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Page turns

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Can we talk about page turns in picture books? What makes a successful page turn? Tips and suggestions for writing and illustrating a good page turn? How do you up the suspense or what will happen next factor?
Any and all insight and information on page turns is welcome and appreciated.

Thanks
#1 - February 24, 2022, 12:21 PM

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I think a lot of page turns rely on incomplete sentences, sometimes with ellipses, to wait to see what happens (the rest of the sentence) on the next page. One way to format a PB is to type out page spreads and think of how you can create that page turn by specifying what words you want on each page spread. When I do that I do this:
pg. 4-5
blah blah blan

pg. 6-7
blah blah blah

If you're an author only, one thing you could do to study page turns is to type up PBs that you think have successful ones with page numbers like I noted above so you know where the page turn is happening.

I hope this helps!
#2 - February 24, 2022, 12:37 PM
Freaky Funky Fish ( Running Press Kids, May 2021)
Tell Someone (Albert Whitman, October 2021)
Peculiar Primates (Running Press Kids, October 2022)

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Plus think about "conceptual elipses" - not actual "..." (because you can't end every page with an elipsis or part sentence). By that, I mean ending the previous page with a full sentence that simply makes you want to know what happens next so that you turn the page. E.g. The same thing happened every day, until one day it didn't. (Instead of "but one day...")
Or Betty was a child with a particular problem.
Excuse my poor examples. I hope they make the point though. : )
#3 - February 24, 2022, 01:14 PM
Odd Bods: The World's Unusual Animals - Millbrook Press 2021
Tiny Possum and the Migrating Moths - CSIRO Pub. 2021

www.juliemurphybooks.com

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Jenny, this is a great question and I'm always making physical dummies to see where best to place the page turns. I think of suspense and resolution. Or surprise.
#4 - February 24, 2022, 01:41 PM
Little Thief! Max & Midnight, Bound, Ten Easter Eggs & 100+ bks/mags
https://vijayabodach.blogspot.com https://bodachbooks.blogspot.com

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Julie, perfect examples! Yes, you are right, you wouldn't want actual ellipses on every page, but I have been know to overuse them and the em dash, LOL. Thankfully CPs and editors call me out on them. :-)
#5 - February 24, 2022, 01:43 PM
Freaky Funky Fish ( Running Press Kids, May 2021)
Tell Someone (Albert Whitman, October 2021)
Peculiar Primates (Running Press Kids, October 2022)

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Thank you. These are great ideas and examples.

Among other things, I think that having good page turns is something that sets picture books apart from other books.

I'm working on having a good page turn mind set when I write.
#6 - February 24, 2022, 03:29 PM

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Something else I've seen is a single word (or part of an object) that hints at something to come. The full idea or image is on the next page.

Questions also work. The answer is on the next page.

And for images, die cuts (dye cuts?) and other fancy features can help too. Think about the holes that hungry caterpillar chews and wanting to see what was on the other side of them.
#7 - February 24, 2022, 06:14 PM
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