Despite attending writing classes, which herald the benefits of properly planning a novel, I still dive straight in, ‘pantsing it,’ with only a broad three act overview and a couple of character portraits. Why? Because I’m enthused. I have the dramatic first few scenes in my head and I want to get them down on… Read More Six Reasons to Write a Story Map
I went on the Tuesday and Thursday this year using the SCBWI members three day ticket. Fellow SCBWI’s have been asking if the Fair is worth it and I would say, yes, if you are gearing up for submission, if you want to meet/hear/talk to well known authors and publishers and if you want to find… Read More Notes from the London Book Fair
Part 1. Places We’ve had lots of conversations in my critique group lately about how to describe places and people. So I thought I would check out how children’s greatest and best authors tackle it, starting with place… Here’s an extract from… His Dark Materials, by Phillip Pullman. Directly ahead of the ship a mountain… Read More How to write fantastic descriptive passages
Karl Iglesias in Writing for Emotional Impact, states we can experience three different types of emotion when we read books or watch movies. Voyeuristic emotions relate to our curiosity about new information, new worlds and the relationship between characters. In this mindset we are interested onlookers but perhaps not fully emotionally engaged. Vicarious emotions are… Read More How to evoke emotion in your readers?
My second conference with amazing SCBWI BI… Started with some wise words from Natascha Biebow about evoking empathy not sympathy in our writing, and the importance of being in touch with our inner child. (The amount of piratey costumes at the launch party suggests the inner child part isn’t a problem for most SCBWIs.) And continued amusingly,… Read More Ahoy! SCBWI conference low-down
I first heard Eric Huang speak at the SCBWI Winchester conference last October. I was inspired by the creativity of the apps, characters and stories Made in Me were developing for Me Books – but what particularly struck a chord, was Eric’s suggestion that authors and illustrators should start thinking about themselves as creators. In… Read More Notes from a SCBWI Masterclass with Eric Huang – Picture books for the digital age
Part 1 – Structure and Layout Before we get creative let’s talk about structure and layout. Picture books are fairly formulaic. Most picture books have 32 pages of which around 24 pages make up the story. In theory up to 30 of the pages could be used for the story. There are also 24 page… Read More How to develop a picture book idea – structure and layout
So it’s Monday morning after the conference and my head is spinning with the volume of information I have scribbled in my notebook and the new contacts I have made this weekend. I am particularly excited about all the contacts. In the space of two days, I have found two fellow SCBWI members in my… Read More Feeling well and truly post conference SCBWI’ed!
I jumped at the chance to meet Pippa Goodhart and listen to her words of wisdom at the recent SCBWI Author Masterclass on Writing Picture Books in London. My children love her book You Choose; it’s so well thumbed it’s fallen apart! You Choose is a concept book with just 220 words. The words are… Read More Good Picture Book Advice from Pippa Goodhart – Keep it short!