National Picture Book Writing Week Results

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I am proud of myself. I wrote 7 drafts in the 7 days of the NaPiBoWriWee challenge.

1. On day 1, I wrote a draft about a boy who discovers what happens when he doesn’t take care of the toys he has and the garbage he produces. I had thought about this idea a long time ago, but had never written it out. I discovered that it would make a better chapter book. I hope to write it out soon, but if not, then I can finish it at the chapter book challenge.

2. On day 2, I wrote a draft based on a true story, when my daughter threw her hat out of a train a couple of years ago. I think it would make a great picture book, and I will continue working on it.

3. This day I wrote all about the monsters that I had created for my daughter several years ago. I realized that it would make a better humorous article for parents. Now I just need to figure out where I could submit it. Any ideas?

4. I asked my daughter’s school librarian what sort of picture book gap that she saw. One thing that she mentioned was character development. This is a hard topic. I did make an attempt today though. I wrote up a story about a little boy who wastes his time complaining about having to do things rather than actually doing them. This is a subject a lot of parents can relate to, and I have never seen the issue addressed.

5. I wrote a draft about a story I had created for my daughter several years ago. She gave me several characters, and I made up the story based on them. In this case the main characters are a cat and a witch. It could be a picture book, but the story is a bit weak. Maybe it would be better as a magazine article.

6. This draft turned out to be shorter than a picture book. It was more like a board book. Or maybe inbetween.  The main character was bicultural/biracial. I blogged about the lack of bicultural characters in books in this blog. I would like to see more of them.

I also did a dummy book exercise today, as suggested by the organizer of the challenge. This was very helpful. I learned that I am too wordy. I used my jar story. I am still trying to decide whether or not it would make a better picture book or a better magazine story. It could become a series. But it would not be so good as a stand alone picture book, because of the cliffhanger.

7. This was the last day, and I finally started the picture book that I had thinking about since November, when I took my children’s writing course. I knew it would involve a lot of research, so I put it off. But I really enjoyed the research I did. I only wrote about 300 words, but at least I know the direction I am going now.

The story is about dinosaurs. I know, you’re thinking that the subject has been overdone. But I have a new angle on it. The trouble with dinosaur books is that we don’t really know what happened, and so the theories are all controversial, which makes writing a book about them all the more interesting.

So it was a very productive 7 days for me. Now I have 7 stories that I can work on!

What are you working on these days?

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