Do you struggle with a little reader?

Want to turn your little one into a book lover?

Everyone struggles with getting a kid to read. But once you get them hooked, they are hooked for life.

My daughter is a third-grade teacher and she says the students who struggle the most, in all subjects, are the ones who struggle with reading.

Everyone agrees how important it is to get a kid to not only read, but enjoy what they are reading.

Reading is the gateway to success.

Although summer is almost over, it’s not too late to inspire your kiddo.

Dr. Seuss quote, The more that you read...
Dr. Seuss

Here are a few tips to help turn your kid into an avid reader:

  • Kids love to imitate, so let them witness you reading.
  • Find out what type of books their classmates or playmates enjoy.
  • Gear the books you choose with your kid’s interest.
  • Read to them every night.
  • Introduce early reader chapter books around age 6. Reading a few pages a night will add anticipation for the next night.
  • Let your kid know reading is not an option. Do whatever necessary to get your kid to read just 15 minutes a day. (I’m not above a bribe.)
  • Get your kid their own library card. (Makes them feel important.) And yes even toddlers.
  • Search Amazon for books on things they like to play with or ask your local librarian for suggestions.
  • Let them pick out a book, even if it’s not your cup of tea. What they read is not as important as getting them to read. One may prefer funny books such as Diary of a Whimpy Kid, your other kid might prefer mysteries, letting them explore the library or local bookstore empowers them.
  • If your kid picks a book you think is too hard for them to read, read it together. You’ll be surprised at how much they will learn.
  • Don’t give up! Eventually, reading will click if you don’t quit.

For the gamer in your house try Minecraft Books: Diary of a Minecraft Zombie Book 1: A Scare of a Dare by Zack Zombie. There are 18 books in the series. That should keep them busy for a while. Or how about Trapped in a Video Game by Dustin Brady 

Have a little princess in the family? Then you’re very lucky because there are dozens of books to choose from, click here to get started. Books for a Princess.

Budding sports star? How about Goodnight Baseball by Michael Dahl or any of the other many books from baseball, soccer, football, or hockey. 

Everyone wants their kid to succeed, so remember…

Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” – Margaret Fuller


Do you have a tip for turning a reluctant reader into a bookworm?

How important do you think reading is for a kid?

What age did you start reading to your kids?


For more reading tips, click on the links below.


12 Ways to Motivate Reluctant Readers by Laura Candler

How can I encourage a reluctant reader?




How to plan for a successful writing year

Well, everyone knows I’m as slow as molasses about achieving my writing goals, but this year I’m gonna try harder to reach them.Tony Robbins quote We overestimate what we can do in a year and understatement what we can do in five
So, for those of us still working up the nerve to plan our writing projects, I found a really good and informative article. What I like about 2019 Writing Resolutions that Stick: How to Plan Your New Writing Year  By  August Birch
  • A resolution is not enough. Make a plan for each day. (Mine: write posts ahead of time and spend the rest of my time writing on WIP.)
  • Just like a map makes travel less complicated so a plan makes keeps you on the right writing track. (Stick to my plan.)
  • Opportunities abound for writers but so does competition. Compete better by practicing. (I will practice writing something every day.)
  • Breaking a big project down into smaller sections makes it easier. Sort of like eating an elephant. (old joke, I don’t really eat elephants.)
  • Big ambitions are fine as long as you don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Remember slow and steady often wins the race. (Well I’ve got the slow down perfectly.)
  • Whatever your writing goals may be, they all start with one step. (Or one word.)
  • One word begets 500, 500 leads to 1000 – just get writing. (I’m on it.)
  • Don’t set your goals by the yardstick of other writers. (Wish I wrote like King or Rowling, sigh. But, I gotta be me.)
  • Push your self out of your comfort zone. (I’m already there.)

Quote Norman Vincent -Shoot for the moon

2019 Writing Resolutions that Stick: How to Plan Your New Writing Year By  August Birch

Do you keep a diary? I don’t but maybe I should.

Do you have a 2019 resolution? I don’t…

But I’m setting a few goals for myself. How about you, goals for this year?





How to Tweet and Blog Effectively

Think you’re too busy for Twitter?

Well there is a way to tweet and keep writing. twitter-117595_640

Over at Positive Writer, Bryan Collins lists 6 tips on how we can be successful on Twitter and not let our writing suffer.

Twitter and Facebook are tools writers use to engage readers, not annoy them.

My favorite is number 5, there Bryan gets us started with 10 great hashtags.

Tweets can get lost without hashtags.

Need more than 10? How about 100?

Then click on Areogramme Writers’ Studio for 100 hashtags every writer should know. Thanks Bryan for the link.

Here are 7 more tips for success from Janice Wald.

I love comments, almost as much as I love clicks, so after you pass my post on to your Facebook and Twitter pals let me what you think. If you’re not already, please follow me @jeancogdell on Twitter and jean.cogdell on Facebook!


Do you start stories with a nutgraf?

Nut what?

Sunday afternoon and I’m breezing through my emails. I need to pay bills, after all, it’s the first of the month. However, my inbox is overflowing. But we all know it’s more fun to read emails, than pay bills. Click, delete, click, read a little, click, read a good story, click… whoa.

Nut what? I continued reading IMITATION IS PART OF BEING A WRITER, by Jane Friedman. So intrigued, I clicked on the links she provided and kept right on reading. Love it when I discover new information that makes me a better writer. Thanks, Jane.


Nutgraf is slang for the editorial heart of a story.
It tells the reader what the story is about and why the reader should care.

Next link I learned from Theo Pauline Nestor, who explains on her blog WRITING IS MY DRINK, not only what a nutgraf is but how to use a nutgraf “trick”. (Also spelled Nut Graf or Nut Graph).

Maybe you’re shaking your head, thinking, Jean, you didn’t know what a nutgraf was? Nope, I didn’t, but I do now and I’m excited to practice.

Do you want to know?

Head on over to and read NUTGRAFS FOR MEMOIRS AND PERSONAL ESSAYS to begin your quest.

Happy writing!

thankyou note card