Monday, April 30, 2012

Picture Book Creation Part 2

Our best selling book continues to be Counting Train Cars.  We think it is because it rhymes and helps kids with numbers.  I am sure the trains don't hurt either.  Kids seem to love trains.

So for our next book we are going to go back to rhyming, our fist love :)  We are amateur book writers and are not really sure if there is a right way to do this, but we simply start with a premise and then write the lines.

For instance one of the sections in our upcoming Summer book (not even a working title yet) is about having a picnic.  We sit and talk about what you do at a picnic.  You grill, you eat, friends come, they bring covered dishes or desserts, etc.  Then we come up with the first line.  We tend to write in two or four line stanzas. No reason, it just seems to be the easiest for children to understand.

So the first line is.

A picnic in the park will taste great.

Then we start throwing out rhyming words for great.  Hate, state, mate, grate, plate.  That's it, plate!

Hot dogs and burgers to fill our plate.

That continues until we think we have caught the feel for what we are trying to do with the two or four lines.  Here is how this one has ended up so far (still editing).

A picnic in the park will taste great.
Hot dogs and burgers to fill our plate.
The neighbors will bring their favorite dishes.
Baked beans, chicken, brownies, and knishes.

Yes, knishes. Pronounced Kuh-Nishes if you have never come across them. They are basically giant dumplings popular in NYC and other cities up east. We think it is a fun word and something for kids to learn about. Could backfire if no one knows what they are, but Google is always close by if needed.

Here is one of the illustrations to go with this part. We are illustrating each line so it will be quite a few drawings.


So, let us know what you think. Do you write picture books? How does this differ from your process? If you have kids, writing a picture book can be a great game. Let us know how it goes with your crew.


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