Enter your email
for blog updates



Are you a closet writer, too? Maybe a night owl like me?

Welcome to this wonderful, frustrating, intoxicating world of writing!

The most important thing I ever did as a writer was live in the downstairs bedroom of our new house when I was 13. This isolated me from the rest of the family, allowed me to keep bohemian hours…and to write.

So, my advice is to isolate. Get miserable. And grab a pen (or a keyboard.)

Other advice about writing poetry (and picture books–they’re connected!)? Explore the blog, Poetry for Children, by Sylvia Vardell, Read ALL THE SMALL POEMS by Valerie Worth, check out Pomelo Books‘ award-winning poetry anthologies. Read works by Irene Latham,  Charles Waters, Amy Ludwig VanDerwater, Janet Wong, Antoinette Portis, Susan Goldman Rubin, and more–many, MANY more!  Click here for one “best” list.

Also, if I am stuck and can’t figure out how or what to write, I type out a poem or a picture book I like and then, inserting my subject, I imitate, as closely as possible, the rhythm, the rhyme scheme (if it rhymes) and the style. This exercise has gotten me out of many tight spots!

On submitting a manuscript or poem

Terry Dunnahoo, who I call the Johnny Appleseed of children’s book writers in Southern California, taught us this: when you are ready to submit your writing, first create a ranked list of several prospective publishers. Then submit your polished manuscript to your top choice. If/when the manuscript is rejected, it won’t land—clunk—in your inbox. Though you may feel depressed and unable to move, you’re ready with the next publisher’s submission requirements! Your manuscript will fly off to that publisher almost on its own.

And one more thing: this is a rocky road, this writing road. It is. You may decide that the rejection is more than you can handle…and that’s okay to decide. But take a look at this 2:12 video of advice to aspiring writers. Perhaps it will help you.

Share your writing with a friend ~

Share your writing with a friend ~

Social Widgets powered by AB-WebLog.com.