#PiBoIdM9 Day 22-24

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PiBoIdMo Day 22-24

We are in the final stretch now! I’m getting close to meet the 30 ideas goal  Tara Lazar has set for us. Keep visiting her blog for those inspirational posts!

Here’s what I’ve done over the last three days…

DAY 22
Anna Staniszewski encourages us to take a look at ourselves and embrace our silliness.
*Being different is my super power!*

DAY 23
Katy Duffield encourages to never give up and write your passion.
*I have Peter Pan Syndrome and refuse to grow up! #PBsRule *

DAY 24
Jesse Klausmeier gives us an example on how to use note cards to inspire ideas.
*How many possibilities can there be?*

How am I doing?
I’ve added _5_ more idea over the last three days. Giving me a total of _24_. Again, this is not a sprint. This is a 30 day marathon. I can see the finish line! Meet you there.

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
How are you doing?
Only a few days left. Are your ideas like bunnies and multiplying?

Until next time,

Happy Writing!
~t

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#PiBoIdMo Day 10-12

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PiBoIdMo Day 10-12

Sorry fornthe delayed post. Ive been busy and then my allergies decided to attack. Blah! Ill bee catching up though.

We are almost done with week two! Are you finding your groove yet? I’ve been checking in over onTara Lazar‘s blog leaving comments with each post. Have you?

Here’s what I’ve done over the last three days…

DAY 10
Janna Matthies encourages us to put up our dukes and take on tough topics.
*even in the darkest of times we can find a light*

DAY 11
Joe McGee encourages us to take a trip. No, not a vacation. A trip back to our childhood.
*Got my bags packed and passport ready!*

DAY 12:
Denise Fleming talked about saving ever idea and going through them from time to time.
*Even the stinker ideas can come out smelling sweet*

How am I doing?
I’ve added __ more idea over the last three days. Giving me a total of _9_. Again, this is not a sprint. This is a 30 day marathon. Keep on going! I’ll see you at the finish line.

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
How are you doing?
Are you finding inspiration outside of the posts?

Until next time,

Happy Writing!
~t

* Don’t miss one post! Email sign ups are over here —>
* Did you enjoy this post? Feel free to LIKE, SHARE, and COMMENT ON THIS POST.
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* Sign up for my N E W S L E T T E R ! I will be sharing writing challenges and other tidbits related to the kidlit industry. Click ~HERE~ to be directed to my Newsletter sign up page.

#PiBoIdMo Day 7-9

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PiBoIdMo Day 7-9

We are into week two! How are you doing? I’ve been checking in over onTara Lazar‘s blog leaving comments with each post.

Here’s what I’ve done over the last three days…

DAY 7
Jessica Bagley gives us ways to help find our muse. She also talks about finding the purity of the story to connect with readers.
“that honesty came from a very pure place and it resonates with readers”

DAY 8
Susan Berger gets us prepared to write and encourages us to check in our editor when we sit down to write.
Best. Advice. Ever! —> “blather it out, and edit it later”

DAY 9:
Editor, Meredith Mundy encourages writers to use our words to inspire. Not only our readers what to imagine, but illustrators on what to draw.
*Allow room for illustrators to do their job*

How am I doing?
I’ve added _4_ more ideas over the last three days. Giving me a total of _9_. Again, this is not a sprint. This is a 30 day marathon. Keep on going! I’ll see you at the finish line.

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Are you enjoying the posts?
How are your ideas coming along?
Any good ones?

Until next time,

Happy Writing!
~t

* Don’t miss one post! Email sign ups are over here —>
* Did you enjoy this post? Feel free to LIKE, SHARE, and COMMENT ON THIS POST.
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* Sign up for my N E W S L E T T E R ! I will be sharing writing challenges and other tidbits related to the kidlit industry. Click ~HERE~ to be directed to my Newsletter sign up page.

#PiBoIdMo Day 4-6

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PiBoIdMo Day 4-6

Tara Lazar is keeping me going with ideas. Yay!

Here’s what I’ve done over the last three days…

DAY 4:
Marcie Wessels let’s us know that it’s okay to be stuck and to try not to stress out about it. Ideas will come. *Letting your mind go can sometimes lead to great ideas. Who doesn’t like playtime?*

DAY 5:
David Michael Slater gives a mini-workshop on plotting and how he’s come up with a few of his own ideas. *And you thought Bad Lip Reading was a bad thing.*

DAY 6:
Tammi Sauer wants us to dig deep and find out what makes out characters tick. There’s a great list of questions to ask our characters too. *Really get to knownyou.character & they will be believable.*

How am I doing?
I’ve added _1_ more idea over the last three days. Giving me a total of _5_. Again, this is not a sprint. This is a 30 day marathon. Keep on going! I’ll see you at the finish line.

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
How many ideas have you gotten so far?
How are your ideas coming along?
Any good ones?

Until next time,

Happy Writing!
~t

* Don’t miss one post! Email sign ups are over here —>
* Did you enjoy this post? Feel free to LIKE, SHARE, and COMMENT ON THIS POST.
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* Sign up for my N E W S L E T T E R ! I will be sharing writing challenges and other tidbits related to the kidlit industry. Click ~HERE~ to be directed to my Newsletter sign up page.

#PiBoIdMo Day 1-3

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PiBoIdMo Day 1-3

And we are off!
Picture Book writers have gathered together under Tara Lazar’s guidance and encouraged to come up with 30 ideas in 30 days. Can we do it? We sure can try.
I always look forward to this challenge. It helps build a bank of ideas I can bounce off on during the year when I feel I’m in a rut. *Remember my Ideas Jar video? This is where a lot of my ideas come from.*

Last year i decided to check in every three days. You know, to keep myslelf accountable and maybe gove some of you inspiration too. This is my 6th year with PiBoIdMo. While I haven’t “won” every year, I think anytime I put more ideas in stock I’m a winner.

Let’s see what we’ve done so far.

DAY 1:
Joan Holub gets us to start fresh. To look around and find inspiration. Also not to be scared to take one or more ideas and combine them. *Layers are our friend.*

DAY 2:
Josh Funk gets us out of the bad idea funk (sorry, Josh) by embracing the bad ones and make them work to.our benefit. *Allow a crazy, bad, horrible, no good idea to run amuck.*

DAY 3:
Grace Lin reassures us that when a picture book idea doesn’t work, it doesn’t means it’s a total loss. You.can morph it into another piece in another form. *Don’t throw away those failed attempts, peeps. There’s gold in them there hills! Get to digging.*

How am I doing?
In the first three days I have 4 ideas. Not a bad start at all. I know I’ll have lulls over the next 27 day. But I remind myself this is not a sprint. This is a 30 day marathon. There’s still a ways to go before we finish. I’ll see you at the finish line folks.

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Are you participating in PiBoIdMo?
How are your ideas coming along?

Until next time,

Happy Writing!
~t

* Don’t miss one post! Email sign ups are over here —>
* Did you enjoy this post? Feel free to LIKE, SHARE, and COMMENT ON THIS POST.
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* Sign up for my N E W S L E T T E R ! I will be sharing writing challenges and other tidbits related to the kidlit industry. Click ~HERE~ to be directed to my Newsletter sign up page.

#SummerSparks Day 13 – Do the Twist

Summer Sparks Day 13Do the Twist
by Tracey M. Cox

tire-track-road-mdBeing in a rut can be hard. You try to move forward, but your wheels keep on spinning. You get an occasional jerk, which builds a false hope. Only to settle back in and find yourself going no where.

So what to do? Why not put things in reverse and see if backing up can get you out of there and on your way again?

Sometimes seeing what has been done and out there can give us inspiration to move forward with a new idea. Don’t believe me? Lets take a look at two books that were twisted around for a different perspective:

 

The Three Little Pigs    twitsted into… The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs

The Three PigsWhy would a writer do this? Well both sides deserve to be heard, right? The True Story of the 3 PigsAfter all, thosepiggieswere well portrayed in the original version, AND there is always two sides to a story. The True Story shows us from the wolf’s perspective and may, just maybe, he isn’t so big and bad after all.

 Little Red Riding Hood   twisted into… Ninja Red Riding HoodNinja Red

Little Red Riding HoodWhy would a writer do this? What if Red decided to NOT to be a victim? She could take matters in her own hands and make sure she knew how to defend herself and Granny. This is an empowering message to the reader, regardless of gender.

Now these “WHAT IFs” suggestions are mine. I don’t know what each author was thinking, but I bet they did think…

“WHAT IF?”

 

SPARK:

Read an old favorite story of yours. Then give it a twist! WHAT IF the villain was misunderstood? WHAT IF something crucial didn’t happen? WHAT IF the mc is not what they appear to be?

About Tracey:

Tracey2

Tracey M. Cox has been writing professionally since 2000. She is traditionally published with six picture books out. This Summer, her 7th picture book, The Children at the Playground, will be published by Xist Publishing.
Tracey is the host of Summer Sparks author, platform building consultant, and offers a critique service. Read more about her at www.traceymcox.com.

LINKS:
Website
Facebook
Twitter
Blog
PB Reviews

#GIVEAWAY 2# <—  Yes, #2!

Tracey will be giving away a one hour platform consult at the end of the challenge. COMMENT ON THIS POST to qualify for any give away. *you will need to comment on every give away post*.
TWEET – about this giveaway.
FACEBOOK – post about this giveaway too!!!

Click  —>  a Rafflecopter giveaway   <— to enter giveaway!

:::LEAVE A COMMENT:::
Let me know, are you participating in this years #SummerSparks writing challenge?
What story did you twist?
What other WHAT IF scenarios could spark a story?

* Don’t miss one post! Email sign-ups are over here —>
* Did you enjoy this post? Feel free to LIKE, SHARE, and COMMENT ON THIS POST.
Easy, peasy buttons found  below.
* Sign up for my  N E W S L E T T E R ! I will be sharing writing challenges and other
tidbits related to the kidlit industry. Click  ~HERE~  to be directed to my
Newsletter sign up page.
Shaping Up The Year book       RibbertsWayHome8x300[1]       LGHL-small       justthethingtobe8x300       ADT-8x150       Arachnabet

2015 Summer Sparks post:

  1. Family Celebration by Tracey M. Cox
  2. Back Where I Come From by Tracey M. Cox
  3. The Benefits of Playdough: Molding your PB Idea Into A Story by Donna L. Martin
  4. Go Jump In a Lake by Tracey M. Cox
  5. Take a Vacay! by Tracey M. Cox
  6. How to Rhyme Right in a Picture Book Manuscript by Nancy Raines Day
  7. Don’t You Know that You Are a Shooting Star? by Tracey M. Cox
  8. Sun Burst by Tracey M. Cox
  9. Writing Tips from the Big Bad Writer by Pat Miller
  10. Get Out! by Tracey M. Cox
  11. Pieces by Tracey M. Cox
  12. Make Your Non-Fiction Leap Off the Page! by Jennifer Swanson
  13. Do the Twist by Tracey M. Cox
  14. Celebrate! by Tracey M. Cox

#SummerSparks Day 12 – Make Your Non-Fiction Leap Off the Page! by Jennifer Swanson

Summer Sparks Day 12Make Your Nonfiction Leap Off the Page!
by: Jennifer Swanson

Nonfiction manuscripts are a hot commodity these days. Between Common Core and the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), narrative nonfiction and STEM writing is in high demand. But how do you make your nonfiction piece exciting enough to grab an agent or editor’s attention? Make it leap-off-the- page exciting!

Try these steps to get things going.

1. Pick a topic you want to learn about

Ever wonder how satellites work? Investigate the NASA website for more information. Wonder how the Olympic Committee picks the site of the next Olympics? Do some research and find out. Something that peaks your curiosity is exciting and will motivate you to do research to find out more.

  • Checkthrough publisher catalogs to see what’s new and what’s coming out
  • Look at Amazon and Barnes and Noble, and even the Library of Congress to check out new releases
  • Look for holes in publisher lists and target your submission to these holes.

2. Pick a unique angle

Discovering just the right angle can make your nonfiction writing come alive. Say your topic is the desert. What can you say about a desert? It’s hot. It has cactus. The animals sleep at night. Blah, blah.

Not so fast! Did you know that Antarctica is a desert? Well, do some research and find out. Taking a different approach to a topic can grab your reader’s attention and get them to keep reading.

  • Checkout series that publishers are doing and see if you can come up with one of your own
  • Or maybe you have a book idea that will fit one of their existing series.

3. Use active words

Short, active words paint vivid pictures in a reader’s mind are a great way to capture attention. Use words with energy to describe what is happening.

Here’s an example:

Rain is a form of precipitation. It is made when water in the atmosphere comes together in the form of a cloud. When the cloud gets big enough, it rains.  

Is that last piece exciting? Not really. Let’s try re-writing this:

Ever wonder how those fat, fluffy clouds turn into stormy rain clouds? Here’s how. High in the atmosphere, thousands of tiny water droplets condense and stick together to make a cloud. As other water droplets join in, the cloud grows and grows. Eventually, the cloud becomes very heavy–too heavy. It can’t hold all the water any more. Whoosh! The cloud bursts open thousands of water droplets race to the ground as rain. 

Which piece is more fun to read?

4. Have fun with it

Writing is fun! No matter what you write about, challenge yourself to make it exciting. Make your readers feel like they are actually tramping across the cold, barren, snowy Antarctic. Have them feel the icy wind as it slices across their cheeks and worms its way into their gloves. Let them experience the blinding sun as it reflects off the sharp, clear snow crystals. Putting them in the place they are reading about will make the story so interesting, they won’t even realize that they are learning.

  • Add details that include the 5 senses so the readers are drawn into your story
  • Make a list of words that are specific to your topic and sprinkle them throughout. For example, if your book has to do with boats, include lots of nautical language, “Ahoy matey”, “port”, “starboard”, amidships, etc. It spices up your language and also teaches your reader a bit in the process.
  • Explain everything thoroughly. The best way is to compare something to what a child may already know. For example, don’t say that something is 200 yards long, say it’s “as long as two football fields”. If you can put the image in their head, you will go a long way to helping them to understand it immediately.

SPARK  Take a paragraph or two from nonfiction textbook. Using these four steps, try to re-write the information. Use exciting, active words and paint vivid images for your reader. Does your piece sound better? Great! You are making non-fiction fun!

ABOUT JENNIFER:

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Jennifer Swanson dreams of one day running away to the Museum of Science and Industry-  then maybe she could look at all the exhibits and try out all the gadgets without competing for them with her kids. An author of twenty nonfiction science books for grades 3-6, Jennifer’s goal is to show kids that Science Rocks! She lives in sunny Florida with her husband, three kids and two dogs. When not writing she’s on the hunt for fun science facts. Learn more about Jennifer and her books at www.JenniferSwansonBooks.com.

LINKS:
Website

 

:::LEAVE A COMMENT:::
Let me know, are you participating in this years #SummerSparks writing challenge?
What types of non-fiction are you exploring today?

 

* Don’t miss one post! Email sign-ups are over here —>
* Did you enjoy this post? Feel free to LIKE, SHARE, and COMMENT ON THIS POST.
Easy, peasy buttons found  below.
* Sign up for my  N E W S L E T T E R ! I will be sharing writing challenges and other
tidbits related to the kidlit industry. Click  ~HERE~  to be directed to my
Newsletter sign up page.
Shaping Up The Year book       RibbertsWayHome8x300[1]       LGHL-small       justthethingtobe8x300       ADT-8x150       Arachnabet

2015 Summer Sparks post:

  1. Family Celebration by Tracey M. Cox
  2. Back Where I Come From by Tracey M. Cox
  3. The Benefits of Playdough: Molding your PB Idea Into A Story by Donna L. Martin
  4. Go Jump In a Lake by Tracey M. Cox
  5. Take a Vacay! by Tracey M. Cox
  6. How to Rhyme Right in a Picture Book Manuscript by Nancy Raines Day
  7. Don’t You Know that You Are a Shooting Star? by Tracey M. Cox
  8. Sun Burst by Tracey M. Cox
  9. Writing Tips from the Big Bad Writer by Pat Miller
  10. Get Out! by Tracey M. Cox
  11. Pieces by Tracey M. Cox
  12. Make Your Non-Fiction Leap Off the Page! by Jennifer Swanson
  13. Do the Twist by Tracey M. Cox
  14. Celebrate! by Tracey M. Cox