Although the 2019 Reading for Research challenge has ended, reading for research continues. In this post, participants shared what they’ve discovered and or learned during our March challenge.
(Photo courtesy of Cheryl Cook Johnson)
I have two notebooks I use for PB studies. I like how I do notes for fiction ~ character, problem, inciting event/escalation, resolution, and book concept. …any suggestions [for NF] would be greatly appreciated. – Cheryl Cook Johnson
For a nonfiction PB, I've been keeping a log of other NF PBs with relevant details such as word count, reading level, if quotes were used or not (imagined or real), sidebars, back matter and other (if any) techniques used. Also looking at and logging first lines and last lines in mentor texts to help educate and inspire. - Kate Harold
I used to just type out my mentor texts but now I'm analyzing them more in regards to theme & language used, etc. I mainly type up mentor texts of books I fall in love with. - Nicole Salter Braun
I would say how much I've identified my oldest son in the boy [character] in NANA UPSTAIRS, NANA DOWNSTAIRS I’ve really enjoyed reading the bios as well. I’ve enjoyed the style and structure of them all. I never would have thought to write a bio, but now I’m reconsidering. They were informational and fun. - Ashley Congdon
Writing Down first and last lines and learning lots! - Susan Karunama Twiggs
“I don't think I would write a story without some sort of resolution…or at least an implied resolution.” Laura Jenkins (after reading and discussing “Little Brown” with her son)
I learned that I have very specific taste when it comes to what I enjoy in a picture book. …reading so many varied mentor texts helped me define the types of picture books I enjoy reading AND writing. - Susie Sawyer
I take notes and save those articles that speak to me. I'm working on a story about friendship. IVER AND ELLSWORTH helped me get beyond the words to feel the emotion. The structure of the story guided me as I figured out the pagination of my manuscript. – Charlotte Dixon
I'm in a long-standing critique group [and] look out for mentor texts for my CPs that fit what they may be working on. Sometimes we actually read mentor texts aloud via Google chats in our online critique group. – Kathy Halsey
The many benefits of participating in the annual Reading for Research challenge include reading current titles, finding mentor texts that help us with a work in progress, inspiring us to write in a different format or structure, discovering comparative titles, and learning more about our personal interests. Although these benefits differ for every participant, everyone takes the challenge for the same reason, to grow as writers. I did. I hope you did too.