Is it easy to write books for children?: Yes, according to some

How easy is it to write books for children? From my experience early on, I have heard people tell me various opinions on this. In fact, at one writer’s meeting, a fellow author scoffed and said he could write a children’s book in one night. There was nothing to it. I was so stunned I did not have a comeback remark. Of course, as I was driving home, I came up with a lot. Unfortunately, this is not the only time other writers have told me this genre was easy peasy.

That ticks me off. According to reports, this genre is one of the hardest to write. You have to write it in a language that is not above their hands or beneath them. The dialogue has to be just right.

Ask a kid to read your book. If they don’t like it by page two, they drop it and look for another book. Most adults will at least carry on to the end of the chapter.

In my first children’s book, I had kids from a daycare look it over, and the reviews were hard to hear, but I welcomed them because they gave me what I needed to fix it. Have an adult write a children’s book, and you can critique it but not through the eyes of a child.

A children’s book is like any other book. You have to have plots, characters, and a timeline that works together and does not fall apart. You still need to revise, edit and revise again. You still need to have a cover that shines on your work. You still need to send it through your beta and critique groups.

But aft all this, it finally hit me on how to reply the next time I hear this.
If you think writing a book for children is easy, go for it. Seriously. Go for it. After that, we will talk. But only after.

Commas are my Kryptonite: Oh boy they are

“Commas are my Kryptonite.”

I said this to my friend Gina one day. She laughed because she understood what that meant. She feels there is no such thing as too many commas, even when there is no need for them to be there. I am of the theory the less, the better, often leaving out spots where I should place a comma.

I am not a fan of commas. They serve their purpose, one of which is to irritate me when I need to figure out how to get it right in placement. But that is why I have an editor. She is worth her weight in gold to the commaless person who can not be bothered to learn where to put them.

What else is my Kryptonite now that I am thinking about it? I have issues with the word then compared to then and figuring how to use effect or affect.

Though, in fairness, I am getting there. I have gotten better as my editor has sent me edits over the years. See, even I can learn. I am sure there are other rules of grammar that are not coming to mind. Thanks to my editor, I can stick to writing.

What are your Kryptonites in writing or with the whole process of writing and having your manuscript published?

When does a series of a book end?

If you have written an ongoing series, when do you know it is time to end it?

I love reading series that make me wish they never will end. Eventually, it does. Then you have the series that makes you wonder how it should have stopped a volume or two ago.

My children’s series, at this moment, has three volumes, with the fourth one with my editor. My series, a true-life comedy, is a stand-alone book, but volume two is in its final edits with my editor. I have notes to write about half of another volume.

I am wondering if it is time to finish either series. But primarily, the series is geared toward children. Have I run out of ideas? Is there more to this series?

When a series goes on too long, it sours me on that series and sometimes the author.

Do I still have ideas for the fifth volume of my series? What else can I talk about that my fans and readers will want to read where this series concerns?

The concept comes from my Amazon parrot, Jasper, and his personality and our interaction. We rescued him in 1999 at the age of five. He has given me plenty of things to write on. It brings to the front children the problems and crises that are going on in the Amazon rainforest. I have discussed a few of these. My latest volume describes the poaching industry.

Researching online for other issues this precious resource has is something I need to dive into to see if there is another that I can wrap a story around. If I do find such a topic, I still need to take a step back and think if I should continue.

My other projects are rooting for me to stop so I can work on them. Besides being an author that writes for children, and a comedy writer, I have a drama, mystery, and a few other genres WIP waiting to see the day of light.

It tugs at me which route to go. I will need to ponder on this.

The Musings of A New Englander