Children’s picture books are always a joy to write because they allow you to write great content for kids. This is especially true for writers who love to draw their own illustrations.
However, if you are going to write your own children’s picture book, you should have a set strategy. While it may seem easy at first, you’ll be surprised at how much work it takes to write a full-fledged children’s picture book. Here are some key tips to get you started.
1. Choose a great topic
If you want to make your children’s book a success, you should choose a great topic to write about. The topic should be both entertaining and educational at the same time. You are writing for kids, so you should not make your topic too complex. Remember that you are writing for minors, so if the topics are too serious, they may deem it too boring and lose interest entirely.
2. Come up with a great main character
You should make sure that your main character is as memorable as possible. Remember that your main character is the focal point of your story. Take the time to craft a main character that will capture your reader’s attention, and also act as a positive role model for them as well. The main character should be relatable, because he or she should be considered a friend by your young readers. You should also come up with a cute and memorable design for your character.
3. Choose an age range
Before you start writing your children’s picture book, it is important that you choose the age range that you will be writing for. Remember that children’s books are divided according to their reading ability. If you don’t take the age range into consideration, you may have a hard time marketing your book. You should know that there are specifics when it comes to choosing an age range for your children’s book.
To simplify things, you should know that there are four types of children’s books according to age range. They are the following.
- Picture Books- For kids age 0-8 years old.
- Early reader books- For kids age 5 to 7 years old.
- Chapter books-For kids 7 to 10 years old.
- Middle Grade fiction- For kids 8 to 12 years old.
For example, if you are going to write a picture book that focuses more on the images than the writing, you could market it to the newborn to 8-year-old category. However, if your children’s picture book has more complex characters, topics, and wordplay, then you should market it to the 7 to 10-year-old range.
Overall, you must choose an age range carefully and write a picture book that will cater to them effectively. This will ensure your book marketing is efficient too.
4. Remember that you are writing for kids
No matter what age range you are writing for, it is still important to remember that you are writing for kids. This means that you should take your subject matter and the concepts you write about into consideration. You should also avoid using any type of profanity or tackling social issues that are too dark and disturbing.
5. Your Illustrations must be as unique as possible
If you want your children’s picture book to truly stand out, it is important that your illustrations are as unique as possible. Remember that you are writing for kids, so the illustrations should be well-drawn and vibrant.
If you are the one who draws your illustrations, you should make sure your work is uniform in style and color palette. This will make your illustrations more aesthetically pleasing. It is also a good idea to match your illustrations with your overall story. This will help your readers become more immersed in your picture book.
On the other hand, if you choose to have an illustrator do the illustrations for your picture book, you should choose wisely. You should make sure the artist actually knows what you want to portray and effectively delivers your message through their art.
6. Have your work reviewed
Before you have your work published, you should have your manuscript reviewed. Aside from writing for kids, you will also want your work to sell well. The best way to do this, is to have a group of kids that are within you book’s age range. Have them take a look through your work and ask for their honest review of your book. By doing so, you will know what parts of your picture manuscript to keep, and which ones to take out.
7. Choose a publishing option
After finishing the manuscript for your children’s picture book, it is now time to choose a publishing option. The most common publishing option is the traditional route. This entails you to send in your manuscript to established publishing houses.
This is an efficient method because the publishing house will do the majority of the work for you. The publishing house will also pay for the whole process. However, you should know that most publishing houses are very particular about their choice of authors. So there is no guarantee that your children’s picture book will be published right away.
If you don’t want to wait for a publishing deal, you could try self-publishing. By taking this route, you won’t really need to wait for a publishing deal. However, you should remember that you will be doing most of the work, and you’ll have to pay for the whole process. Don’t worry, though; there are still some great self-publishing companies that could help you with the self-publishing process.
The two publishing options have their advantages and disadvantages, and it is up to you to decide which option is best for you.
If you are planning on writing a children’s picture book of your own, you should know where to start. With these tips, you’ll be able to write a great children’s picture book.