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Writer's Room => Picture Books (PB) => Topic started by: melanie-wilpon on September 17, 2020, 08:29 AM

Title: PB? Story? Easy Reader?........Help!
Post by: melanie-wilpon on September 17, 2020, 08:29 AM
Ok so I'm  super new to writing. I always thought a Picture book, was a children's book with pictures on pretty much every page. That's what I had in mind when I wrote my book. However, I now know that's not the case.  I keep getting told its too long. I went from 1500+ to just under a thousand and I'm still getting told its too long. Ive also been told I structure it like a story book. So if my book is a story book, I'm perfectly fine with that but I feel kind of in limbo. I was really hoping to enter the Rising Kite contest but the only categories are PB, MG and YA. So where does that leave me? Ugh.  I'm feeling lost and maybe just cranky. I just had to vent. :bewildered

p.s. I'm looking to self publish, so maybe none of this even matters?? :shrug
Title: Re: PB? Story? Easy Reader?........Help!
Post by: Vijaya on September 17, 2020, 12:09 PM
Melanie, in the beginning there's so much to process and take in. Why not submit to the rising kite contest anyway? It's a great way to learn, esp. since it's an SCBWI regional contest and you'll get some feedback as well.

One suggestion: follow the guidelines exactly. So many people get disqualified for this simple reason. And who knows, you might even win!

You can get some feedback here before your submit it, to try to make it the best you can. Just because you plan to publish it yourself doesn't mean you want to put out a substandard story. Writers learn from other writers. Read lots of PBs, both classic and contemporary. And you might be able to see some parallels with your own work. Study those authors intensely. There are lots of how-to books as well for self-study. Some of my favorites are by Ann Paul Whitford, Anastasia Suen, Barbara Sueling.

Happy reading and writing.
Title: Re: PB? Story? Easy Reader?........Help!
Post by: Debbie Vilardi on September 17, 2020, 06:01 PM
The times they have a changed on you. It used to be that picture books were exactly what you said. The category included longer story books for the seven- and eight-year olds and parents with more time to read to their kids and shorter books for the four to six group. Over time, folks pushed those older readers into chapter books and art that supported the story and added to it rather than just illustrating it became more prominent. This led to a decline in picture story books to the point where they are nearly non-existent. Leaving the shorter books (500 words or fewer) for the youngest listeners, ages 2-6.

Sometimes a longer fiction PB will get through, if every word needs to be there. (Nonfiction is allowed to be longer.) Here's the place to post for critiques on the board: And here's a place to ask for a manuscript exchange:
Title: Re: PB? Story? Easy Reader?........Help!
Post by: melanie-wilpon on September 18, 2020, 07:02 AM
Thank you! :thankyou