For Writers

Writing for children has been my lifelong passion. The road to publication is both exciting and challenging. I have provided a list below of resources that have been helpful to me. I hope you will benefit from them as I have.

❤ Christine

Books on craft I’ve found useful:

Absorb! Be a sponge.  

  • How to Write a Children’s Picture Book Volume I, II & III by Eve Heidi Bine Stock
  • Self Editing for Fiction Writers, Second Edition: How to edit yourself into print by Rennie Browne and Dave King
  • Picture Writing by Anastasia Suen

Mentorship & Workshop Opportunities

Pam Calvert Picture Book University

Writing with Maggie Stiefvater

Anastasia Suen Intensive Picture Book Workshop

Children’s Literature Recommendations:

Studying children’s literature classics is essential, however, aspiring children’s writers should also strive to study titles that have been published in the past two years. This will give you a good feel for what is being accepted and published in the current children’s book market.  Also, try to read at least 30-50 titles in the genre you are interested in writing in.  I’ve listed books below that have inspired me, from classics to contemporary.  Isn’t it fun to read what you love?

Picture Books/Early Readers

  • Frog and Toad are Friends by Arnold Lobel 
  • Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion
  • Corduroy by Don Freeman
  • How do dinosaurs say I love you? by Jane Yolen
  • Olivia by Ian Falconer
  • Knuffle Bunny by Mo Willems
  • Fancy Nancy by Jane O’Conner
  • Calvin Can’t Fly by Jennifer Berne
  • Mostly Monsterly by Tammi Sauer
  • Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons by Eric Litwin and James Dean
  • I Ain’t Gonna Paint No More by Karen Beaumont
  • Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett
  • Over and Under the Snow by Deborah Underwood
  • Press Here by Herve Toullet
  • Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Pena

Chapter Books/Middle Grade 

  • The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
  • Holes by Louis Sachar
  • Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown
  • The Giver by Lois Lowry
  • Palace Beautiful by Sarah Deford Williams

Young Adult 

  • Divergent by Victoria Roth
  • Uglies by Scott Westerfeld and Rodrigo Corral
  • Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
  • Across the Universe by Beth Revis
  • Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

 Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators

SCBWI, affectionately pronounced as “Scoo-bwi” by some, was founded in 1971 and has membership from all over the world. SCBWI offers a wealth of information to children’s writers.  Membership is open to unpublished and published authors. They offer annual conferences and local chapter events.  These events are a great place to connect with other writers and learn more about the craft of writing. I treasure my experiences at these events and have been inspired by all the agents, editors, authors, and aspiring writers I have met along the way.

Children’s Authors that have inspired me!

I met Jon Sciescka at the 2013 Summer SCBWI Conference.
I first met Jon Sciescka at the 2011 SCBWI Summer Conference. He applauded me for writing picture books saying that ‘we need more picture book writers’. I was lucky enough to meet him again at the 2013 SCBWI Summer Conference. I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy of his new book, BATTLE BUNNY!
Meeting Deborah Underwood at the 2012 SCBWI Summer Conference was such a wonderful experience. Her picture book, A BALLOON FOR ISABEL , is one of my all-time favorites.
Meeting Deborah Underwood at the 2012 SCBWI Summer Conference was such a wonderful experience. Her picture book, A BALLOON FOR ISABEL, is one of my all-time favorites.
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Ruta Sepetys is the author of the YA Novel BETWEEN SHADES OF GRAY. YA is not my main area of writing, nonetheless, Ruta inspired me to write the story only I can tell, which I may just do some day … in the form of a YA novel. She also encouraged me to dig deeper in my picture book texts, and my writing is growing immensely as a result.