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How to write for children
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A Review of How to Write for children by Louise Jordan

 

Topic

A step by step guide offering readers all they have to know about children's book writing, from toddlers books to teenagers, fiction and non-fiction, picture books or a reading series. By the end of this book, readers should have mastered all the techniques mentioned, so as to be able to have a book ready for submission to the right publisher.

Reviewed by Liana Metal

HOW TO WRITE FOR CHILDREN

AND GET PUBLISHED

By Louise Jordan

Piatkus, Judy Piatkus (publishers) Ltd, 5 Windmill Street,

London W1P 1HF 1999 ,Paperback, ISBN 0-7499-1880-2

UK 9.99, 186pp, Highly Recommended

Louise Jordan has worked for many years in childrens publishing. She is currently a reader for Puffin and runs The Writers Advice Center for Childrens books ( tel /fax 0181-874 7347 London, UK ) , a literary consultancy service.

There are many books in the market for new writers, but very few for childrens book writers, so, this book is the essential guide for all those who dont know how to go about it.

HOW TO WRITE FOR CHILDREN is not just another How-to book , it is a self-study mini course, teaching thoroughly the aspiring writer how to approach children's writing and succeed. Treat this book rather as you would a correspondence course, Louise writes: Start at the beginning with Lesson One and progress through to the end of the book.

Packed with excellent advice and practical exercises, this book includes invaluable information on the market, the technique of writing, the presentation of work and publisher approach. It is a comprehensive guide exploring every aspect of childrens writing as the reader can find here all kinds of markets, all genres of childrens writing , as well as practical exercises at the end of each chapter. 'Find a published picture book that you feel works well, Louise says. Using your own idea and text , copy the lay out , trying to keep to approximately the same number of words. '

There are seventeen chapters in all, each one dealing with a separate topic. Abundant advice is also included on how to write a plot, to create a strong character and how to approach a publisher. 'The main thing to remember when submitting a manuscript is not to give the publisher any excuse to reject your work without proper consideration. Publishers want to find good new writers ..., ' the author advises..

At the end of the book , there is an appendix with useful addresses of organizations, publications, and training centers. On the last pages there is a Prizes and Awards section . The Macmillan Prize, The Children's Book Award, Mother Goose Award and Signal Poetry Award are only a few of the list. To sum up, in this book you have all the advice and information you need at your fingertips .

HOW TO WRITE FOR CHILDREN is a highly informative, useful, clearly laid out , home study- course book that caters for all those who wish to enter the world of children's writing . It fills the reader with loads of invaluable information , advice and practical exercises that are absolutely necessary to have and master in order to get published.

An excellent book the new writer or the writer-to-be cannot simply afford to be without it.

Related titles:

The Essential A-Z of Creative Writing , Cassell

The Fiction Writers Handbook , Piatkus

Writing Your Life Story, Piatkus

501 Writers Questions Answered, Piatkus

All the above are written by Nancy Smith, collaborator at The Writers Advice Center.

Related magazines:

Childrens Book News, Book Trust, UK, Website: www.booktrust.org.uk

e-mail: kim@booktrust.org.uk

 

 

 

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