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NF Picture Book to Historical Fiction MG

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I am in the process of researching and writing NF picture book.  I then want to use that same research to write a MG fiction book on the same topic.  Are there any examples of writers doing this in the past?  Does this make sense or is a crazy idea?

Any perspective would be appreciated.  Thanks.
#1 - April 09, 2019, 02:30 PM

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I haven't heard someone going from PB to MG. I know Cynthia Levinson did her MG NF - We've Got a Job: The 1963 Birmingham Children's March and one person from that she turned into a PB - The Youngest Marcher: The Story of Audrey Faye Hendricks, a Young Civil Rights Activist years later. I don't think she went "into" the MG project with the idea of writing a PB later, my guess is she was inspired along the way.
#2 - April 09, 2019, 05:49 PM
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This is not exactly what you asked for but Jackie French is an Australian author who writes all genres for kids and for adults. I feel sure the research she does feeds into cross-genre projects. For example, she has a PB about ANZACs and Historical novels (YA) set in this era too.
http://www.jackiefrench.com/copy-of-award-winners
She's amazing!
#3 - April 09, 2019, 06:21 PM
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There is no reason not to do this as long as you don't plagiarize yourself. In the old days sci fi authors wrote short stories that later became novels all the time. (This might still happen.) Be sure you change your wording for concepts you explore (which you'd have to do anyway since PB voice and MG voice differ) and that any contract you have doesn't forbid a work on a similar topic for a very different audience. (Don't sign any contract that would do so. These books wouldn't be in direct competition with each other.) Go for it, and good luck.
#4 - April 09, 2019, 07:02 PM
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Charles, most of us who write NF re-use our research. You can certainly write a PB bio and then write a detailed biography for MG or write a magazine article or historical fiction. And sometimes a PB can morph into a MG book. I remember David Patenaude speaking about his book: Thin Wood Walls about the Japanese internment camps. It started out as a PB. His editor told him what he had was a good outline for a MG book!

Unless you are writing for hire, and you sell all rights, you needn't worry about plagiarizing yourself. Also, the audience for PB is different than the one for MG, so you wouldn't use the same arrangement of words. Many contracts have a non-compete clause. But at this stage, I would focus on the writing and not on the business aspects. When the time comes, you can scour your contract for anything that might limit you, anc cross it off.

So happy reading and writing! 
#5 - April 10, 2019, 05:39 AM
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What first comes to mind is Magic Tree House. For each fictitious story about Jack and Annie's time travels, there is a "Fact Tracker," a companion book that explores the topic through nonfiction. I would imagine there are plenty of authors who write a historical fiction book and reuse the information to create a nonfiction book as well. It's a shame to let all those extra facts that couldn't fit in the story go to waste, so why not do both
#6 - May 01, 2019, 03:27 PM

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