Yes you can complete a children’s book

My fourth children’s picture book to the editor so thought I’d share with you a bit about my process.  kid reading a picture book

Writing a children’s picture book isn’t easy, but it doesn’t need to be daunting.

As with all stories, it begins with an idea.

ideas scribbled on paper

Here is how my new idea began. A friend’s grandson gave me the spark of an idea when she shared his reaction to A Reluctant Little Prince. Apparently, he was fascinated with the firefighter page.

flame in handA nugget of an idea began to form in the back of my mind. As the days and weeks passed, I played with several versions of what to do with my flickering flame.

Eventually, the story came together.

Now I must decide whether to attempt the illustrations myself or find an affordable illustrator.

Hope to have the new book released in the fall. Wish me luck.

If you have an idea swirling around in your mind, go for it. Here are some tips that might help.

Josh Funk’s Guide to Writing Picture Books

Check out the other posts I’ve written in the past about writing picture books.

Do you think writing a picture book is easy?

What you need to know about writing a children’s book?

I love reading your comments, so tell me… 

Have you written a children’s book? Leave a link in the comments section. I’d love to pass on the info.

Are you thinking about writing a children’s picture book?

Are you an illustrator? I hope you’ll reach out to me. I’d like to see your work. 

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Do you want to encourage passion in a reluctant reader?

Do you have a young reluctant reader at home?

The lazy hazy days of summer are here and many of you are trying to encourage your kids to read. Maybe their teacher gave them a reading list, but it’s a struggle to comply. Ready to try something new?

Reading is fundamental. We’ve heard that time and time again, but why? What makes it so important for our kids to find a passion for reading?

Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines fundamental “as serving as a basis supporting existence or determining essential structure or function.”

Reading is paramount to understanding everything from math, politics to recipes. If we can read well, we can understand the world around us.

Without a passion for reading, a person does not read.

However, I bet you know a kid who hates to read. Why? Because they haven’t found a book that captures their imagination.

All kids have big imaginations. All that is necessary is to find a book that taps into their creativity. So don’t give up and keep putting book after book in front of them until one clicks unlocking their potential.

My daughter is a third-grade teacher and she sees this reluctance in kids every day. Recently she told me about a book that has NEVER failed to hook a reluctant reader. Michael Vey: The Prisoner of Cell 25 by Richard Paul Evans. This is book one of seven. But once a kid starts book one, they want to read the second, third and then keep going until they finish the series. For a kid that hates to read, this book flips a switch changing what they think about reading. On a personal note, my five grandchildren agree with her.

Books by Richard Paul Evans appeals to all ages, from kid to adult, boys and girls alike. Click the image below to check out number one in the series.

Writing a review would be easy but over 1400 readers beat me to it. Check out what these readers had to say. Customer Reviews.  And don’t forget the Editorial Reviews!

Do you have a book recommendation for reluctant readers?

How have you encouraged reading in kids?

Add your book recommendations for young readers in the comments section.

 

 

Want to read more about reading for kids? Here are more websites.

Nurture a Love of Reading and Learning

Learning How to Read: 10 Ways to Help a Reluctant Reader

How can I encourage a reluctant reader?

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What you need to know about writing a children’s book?

Wow! Two years have passed.

Yes, it was two years ago this April, I finished the final touches on my first pre-school picture book.

Writing and publishing a picture book was a big learning curve.

Took me a year to finish this tiny 32-page book. Whew!

Maybe you have an idea for a children’s book, but like so many, you’ve put off starting because a picture book is a bit different from writing an adult story.

Let me speed you along toward your goal.

I’ve put together a list of 8 things I learned the hard way about writing a picture book.

  1. Buy a good PDF program. Yes, some people use MS Word but, trust me, it’s not worth the headaches. I finally settled on  Nitro Pro 10 Page Plus. It’s cheaper than Adobe and easy to use.
  2. Writers write and editors edit. Use an editor that understands children’s books. Yes, even small 32-page picture books need an editor. I found a great one by just asking around. LinkedIn and Facebook Groups are great resources. I found a wonderful editor, Margaret Welwood.
  3. Unless you can really draw, I can’t, find a good illustrator. Ask around. See #2.
  4. Decide on the size of your book. Go to the bookstore and library, look at other books for similar to your book. Me, I went with 8.5 x 8.5. Not too big or not too small for little hands.
  5. Download a photo editing program, I used Paint.NET, to help size the illustrations. Adobe will work too.
  6. Purchase an ISBN. That will help your books get into libraries.Who doesn’t want that, right? You can use the same number for IngramSpark and Amazon publishing.
  7. Use the cover templates provided by IngramSpark and Amazon or whichever publisher you decide. Each template is different.
  8. Order proof copies before you finalize and publish. Hard lesson.

My tips don’t apply to an ebook. No, this post is about producing a print picture book.

Me Let's Discuss - Jeanswriting.comDo you want to write a picture book?

Have you written one already? Do share your tips.

Did I answer some of your questions?

 

Want more? Click and read…

A Story Board

Free Picture Book Thumbnail Templates for Writers and Illustrators

Picture Book Dummy, Picture Book Construction: Know Your Layout

Picture book layout templates

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What do you know about KDP Select?

Next week I will release my long-awaited new children’s picture book.

A Reluctant Little Prince gray-ebook

But here is my dilemma. I’ve never participated in KDP Select and I wonder if it will be helpful.

Have any of y’all used the Select program with any success?

Is it complicated to use?

Was it effective in selling your book?

I’m filled with questions and wanted to hear from all of you before I enroll.

Here are the rules as I understand:

  1. Sign up is for 90 days.
  2. I can’t sell or give electronic versions during the Select period. One exception, professional reviewers. There are two promotions available.
  3. The digital format of that book available exclusively through KDP while it’s enrolled in the program. That includes my website!
  4. It will also be included in Kindle Unlimited (KU) and the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library (KOLL).
    • As a member, I read a lot of books through KU.

So what say y’all?

What do you think about this program?

Links to more information about KDP Select, so keep reading.

Does KDP Select Make Sense Anymore? By 

The Pros And Cons Of Exclusivity By

Is KDP Select Right for You? By Marcy Kennedy

PS: Check out my sale! offers

In honor of my new book release, I’ve put on sale for $.99, A Most Reluctant Princess and Tryouts for Ben. After the launch of A Reluctant Little Prince, the e-books will return to their original price.

I’d love to hear from you, let me know how you’re doing! Leave a comment or click the “write me” tab or look for me on Twitter @jeancogdell, Facebook at jean.cogdell and Amazon.com, stop by and say hey! The lights are on, and I’m waiting.

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A Most Reluctant Princess by [Cogdell, Jean M.]             Tryouts for Ben by [Cogdell, Jean M]