Writing Tips from Children’s Author Diane Kredensor


Welcome to day four of Diane Kredensor’s 6-day NWFCC April Author Showcase tour and immerse yourself in the writing fun.

Well, my best advice would be to immerse yourself in children’s books. Spend time at your local library or bookstore and read the classics, the new releases, and the award winners. Get a sense of what works and why. Get inspired! Also look for books, seminars, and classes on writing for children’s books. There are plenty of good ones out there, ask around and make sure if you sign up for something it’s reputable. It’s also important to understand what’s needed when submitting a manuscript, so whether that’s through an agent or by researching publishers yourself, I highly recommend that you know what editors are looking for before sending anything out.

But most important—just start writing as much as possible! Don’t edit yourself right away. Just get it out, let it flow. I always have to remind myself that creative writing is not about the end result, it’s the journey. That reminder helps me from trying to write a “perfect” story right out of the gate. I also have to remind myself to “show” not “tell.”

And learn to embrace failure! That’s probably one of the most important lessons I’ve gotten in life. It’s okay to put something out there and have agents, publishers, or whoever, turn you down. Look at the feedback they give you and see if there’s anything useful to apply to your next idea. But don’t make it mean you shouldn’t be writing! Here’s one of my favorite quotes about failure that I agree with 100%, and I remind myself of often:

It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not lived at all. In which case, you fail by default.

                                               —JK Rowling

And finally, have fun! If you’re not having fun, what’s the point?

Follow Day 5 of Ms. Kredensor’s tour tomorrow at www.rothsinspiringbooksandproducts.wordpress.com.


8 responses to this post.

  1. Every word of this is so true and is really an axiom by which to write. Failure and having fun–both ends of the spectrum, and both so important in a writer’s life. Great post!


  2. Great tips. Reading what’s out there is very important. I rarely edit as I go along. My writing goes much faster if I plug away and then edit after the first draft is done.

    Best of luck.



  3. Posted by thedarkphantom on April 23, 2011 at 6:40 pm

    Thanks for the great tips.


  4. This is a terrific article. I think absorbing it – really understanding it – will help a lot of authors avoid frustration and rejection. Case in point, a girlfriend had a dream that turned into a wonderful idea for a children’s book some years ago. In fact she had wonderful ideas for three books. She wrote them out and started submitting the books to every publisher she could find. And every one rejected her work. This is not to say an inspiration in the form of a dream can’t manifest itself into a delightful book. It can, and it surely does. But in her haste to become a published author, she didn’t learn the mechanics of writing and storytelling. It’s far more complex than readers know and the longer your book, the more challenging fiction writing is. It was with bittersweet honor, that I autographed my first children’s book and presented it to her. It had to be difficult to take. I wish she had taken some advice and we could have shared the joy of seeing our work published – together. Great post. Thanks for listening to my rant!



  5. Thanks, everyone. And thanks to Nicole for hosting. It’s wonderful to see this dialogue! My best,


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