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Thank you for the books you suggested, Debbie and danalapomy1010! I'll check out the stories!
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I don't know about any books. But my father told me his story.
I'm a first generation American Latina.



Ha, maybe that's something you can write about!
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Picture Books (PB) / Re: Is this a good idea for a PB?
« Last post by C. Louise Donovan on November 26, 2022, 09:17 AM »
I love the combination of Debbie's and Vijaya's ideas. You could even stretch Vijaya's into a modern-day GIFTS OF THE MAGI.  I would suggest a more original title.  There are already several books called THE PERFECT GIFT.  As a side note, hats off to all knitters, (pun intended).   I was a very smart kid who learned things quickly, but when my mother tried to teach me to knit, she was forced to give up in frustration.
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Picture Books (PB) / Re: Is this a good idea for a PB?
« Last post by Vijaya on November 26, 2022, 08:56 AM »
You've rec'd good advice, Anna. I would also think about adding in layers--an element of sacrifice is such a good way to reinforce the idea of love. Giving up something treasured to incorporate into the hat. You'll also want to structure your story so that there are obstacles and frustrations that the boy has to overcome until he nearly gives up on the whole idea but then he gives one final push to get through and then there's the reward. Think about the rule of three. Enjoy writing your story.
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Picture Books (PB) / Re: Is this a good idea for a PB?
« Last post by Debbie Vilardi on November 25, 2022, 06:49 PM »
Maybe, it's not a neighbor the boy tells, but his grandmother who looks after him one or two days a week. And then she teaches him over a month or so. Perhaps she can't knit herself due to arthritis or poor vision. It could even be the great grandmother. Obstacles come up as they have to keep it a secret for so long. Just thoughts.

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Picture Books (PB) / Re: Is this a good idea for a PB?
« Last post by anna-paulson on November 25, 2022, 04:57 PM »
The hat could easily be ruined in many ways. It could be snagged, chewed by a dog, run over by a car, accidentally left out in the rain, or gotten so old it frayed and fell apart.

I like your basic idea. What the little boy gives is love. His mother knows the actual object doesn't matter. I wonder, though, about the knitting. I have knitted for many years and have taught children to knit. There is far more finesse involved than non-knitters realize, and it takes a long time for a child to learn to even cast on. Certainly more than a day. Knitting a hat would take a new knitter quite a while.

I know I'm being far more literal here than might be necessary, but is there some other gift he could give that would be more believable? Could he bake something, or build something, or find something to replace a treasured object? In the process of baking, building or replacing, he could even sacrifice something of his own. The process would present obstacles to overcome and could add some warmhearted humor.

Thanks for the advice.

I chose knitting because I wanted something young boys are not usually seen doing for the craft.  Also, and I will admit that I forgot to put it in the main post, the neighbor teaches him by starting the hat, so he never has to cast on.  James also discovers that he loves knitting and has a bit of a talent for it.

And don't worry about being too literal, as a fellow knitter I was thinking the same thing when this story popped in head lol
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Picture Books (PB) / Re: Is this a good idea for a PB?
« Last post by Pons on November 25, 2022, 04:34 PM »
The hat could easily be ruined in many ways. It could be snagged, chewed by a dog, run over by a car, accidentally left out in the rain, or gotten so old it frayed and fell apart.

I like your basic idea. What the little boy gives is love. His mother knows the actual object doesn't matter. I wonder, though, about the knitting. I have knitted for many years and have taught children to knit. There is far more finesse involved than non-knitters realize, and it takes a long time for a child to learn to even cast on. Certainly more than a day. Knitting a hat would take a new knitter quite a while.

I know I'm being far more literal here than might be necessary, but is there some other gift he could give that would be more believable? Could he bake something, or build something, or find something to replace a treasured object? In the process of baking, building or replacing, he could even sacrifice something of his own. The process would present obstacles to overcome and could add some warmhearted humor.
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Picture Books (PB) / Is this a good idea for a PB?
« Last post by anna-paulson on November 25, 2022, 01:46 PM »
This story came to me as I was knitting a sweater for my dad's Christmas present.  Please note this idea hasn't been completely ironed out. 

The working title is: The Perfect Gift

The story is about a boy named James who is trying to find his mother the perfect birthday present.  James can't find it until he learns his mother's favorite hat, which was knitted by her grandmother, is ruined.  He tries to  have his neighbor make a new one, but the neighbor is going out of town the next day.  However,  the neighbor can give him the items to knit a new hat and offers to teach him how to knit, so James can make it himself.  James knits the hat, but it doesn't look as nice as the one his great-grandma made.  Without anything else to give, James gives the hat to his mother while saying he is sorry that it isn't perfect.  But his mother says it is the perfect gift because it was made by her son who learned a new skill too.

The End

This story feels right for a picture book, but I can't be sure.  I'm also stuck on how the hat is ruined. 

All thoughts and comments are welcome.
Thanks for reading
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Kidlit Genres / Re: How to Pitch This?
« Last post by stefanie-tatalias on November 22, 2022, 07:08 PM »
When you say the book is illustrated...are you the illustrator? I see you have a put a lot of time and effort into the project, with so many books already written...are you complete married to the work you have already written? I am wondering if this whole project might make a great graphic novel, targeted at either YA or MG. Then the PB element would wind up being the first few pages. Of course you would need to be versed and interested in graphic novels, as well as interested in rewriting. Sometimes great ideas need a different format to reach their target audience.
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Thanks all for great feedback. I have a style of creating dioramas which I photograph and then adapt in Photoshop so all this is encouraging. Good point about looking dated! I don't plan to have photos of any people/children just objects/figures. Really helpful. I'm going to look up the books everyone has mentioned!

I just want to say, as an editor, that I feel this is an entirely viable approach. If you want examples, see this fall's Come On In! There's a Party in this Book by Jamie Michalak, with charming diorama illustrations by Sabine Timm.

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