The Beginner's Guide to Writing Children's Books

cover-imageI grew up going to the book mobile during the week and the library on the weekends. For me books were a constant source of pleasure and a free membership an economical marvel.

Now that I’m an expat parent, we stock books for our sons at home. Many nights we need a deft hand to mix in new titles among the stalwart favorites.

The more I read to little ones snuggled on my lap, the more I wanted to write for little ones everywhere.

That was the lab in which Everyday Wishes was born. The steps to writing a picture book are deceptively simple.

  1. Come up with a story line. You want to map out your text and ideal images on a set of double page spreads at least 24 pages long.
  2. Find an illustrator. This is a crucial moment because illustrators are key to the reading experience. You’ll agree on a fee, 1/4 upfront, the rest on delivery, and ask for pencil sketches of your scenes
  3. Refine the text with the illustrator. This part can take anywhere from a month to three, depending on everyone’s availability
  4. Get your text onto the page with a graphic designer. Determining your book size and font style is also another multi-stage process.
  5. Upload to your outlets of choice (Createspace and Kindle Direct Publishing are mine).
  6. Tell the world, get reviews, celebrate.

I’m very excited to share with the making of a picture book because this is the first introduction to MJ’s world with his friends. You’ll meet his mom and classmates in this episode. And there will be many more adventures to come!

Let me know if you are interested in receiving a review copy or would like to arrange a school visit. I’m planning a few additional languages so stay tuned.

What stories do you think children need to hear?