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Picture Books (PB) / Re: Running into a Wall (Question about Voice)
« Last post by Vijaya on November 29, 2022, 02:54 PM »
I hear you. Just begin. It doesn't matter that you don't have the right voice for it yet. You will get it by writing and playing with different styles. Check out my interview with Carolyn Fraiser who wrote a lyrical PB. That's NOT how it started: https://vijayabodach.blogspot.com/2022/11/a-conversation-with-carolyn-bennett.html And good luck!
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Picture Books (PB) / Running into a Wall (Question about Voice)
« Last post by amanda-mueller on November 29, 2022, 01:46 PM »
I'm running into a writer's block wall here -- but it's not at all where I expected. Any motivation or help is appreciated!

I have the plot and outline finished for my first book. It would be a picture book; working title is More Than a Meal. It is about an unlikely (and unexpected!) friendship between a butterfly and a spider, and as an added bonus I am hoping to draw attention to the migration patterns of endangered Monarchs.

Now that all the pieces are in place....

Nothing.

I can't nail the correct voice and I feel silly and bland when I sit down to revise the copy. Any tips here?


A bit of background:
This is a joint project between my father and myself -- the concept is his idea and I absolutely love it, so he asked me to make it happen.

I was an avid writer as a child and always thought I would  publish a novel as an adult. I ended up working as a journalist, but have let creative writing fall by the wayside for more than 15 years at this point. I am now trying to get my inspiration back, but I have to admit that writing for young children was never something that was on my radar. I have a suspicion that it may be impeded by the fact that I now work as a Public Safety spokesperson and I've only been writing and speaking about investigations for years.
 
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The Red Umbrella by Christina Diaz Gonzalez.
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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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