Before I started to dedicate myself to writing children’s stories, I always wondered where people got their ideas. Sure, I would get ideas, but to me it seemed one came only every few years. After I took my children’s writing course, the ideas finally came to me, fast and furious. Here are three ways I found that my ideas appeared:
1. Immerse yourself in children’s literature. Read as many books as you can and read in all genres. Read picture books, emergent readers, middle graders, young adult novels, fiction, non fiction…You will not only find what writing style suits you better, but also find that the ideas start coming to you.
2. Spend some time in a child’s world. And don’t only observe it, live it. When your child tells you to join her in a leaf bath, do it. You’ll be amazed how suddenly an idea comes to you as you lay in the leaves, staring into the sky. Or make fake footprints in the snow. Again, don’t just observe, participate.
3. Use children’s guided activity books to help you out. I find that there aren’t too many guided writing books that focus on adults writing children’s stories. But there are plenty of books that are designed to help children learn to write more creatively. Here is a recent gem that I found called:
This is also a good book for homeschoolers or parents who want to encourage their children to write outside of the classroom. My daughter has already had a lot of fun making the pop up book (a story called “Carrot the Parrot”) and the journal.
What about you? Where do you get your ideas from?