How to Write a Children’s Book

How to Write a Children’s Book

If you like entertaining children, you may want to know how to write a children’s book. Children’s books are books that teach children lessons, entertain them or give them inspiration. Good children’s books awaken the feelings and thoughts of children. Basically, the child that you were once is the same as the child that you can write a book for- Therefore, write a book that you are sure that you would find interesting to read if you were a child again.

How to write a children’s book in four simple steps

  • Preparation
  • Research

Conduct extensive research by reading several children’s books. This will help you in developing the ideas that you already have for writing a children’s book. In your research, find out what illustrations you can use in the book, whether to write a non-fiction or fiction book, whether the book should give inspiration or tell fairy tales among other attributes.

  • Choose your target age group

Perhaps, this is the trickiest bit of knowing how to write a children’s book. Children’s books cover children in different age brackets. For instance, you cannot come up with a book that children aged 7 years and others aged 13 years will enjoy reading. Depending on your ideas, the plot, theme and content, choose the age group that you will target with your book. Nevertheless, the book should be easy to read and understand for your target readers-

  • Determine the content of your book

You should determine the number of words to use in the book, pictures and illustrations. For younger children, a good book should include adequate artwork for complementing the writing. This implies that if you are not an artist you may have to hire one to draw the illustrations for you. When writing older children’s book, you can include diagrams, occasional images and drawings. However, make sure that the images, diagrams and drawings match the ideas of the book.

  • Chose the major components of the book

You need to start by noting down the main ideas of the book that you want to write. These should be based on whether you are writing a picture book, a non-fictional or fictional book. If you are writing a fictional book, make sure that you incorporate a message. This should be a positive lesson such as taking care of the environment, respecting the cultures of other people or simply looking after each other. The message should come out clearly without being forced-

  • Be creative

You need to recall what was inspiring you when you were a child. Explore such things and ideas. Tap sincere feelings and actions that you find sensible. If you are writing a non-fiction children’s book share knowledge that will enhance the development of the children that will read your book. Therefore, be creative and accurate to ensure that kids will learn and get entertained by reading your book.

  • Actual writing
  • Compose the first draft

Perhaps, actual writing is the most important part to master when it comes to writing children’s books. Do not be worried about how the first draft sounds. You should concentrate on writing down the story. Therefore, stop struggling to be a perfectionist.

  • Always remember the age of the target readers

This is very important because it enables you to use the right sentence structures, sentence length and vocabulary. Choose wording that is appropriate for your target age group. Nevertheless, while writing for children, you should always be concise and communicate clearly using a simple language-

  • Ensure that the book provides realistic outcome or resolution

Your book should have a strong ending or provide a realistic outcome. For fiction books, it is not a must that the ending be good or impressive to the reader. In fact, a book that does not have a happy ending teaches children that things do not always end up the way we expect. If you cannot write a strong ending for your book, you can leave it for some hours and then come back later after generating ideas in your mind.

III. Revising

  • Edit the manuscript

Editing makes the book better. This is an important step that should not be skipped by anyone who wants to know how to write a children’s book although some people overlook it. Revise your manuscript severally to ensure that it is completely polished. While editing or revising, you may notice that there are parts of the story that do not sound good. In that case, you need to rewrite them or include artwork or even change the tone of the story. If you cannot correct the work, discard it. Check your work for grammatical and spelling errors.

  • Show others your manuscript

You can start by showing your completed book to your close friends and family members. Some of your loved ones might not give you a straightforward response or reaction because they do not want to hurt your feelings. As such, you should consider enlisting a professional editing service. A professional editor will give an honest feedback with suggestions on where to rectify. If possible, read the manuscript to children who are the primary audience of your book. Also find out if librarians, teachers and parents are impressed by your book. These are the potential buyers of your book and they will only buy it if they find it interesting or appropriate for their children-

  • Publishing
  • Publish through a literary agent

If you want a traditional publisher to publish your book, the best thing to do is to find a literary agent that will assist you throughout the process. There are several agents that deal specifically with kid’s books- Send them query letters. If they pick your book, they will respond with suggestions on the corrections that you should make. If agents do not pick your book, you can send publishers a synopsis and query letter directly. Note that the process of publishing the book can take a lot of time without guarantees that the publisher will publish your book.

  • Self publish the book

In the current publishing world, self-publishing is a respectable and viable option. Look for online companies that can assist you in self-publishing your book. You can have several copies printed or have an ebook. You may also spend money but you will avoid the long process that is involved in traditional publishing.

More tips on how to write a children’s book

  • Plot

When writing a children’s book, make sure that you have a solid and properly developed plot. Conflict resolution in the story should be the basis of the lesson of the book. However, the conflict should be developed properly before resolution. If conflict must be used, it should be employed cautiously because it can confuse children.

  • Text

While writing a children’s book, ensure that text is organized properly into simple and short sentences and paragraphs. Use literary tools to make your story vivid. You can use a question to end each page or a method that will spark the curiosity of the reader. Additionally, ensure that there are repeated phrases throughout the text to grasp the attention of the reader.

  • Illustrations

Use illustrations to present main points or conflicts in the book. You can include them in the cover of the book or in the text.

  • Characterization

Ensure that the main character in the book has a dominant trait that young readers can identify with ease. Use both text and illustrations to present the traits of main characters. Do not use too much text in describing the characters in the book. Instead, use illustrations.

  • Conflict

Ensure that the story is limited to a single conflict that is being faced by the main character. This should be a conflict that the main character has to deal with or overcome. The conflict can be between individuals or between an individual and the society or between an individual and nature. It can also be a conflict between an individual and self. While determining the conflict to include in the book, know the common children’s concerns. They include acceptance, fear, physical growth and family dynamics- pdf.

Basically, knowing how to write a children’s book is very important especially if you are interested in writing for kids. It not only guides in you writing the book, but it also motivates you to write a better one.

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