By Cory Putman Oakes
My next book, The Second Best Haunted Hotel on Mercer Street, is coming out from Abrams/Amulet on Aug. 18 and is now available for preorder. To celebrate, I’m taking over Cynsations this week to talk about spooky middle grade!
Today’s post is on craft. I reflect on where I got the initial idea for the The Second Best Haunted Hotel on Mercer Street and the long road to actually writing it.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Cory Putman Oakes on Writing Spooky Middle Grade Books »
By Tom Angleberger
I’m coming up on the 10th anniversary of Origami Yoda (Amulet, 2010) in a month or two. And it won’t be long until I hit the 20th anniversary of quitting my day job and deciding to really try being an author.
Have I learned anything? Gained any wisdom? Can I impart one piece of advice that I’ve learned?
Continue Reading Guest Post: Tom Angleberger on Children’s Literature as a Team Sport »
By Kate Messner
I’ll start this post with a confession. I don’t really have any secrets.
The truth is, when my first novel came out in 2009, I made all of the same overeager mistakes other debut writers make when that first book is released–over-promoting and dragging my wonderfully supportive family to book event after book event for an entire season.
(My daughter was nine then.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Kate Messner on The Secrets to Writing Lots of Books, Promoting Them, and Still Having a Life »
By Abigail Hing Wen
After twelve years of writing and hundreds of rejections as I learned to write, I can’t quite believe my first novel is coming out in just eight weeks.
My biggest struggle had always been my characters. I read dozens of character craft books and asked for advice from character gurus like Coe Booth and Sandra Nickel.
Even as a student at Vermont College of Fine Arts,
Continue Reading Guest Post: Abigail Hing Wen on Character Development the Brutally Hard Way »
By Linda Joy Singleton
My First Critique Group
When I was a new young writer, a friend invited me to her critique group. I was told to bring a chapter of my work-in-progress to share. It was a casual group open to many writers. I had no idea what to expect and was so shy that reading in front of a dozen-plus writers terrified me.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Linda Joy Singleton on Critiquing Critique Groups »
By Carol Lynch Williams
I’ve always been a writer.
The first thing I wrote, and produced, was a play. There were two members of the cast (myself and my younger sister), and one member in the audience. My grandmother, Nana.
I don’t think I was much more than seven years old.
Still, I composed a musical score. (I could sing it for you right now.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Carol Lynch Williams on Writing Craft, Perseverance & Writing Life »
By Carol Coven Grannick
One word permeated my first year as a full-time writer: “Submit!” I added an exclamation point because it deserves one. I’ll explain….
On June 3, 2018, I left my retirement job (having previously retired from my private practice as a Clinical Social Worker) at a beloved and extraordinary early childhood center to work for the first time in my life as a full-time writer.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Carol Coven Grannick: Submit! The Discovery of My First Year as a Full-Time Writer »
September is #WorldKidLit Month, a time to notice if world literature is reaching kids in the form of translations.
By Avery Fischer Udagawa
The movie “You’ve Got Mail” recently turned 20, with a New York Times critic noting both its staying power and its “dark commentary on how capitalism absorbs its critiques.” After all, this classic rom-com has the chain bookstore owner Joe Fox (Tom Hanks) woo the indie children’s bookstore owner Kathleen Kelly (Meg Ryan) while putting her indie out of business,
Continue Reading Guest Post: Avery Fischer Udagawa: Our Children’s Books Put America (and English) First »
By Janet Wong
It’s the start of a new year—the school year—the real new year to many of us.
Are you ready for a vacation already?
If you are a writer, consider this: Sign up this month for a conference, something—anything—having to do with books. Why?
Blogs like this one can be incredibly inspiring and easy to read in the comfort of your kitchen or office,
Continue Reading Guest Post: Janet Wong: Happy New Year! (It’s Time for a Vacation) »
By Carla Killough McClafferty
I love true stories about people, which is why I write biographies. While I include names, places, events, dates, and accomplishments, I want them to be a natural part of the story.
Equally important to me is that I craft the text so that readers will feel something about the person I’m writing about. I don’t tell them what to feel. I trust that readers will supply their own emotions.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Carla Killough McClafferty on Evoking Feelings in Nonfiction »