There are hundreds of people walking around with the dream to become a children’s writer. However, they may be unsure of where to start or don’t how if they can learn to write. Like anything, writing a children’s book doesn’t happen overnight and there are specific techniques you can use to increase your chances of both completing a viable manuscript and being published.
Become an Observer
When it comes to writing fiction, especially children’s books, it’s all in the details. Most people go through their day being a part of the action. However, to be a productive and effective writer, you need to begin to look through the lens, so to speak. Just as a photographer has to take a step back in order to capture a beautiful shot, an author also has to spend more time observing- surroundings, scenarios, conflicts and human nature.
Make it an Automatic Habit
Once you start observing, you might find yourself analyzing every situation you find yourself in, with your book or plot in mind. This is a productive exercise. Keep a secondary dialogue going in your head with observations on what is happening around you.
Inspiration is a Myth
While there are certainly times when you will touch those computer keys and the story will seemingly fly off your fingers, those events are usually the exception. Most inspiration is the result of good, old fashioned discipline. The more you do something, the more opportunities you will find for real success.
Make Time for Creativity
When you discuss writing with other authors, almost everyone can relate to the classic case of writer’s block. The solution of this is to put that butt in the chair, plain and simple. Schedule your writing time and don’t let anything interfere. If your family life is distracting, get up early. Those are generally the most productive hours to learn to write anyways. Don’t get dressed, check email or eat breakfast until you have put in your time. An hour each morning should be sufficient to work on your children’s book.
It’s Not All About the Good Stuff
If you’ve ever been in a group of people while you listened to someone relate a truly horrible situation, you know just how interesting these stories are for both the storyteller and the group of listeners. What you might not realize is how you can use your embarrassing moments to improve your writing skills. Every story is built around a conflict, after all. Detail a particularly embarrassing moment, including as many details as possible. This will help you with your descriptive writing and also train your brain to recognize both details, and the human nature that is behind them. When writing a children’s book, use incidences from your childhood. Most good children’s book connect with the audience, so this exercise is very useful to your overall success. You may even find just the plot that you are looking for.
Some of the most successful people use goal setting as a tool to remain productive. Goals can be very important for an author. So much of writing is a personal endeavor, often with very little feedback. Make little goals as you learn to write and devise rewards that you find motivating to mark these goals. This can keep you going, even if you are unsure if you still have it in you. If you need outside encouragement, find a friend or mentor to report your goals and progress to on a weekly basis.