As an author and critiquer, I focus on feelings, resonance, and the emotional arc of the story. The following mentor texts pack a powerful emotional punch.
I AM THE STORM by Jane Yolen and Heidi E.Y. Stemple/ Illustrated by Kristen and Kevin Howdeshell
“But when the wind and sea calmed, as hurricanes always do, we went back home. It’s okay to be scared.”
PARKER LOOKS UP: AN EXTRAORDINARY MOMENT by Parker Curry and Jessica Curry/ Illustrated by Brittany Jackson
““She is a queen,” Parker whispered, unable to look away, to move, to breathe. In that moment, Parker saw more than just a portrait—she saw a road before her with endless possibilities.”
I AM EVERY GOOD THING by Derrick Barnes/ Illustrated by Gordon C. James
“I’m the BOOM-BAP—
when the bass line thumps and the
kick drum jumps.
I’m the perfect beat, the perfect rhyme,
keeping everything on point and
always on time—”
DEAR EARTH… FROM YOUR FRIENDS IN ROOM 5 by
Erin Dealey/ Illustrated by Luisa Uribe
“Your letter arrived on the wind. A whisper of hope in the night.”
THE REMEMBER BALLOONS by Jessie Oliveros/ Illustrated by Dana Wulfekotte
“Every time I almost reach it, but it always slips away.”
Below you’ll find a collage of additional mentor texts. I included my latest, HOME FOR A WHILE (Magination Press/Illustrated by Natalia Moore). I poured out my therapist's heart into Calvin’s story, and hope it gives readers the opportunity to “feel all the feels.”
Reach deep inside. Make your readers cry, gasp, and laugh. Make your readers feel!
Lauren is giving away 2 different prizes to two lucky winners: 1) A 45-minute Zoom or phone consultation to discuss ideas, and assess viability, marketability, and the heart of your manuscript. 2) A swag package. To be eligible for prizes throughout the challenge, you must be registered by March 1, comment on each post, consistently read mentor texts, and enter the Rafflecopter drawing at the conclusion of ReFoReMo.
Lauren Kerstein is an author and psychotherapist. She is a Jersey girl at heart who currently lives in Colorado with her husband, their two dragons...er, daughters, and their rescue dog. Lauren is the author of the Rosie the Dragon and Charlie picture book series (Illustrated by Nate Wragg/Two Lions). Her latest picture book, HOME FOR A WHILE (Illustrated by Natalia Moore/Magination Press) moved into shelves February 2, 2021. Lauren also writes books in her field. Lauren is one of the founders of #ReVISIONweek, a judge with Rate Your Story, runs a critique business, and is a long-time member of 12x12 and SCBWI. Her writing goals are simple. Read voraciously. Embrace feedback. Grow each day. Work hard. Be passionate. Write courageously. Touch children’s hearts. You can visit her at www.LaurenKerstein.net, and follow her on Twitter and Instagram (@LaurenKerstein) and FB (https://www.facebook.com/laurenkersteinauthor).