at the Paris Writers' Workshop, June 24–29, 2012
Do you have a children's book inside you? Many people do, especially if they remember what it's like to be a child. But how do you become successful in this field? Especially when it seems that everyone wants to write for children, including celebrities like Stephen Colbert and Julie Andrews. The upcoming Paris Writers' Workshop has invited one of the experts of Children's Literature to tell us more.
She offers a few creative tips to get you started on your path.
Get in touch with the child you were. Is there a particular age you strongly remember? Maybe this is the age you'll want to write for. How did you feel? What did you want? What frightened you? Maurice Sendak said that the WILD THINGS were inspired by his fear of his aunts and uncles pinching his cheeks and saying things like, "Look at this boy! Couldn't you just eat him up?"
Spend some time reading books similar to the book you'd like to write. Figure out how they work. Why do you care about the main character? What does that character want? What forces are working against the character achieving his or her goal?
Would you like a friend to recommend a book by saying, "There's a great lesson here for you!" No! So why do we think kids' books need to be teaching tools? Forget about the lessons and concentrate on writing a great page-turner of a story.
For more information, especially about our special limited-time reduced registration fee for SCBWI members and the PWW scholarship for half tuition awarded to one of the registered attendees, go to Paris Writers' Workshop or call the WICE office at 01 45 66 75 50. And, if you're ready to register for this workshop, go to the WICE website.
We hope to see you in June!
Post by Meredith Mullins and Kate McMullan. Book jackets courtesy of the publishers. We also thank our generous PWW sponsor, OIC Books.