A child’s mind is like clay on a potter’s hand. It is an unknown shape, waiting to be molded and guided to reach its full potential and to be the best pottery that it can be. Furthermore, whatever is being fed on them eventually become big factors on whatever qualities and dispositions the children may acquire and develop as they grow up.
As a writer for children’s books, there are many things that should be taken into consideration. As much as it is an enjoyable thing, a lot of responsibilities are also tied up with the task. After all, writers’ voices become prominent and influential through the books that they publish. In order to make the writing task easier and less burdensome, here are some things to remember.
Know or Specify the Age Group of Your Readers
The basic thing about writing is to know your audience. In that case, you will be able to level your thinking to theirs. As a writer, you would want to be able convey your message and your story as clearly as possible. At the same time, because you are writing children’s books, you would want your readers to enjoy and to relax while they are reading your book. That way, the children would end up liking your stories and seek more of your works.
Forget Your Age; Remember How You are as a Child
After knowing your audience, you as a writer, must be able to relate to them. Think like a child. Remember how you believed in rainbows and unicorns when you were a kid. Remember how you used to imagine objects having their own lives. Remember how you used to imagine animals talk or even fight. Think outside the box. Forget about your job (if you have one other than writing), forget about your lazy husband, forget about your bills, and forget not having money to buy the things that you want. Remember the simplemindedness you had as a kid. Remember how a bar of chocolate can make you stop crying, remember how the rain used to be so enjoyable instead of it being annoying.
Fill Your Book with Pictures and Not Words
After returning back to being a kid, you’d realize that in order to get the attention of your readers, you would need to be as creative as you can be. You don’t need to literally put pictures in your book although putting them would get the readers’ attention more. If you are a good writer and you want to keep being one, know how to show your story. Children have vivid and wide imagination. Play with it. Use as many adjectives as you can. Your readers would be able to enjoy reading your book more if they could see and imagine the setting and the characters while they are sitting in their living room, reading your book. Allow them to travel, bring them to places and create them the worlds that they would enjoy and never forget as they grow up.
Show Positivity and Enthusiasm
Children are naturally happy. They become easily hyped up with simple things. Take advantage of it. Present to them a happy world, encourage them to become enthusiastic. Of course, you would want your readers to learn about the world as much as they can but having children as your audience, you would want them to keep their childhood joyful and unforgettable. You wouldn’t want to present them all the bitterness of the world. Save it up for them to think of when they grow old enough to face the problems.
You’d need to use characters as villains and unfortunate situations for your plot twists most of the time though. That is given.
What you have to do is to make sure that it wouldn’t give a bad impression to the children. Remember, their minds are still on the development process. If you present something bad or unfortunate, always be specific and patient enough to set the bigger picture. As much as possible, explain why those things have to happen, make them understand why certain characters turned out bad. End your story with a positive note. Give the children a smile on their faces as they close the book, knowing that the characters they read about or journeyed together for a few hours had a happily ever after.
Take a Break, Breathe Fresh Air
Running out of ideas sometimes becomes a hindrance into reaching your full potential. Sometimes, instead of enjoying what you do, it becomes a burden and a frustration. When you reach the point of not knowing what to write anymore, take a break. Do not frustrate yourself or else it will show up on what you are writing. Close your laptops, put down your pen, go out of your library or your office and take a walk.
Taking walks is an effective way to unclog your mind, refresh your ideas and get inspiration. Take time to look around you as you walk through your neighborhood. Talk to people on the way, talk to your family, ask your kids how their day went or even cook your husband some dinner. Look at children playing and while you are having some time off, let your mind wander as well. Appreciate the little things around you. Then, when your mind seems to be ready, you can go back to your notebook and laptop with fresh new ideas to write, inspirations for new characters and imagination for new plot twists.
Be your Own Reader, Make Your Own Family Your First Audience
Before reaching the publication for your book, read what you have made and evaluate your own story. It usually works when you enjoy doing things with your kids. Make your family as your first audience. See their reactions and ask for their comments. Maybe they could suggest better ideas for some parts and give some revisions to make your story a better one. Remember that you have to relate with your audience. It is best to get some comments from them before you have your book finally set out for publication and circulation.