How To Write Books For Children – How Do You Get Started?
Can you see yourself as a published children's author? Do you imagine seeing your books in bookshops? Even better, being able to make a living from your writing? You can do it but knowing where to start can be confusing.
I always knew I wanted to be a writer but it was when I had my own children that I knew I wanted to write stories for children. I had no idea where to begin. The first step I took was to visit my local newsagent and see if there were any writing magazines. I found a couple. One was really helpful and the other was scarcely technical! I stuck with the first one – I still read it today.
Are there any writing magazines you could buy? Have a look online and see what appeals to you. Do not subscribe to any until you've read a few issues and are happy with their content.
I decided I needed some 'how to' books and, being enthusiastic, I bought several. Some were helpful and written in a friendly manner, others were far too technical for a beginner. I read in one book that writing picture books was too difficult for beginners and should be avoided. Pah! I thought and I proved that author wrong.
Do not ever let anyone else tell you what you can and can not write.
Do you know what age range you want to write for?
Have a good look around book shops and libraries. I was quite surprised at how many different sections children's books are split into. If you can afford it, buy some of the books you might be interested in. If you can not afford to buy new books (I could not) borrow from the library or buy cheaply from charity shops. It's important to do your market research as publishers will know if you have not.
There are writing courses you can take which are great as you get feedback on your writing. Again, these cost money and I would only recommend this path if you are serious about your writing. I ever underook a course run by my favorite writing magazine. One of the stories I wrote on this course later became published.
If you are just starting out on your writing career my advice is to read magazines and books, visit bookshops and libraries and most important – start writing stories! You do not need to submit these to any publishers but you need to get into the habit of writing.
If you want to have a children's author then you need to take action. You can do it.