Thursday, March 21, 2019

ReFoReMo Day 15: Editor/Author Emma Walton Hamilton Breaks the Rules



As a picture book author, editor and writing teacher, I spend a lot of time thinking about the “rules” of the craft. Several new picture books suggest that the rules are becoming more flexible. Here are five of my favorites that chart new territory and inspire me to think outside the rule box:



Little Brown (Marla Frazee) – A shelter dog wonders whether being friendless makes him cranky, or 
is the result of his crankiness.

BROKEN RULES: Disagreeable protagonist, existential concept, unresolved ending.







I Will Not Eat You (Adam Lehrhaupt, Scott Magoon) - A dragon considers who is meal-worthy, and 
why.

BROKEN RULES: Passive protagonist; unexpected, quirky take-away





  

   The Stuff of Stars (Mariod Dane Bauer, Ekua Holmes) – A poetic exploration of the Big Bang.

   BROKEN RULES: Philosophical non-fiction; abstract (but magnificent) illustrations 







The Iridescence of Birds (Patricia MacLachlan, Hadley Hooper) – Biography of Henri Matisse.

BROKEN RULES: 2nd person narrative voice; advanced vocabulary





Tie: I Need a New Bum (Dawn McMillan, Ross Kinaird) and Monsters New Undies (Samantha Berger, 
Tad Carpenter) Fun with backsides and underwear.


BROKEN RULES: Risky content, language and illustrations (these books might get banned – but kids 
love them!)


Emma is giving away one Editor in a Box for Picture Books revision kit to one lucky winner. To be eligible for prizes throughout the challenge, you must be registered by March 4, comment on each post, consistently read mentor texts, and enter the Rafflecopter drawing at the conclusion of ReFoReMo. 

Emma Walton Hamilton is a best-selling children’s book author, editor and writing coach. She serves as director of Stony Brook University’s Children’s Lit Fellows certificate program, now in its 7th year, as well as the annual Children’s Lit Conference. A co-founder of Picture Book Summit and The Complete Picture Book Submissions System, Emma also hosts her own writing courses and resources for writers online at emmawaltonhamilton.com.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

ReFoReMo Day 14: Cindy Williams Schrauben Focuses on the Forest


When writing in rhyme, it is easy to allow the verse and wordplay to take center stage and lose sight of the storyline. As they say… you can’t see the forest for the trees. In an attempt to avoid this pitfall, I have studied the following rhyming picture books for their ability to enchant with rhyme while maintaining a clear and concise storyline.


MARY HAD A LITTLE LAB by Sue Fliess and Petros Bouloubasis



ALBIE NEWTON by Josh Funk and Esther Garay












DIVA DELORES AND THE OPERA HOUSE MOUSE by Laura Sassi and Rebecca Gerlings










THE DRAGON AND THE NIBBLESOME KNIGHT by Elli Woolland and Benji Davies










ZOG AND THE FLYING DOCTORS by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler
DORIS THE BOOKASAURUS By Diana Murray and Yuyi Chen












Cindy is offering a picture book critique to one lucky winner. To be eligible for prizes throughout the challenge, you must be registered by March 4, comment on each post, consistently read mentor texts, and enter the Rafflecopter drawing at the conclusion of ReFoReMo.


Cindy Schrauben contributes to our ReFoReMo Facebook Group and blog. As a former educator and magazine editor/writer, Cindy is consumed by a life-long passion for the written word. Her projects range from picture books to young adult novels as well as adult non-fiction. Writing for children provides her with a real excuse for spending so much time in the children's section of the bookstore. Cindy is a member of SCBWI and participates in many online writing communities.