way that inspire children to read? Great stories are at the center of a good book. Just writing well won’t cut it. You have to come up with plots that keep your readers reading.
- Be Consistent With Your Characters – before actually writing the story, write a short biography on each character until you know that character intimately. Nothing hurts a story more than a character that does something inconsistent with their personality. It makes the characters unbelievable and your story not worth reading.
- Learn the Art Of Storyboarding – Storyboarding is very important in getting your story right. By setting up a storyboard, you can play with the story until you have all the elements where you want them. This means writing a great beginning, a solid middle and a memorable ending.
- Who Is Your Story’s Voice? – Do you know where your story’s voice is coming from? Are you writing in the first or third person and does it fit the story? Be consistent with the narrative and let the action tell the story.
- Have A Strong Opening – Your job as a writer is to grab the reader with a dramatic event. In order to get kids reading you have to shock them with a big opening sequence. George Lucas was a master at that with his opening sequences of the Star Wars movies. Get the reader excited with a great opening and they will read till the end.
- Show Don’t Tell – This is what your writing should do. Let the characters show what they think and feel and their actions should move the story along without being too wordy. Short sentences should explain just enough for the child to get a good picture of the action in their mind.. That’s what you are striving for.
- Don’t Edit Until First Draft is Done – Focus on your story not your spelling or grammar mistakes. That comes later. Work on the plot and how your characters interact. Tell your story and then you can revise it. Let your ideas free-flow until you have a workable first draft. You can change scenes, characters and plot devices for the editing stage.
A writer that can make a child emotionally invested in his story is what all writers strive for. Follow these ten tips for writing children’s fiction and you will be on your way to writing great children’s fiction stories.
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