Archive for the ‘Picture Books’ Category

re: Is Second-Person POV Good in Picture Books?

posted 7/10/18

Dear Editor…

I’m writing a picture book and find myself gravitating toward talking directly to the reader. I’m not sure if this is a good technique, and if so, if I have to do that in every spread to maintain consistency. I know if I’m talking to the reader, I need to maintain it throughout, but I don’t want the technique to get distracting. Advice?

Sincerely,
Talking To You

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re: Celebrate 4th of July with a Book!

posted 7/4/18

Dear Readers…

I celebrate every holiday with a book. It can be one I read myself, or that I share with my sons. Today my family celebrates the American Dream with Janet S. Wong’s picture book Apple Pie Fourth of July, stunningly illustrated by Caldecott Honoree Margaret Chodos-Irvine.  “Chow mien in our kitchen. / Chow mien! / Chinese food on the Fourth of July? / No one wants Chinese food / on the fourth of July, I say. / Fireworks are Chinese, Father says, / and hands me a pan full of sweet-and-sour pork.” Read on to hear why this book is particularly special to me as an editor.

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re: How Can Picture Book Readers Feel It If I Don’t Tell It?

posted 5/2/17

Dear Editor…

I’m writing a picture book. A reader recommended I remove the parts that say how the character feels physically when she’s scared. Here’s an example: “It looks taller than I remember. My stomach starts to hurt.” Other lines recommended for deletion: “My heart pounds just as loud.” “I swallow. My throat feels dry.” My crit group wanted more of those. I’d appreciate your experienced perspective about how to handle this to make PB stories the strongest.

Sincerely,
N

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re: Smarter to NOT Rhyme My Picture Book?

posted 10/18/16

Dear Editor…

I’ve learned my rhyming picture book manuscript needs A LOT of work—specifically, I need to learn more about meter. Daunting and exciting. I’m hearing, though, that some agents/editors are reluctant to consider rhyming picture books from unknown writers. Do you think my time would be better and more strategically spent by writing a non-rhyming version of the book, rather than working further on the rhyming version?  I’ve learned not to treat any of my writing too preciously, so I’m happy to follow either route, but just want to do what would benefit this project (and position it for a possible sale) the most.  I’d love to know your thoughts on that.

Sincerely,
To Rhyme or Not to Rhyme

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Revision Week: Salina Yoon

posted 5/31/16

Dear Readers…

Revision Week continues with Salina Yoon, author/illustrator of more than 160 books for kids. Salina’s characters Penguin and Bear are adored by young children around the world, and it’s an honor to have her here talking about the revision process with picture books, both the text and visual storylines. Please join Salina and The Editor for Day 2 of Revision Week, and enter to win today’s “Free Partial Edit” from The Editor.

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re: Must I Contact Descendants for Biography?

posted 12/14/15

Dear Editor…

During the recent Picture Book Idea Month hosted by Tara Lazar, I had a question that popped up (and was referred your way). I have a nonfiction biography I’m working on (creative nonfiction). If the person still has possible living descendants, do you track them down for permission to write about the historical person (if they’re not someone famous)? What would a publisher’s or editor’s perspective be on a project like this? Any idea?

Sincerely,
Jena

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re: Submitting Finished Art with Picture Book Manuscripts

posted 8/26/15

Dear Editor…

Do I need to have illustrations finished for a picture book before I try to sell it? How does that work?

Sincerely,
Heather

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re: How Do I Break Into Picture Book Illustration?

posted 2/19/15

Dear Editor…

How on earth do I become an illustrator?

Sincerely,
Troubled in Texas

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re: Are Footnoted Illustration Notes the New Vogue?

posted 12/3/14

Dear Editor…

I know illustration notes should only be used when absolutely necessary in picture book manuscripts, but I do have a few manuscripts that need them. I’ve recently seen them noted as footnotes rather than italicized text between brackets. What do you think of this?

Sincerely,
Wendy

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re: Any Hope for Non-Artists Submitting ABC/Other Concept Books?

posted 11/3/14

Dear Editor…

Is there any point in submitting a concept book such as ABC, colors, numbers if you are not an illustrator. I have a great idea but I am concerned that editors/agents will think my contribution to the end product was not significant enough. What are your thoughts on this?

Sincerely,
Laurie

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