What You Need to Know About Query Letters

If you’ve finished a project and you are about to query an agent or editor, here’s a great article linked from Harold Underdown’s blog. If you don’t know about him and you write for children, keep his site handy. It’s a terrific resource.

Before you send, a checklist:

  • Did you research your recipient?
  • Did you spell their name right?
  • Are you sending a manuscript they said they didn’t want?
  • Did you include your social media information? (If you have it.)
  • Did you include your contact information?
  • Is your letter brief and to the point?
  • Does the tone of your letter catch the spirit of your story?
  • Did you include the character and the stakes? (If you don’t know what stakes are, look it up.)
  • Did you include only relevant biographical information?
  • Is your letter less than a page long?

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Funny Picture Books Need Golden Hearts

I love the Children’s Book Academy. I just finished a month-long workshop on writing picture books and learned so much. Some manuscripts I need to revise one more time are humorous and that is important, because everyone loves funny stories (especially me,) but the best humorous tales offer a deeper layer, like the finish on a fine wine.

Click on this link to read what it means to create a picture book with both humor and heart.

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How to Write a Chapter Book from an Expert

Interested in writing for children? Don’t miss this great post on literary agent Jill Corcoran’s blog. While you’re there, check out other useful information for writers. I have heard her speak at conferences. Writers who have her as an agent are very lucky. She is warm, honest, and experienced.

#WritingTips Raffle Editor Jen Arena’s Expert Advice on Writing Chapter Books Win a Copy of Jen’s 100 SNOWMEN.

From the LitReactor Blog, Here’s a Great Post for Writers

If you want to get published, here’s a good article to read.

Questions Every Writer Should Be Asking But Isn’t | LitReactor.

Writing Dialogue

Here, on Kristen Lamb’s amazing blog for writers, is part three in a series on improving your dialogue skills. Check it out!

Les Edgerton & Two Tips to Take Your Dialogue to a WHOLE New Level–Part 3 | Kristen Lamb’s Blog.

Insights on Revision from Successful Authors

If you are revising a book, don’t miss this series of author interviews.

Revision Week: Matthew J. Kirby | DearEditor.com.

Children’s Book Illustration Insight from Jerry Pinkney

From Tanja Bauerle, children’s book illustrator a report on a session by Jerry Pinkney at the Tucson Festival of Books. Some great hints and inspiration.

Tucson Festival of Books Recap – Jerry Pinkney – Tanja Bauerle | Tanja Bauerle.

What’s in a Name? Everything!

The heart of a great story is a great character. A rose may be a rose may be a rose, but a character’s name is very important. Consider how much Harry’s name tells us about young Potter. Here’s a handy guide for naming characters.

How to Name Your Characters.

Don’t Use Discussion Forums to Pitch Your New Book

I do not self-publish, but this article about writers in discussion forums is  for everyone. Thanks for drawing it to my attention, Julie Hedlund.

Forum Etiquette: Selling Your Book in Discussion Forums? Don’t!.