By Kelly Carey (reposted from December 2018)
Often, when a family member, friend, or acquaintance learns that you are a children’s writer they comment back, “I’ve always wanted to be a children’s writer,” or “I’ve written a children’s book too”. As a seasoned member of the KidLit community you will want to be helpful and encouraging while still providing realistic and practical advice and information.
The following blog is a post that you can share with folks you meet who want to become children’s book writers. Share it as a way to kick-start their writing journey and provide them with the first step information every writer needs to move from thinking about being a children’s writer to becoming a children’s writer.
Becoming a Children’s Author
The dream of becoming a children’s author is a wonderful bubble that floats into the heads and hearts of many creative people. The trick is to take that dream and make it a reality.
There are three key first steps that every dreamer needs to take in order to kick start their writing journey and move it from a thinking about phase to a doing phase.
Step One: Write
The first step to becoming a children’s author is to write.
This may seem like common sense, but this is the point where many writing dreams sit stagnant. Aspiring writers may think about a story, and have a desire to be a writer, but often they will not take the time to sit down and put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard.
To become a published writer you have to sit down and write. It can’t be on a whim or as a hobby. It has to be a real endeavor. Until you decide to make writing a priority, everything and anything - kids, family, chores, appointments, friends - can and will derail your efforts and interrupt your progress. Think of writing as a job that requires your undivided time and attention.
To put true intention into your writing ambition, layer measurable goals into your dream:
For help setting your writing goals check out the posts under the Writing Goals section of the 24 Carrot blog archives.
Step 2: Find Your Tribe
Writing can be a very solitary business. You’re not working for a company. There is no boss or co-worker. It is you alone with a laptop or a notebook. BUT you cannot work in a vacuum. You will need a group of fellow writers on your journey for the following reasons:
There are some practical ways to find your writing tribe. For example:
Engage in the community of writers in order to find valuable critique partners and a support system. For more help finding a writing tribe, check out the posts under the Writing Community section of the 24 Carrot blog archives.
Step 3: Read
There is a difference between reading a book as a reader for enjoyment and entertainment and reading a book as writer. Readers will enjoy a book, while writers will study why a book was enjoyable. In order to become a published writer, you need to read like a writer.
There are three primary reasons why writers read in their genre:
For more help becoming a writer who reads, check out the posts under the Read section of the 24 Carrot blog archives.
If you have been thinking about becoming a children’s writer take these first steps.
Write, Find a Tribe, and Read.
Good Luck on your journey!
Join us this summer as we look back at our favorite posts from the archives. Some will be groovy, many will be far-out, and we know you'll dig 'em! If you missed a stellar post from the past, mellow out and catch them during the 24 Carrot Writing RETRO SUMMER!
We're starting off by reposting our popular June Year's Eve celebration blog!
As we hit the halfway mark of 2023, June Year’s Eve reminds you to assess your annual writing goals. Recommit to your 2023 writing plan, and make sure the schedule shifts of summer don’t derail your progress! Enjoy the holiday, but keep on track with your writing goals!
by Kelly Carey
I love this holiday!
Yes, June Year is a holiday!
When it comes to writing and goals setting this is my favorite holiday. Some like January when you tap out lists of goals and resolutions with the enthusiastic optimism of the diapered New Year’s baby. But June is the month when the mature goal setter emerges to take stock, assess, and for those who really want it, decides to persevere.
Remember those sparkly goals you set six months ago? What? You forgot about them! ACK!
Get them out. Oh good, some of you remember your writing goals for the year. But, what’s that? You sort of lost track? You petered out in March and now you are aimlessly drifting through writing projects?
Remain calm – the June Year holiday has come just in time!
Get out those annual goals. How are you doing so far? Hey, look, you hit a few! Hooray – party with a few carrots!
You missed some? No worries. You still have a full six months left to hit those targets. Use the June Year holiday to celebrate all you have accomplished so far in and reset your goals for the second half of the year. Get ready to finish the year strong – 24 Carrot Writing strong!
Happy June Year everyone!
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