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The Business of Writing for Children: An Award-Winning Author's Tips on Writing Children's Books and Publishing Them, or How to Write, Publish, and Promote a Book for Kids [Paperback]

Aaron Shepard
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Jan. 20 2000 0938497111 978-0938497110

Writing books for children is both art and business. If you dream of becoming a children's author -- or even if you're well on your way -- this handbook can help you in writing sellable stories, getting them published, and promoting your books.

Topics include common myths about children's writing, children's book categories, elements of successful stories, manuscript format, submission strategies, contract negotiation, the publishing process, career building, and children's writer resources. Also included are specialized subjects such as querying for multiple manuscripts, promoting a first book, and designing a Web page.

Read The Business of Writing for Children to learn the secrets you might spend years discovering for yourself.

Frequently Bought Together

The Business of Writing for Children: An Award-Winning Author's Tips on Writing Children's Books and Publishing Them, or How to Write, Publish, and Promote a Book for Kids + The Writer's Guide to Crafting Stories for Children + The Everything Guide to Writing Children's Books: How to write, publish, and promote books for children of all ages!
Price For All Three: CDN$ 39.06

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Product Description


The Business of Writing for Children is a clear, concise, resourceful, often eye-opening guide that is filled with solid advice to help aspiring writers sell their manuscripts and to help published authors boost sales. I learned a good deal from this handy resource. I am sure anyone who is serious about the business of writing for children will profit from it. -- Robert D. San Souci, children's author

The Business of Writing for Children is a clear, concise guide to the often misunderstood field of children's books. No matter what your level of experience -- from beginner to veteran -- there is much to learn from Aaron Shepard's nuts-and-bolts approach to surviving the bunny-eat-bunny world of writing for children. Read it and learn! -- Larry Dane Brimner, children's author

The Business of Writing for Children is a one-stop shopping center, a complete how-to-do-it guide for the writer who wants a jump-start on looking professional even though he/she may be turning out a first book. Editors will love you if you do it Shepard's way. -- Audrey Baird, Editor, Once Upon A Time

Aaron Shepard has written one of the most comprehensive guides available to anyone wishing to enter the competitive field of children's books. It's all here, from initial idea to successful sale, and then beyond to the essentials of contracts, promotion, and the ABCs of building a successful career. If you're starting out, start out here. -- Stephen Mooser, children's author

BRAVO! I thought it had pretty much all been said, but I was wrong. All the nuts and bolts are here as well as rules that bear repeating, PLUS insights not usually found in how-to books. Clearly and concisely written, this is an invaluable resource for both beginning and more accomplished writers. -- Susan Pearson, Editor-in-Chief, Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Books

Finally, a thorough, concise overview of the business end of writing for the children's market. This book is a wonderful gift to the budding authors of the world. Aaron has combined great talents for writing and storytelling with smart and informed business practices to create a great career. Now he shares what he has learned, to help others do the same. -- Kip Nead, co-owner, Seeds of Change Children's Bookstore

For aspiring writers of picture book fiction and folktales, this is a great introduction to the complicated world of children's book publishing. -- Harold Underdown, Senior Editor, Charlesbridge Publishing, and Webmaster, The Purple Crayon

Here's clearly-written, no-nonsense help for children's writers by a craftsman. Every fledgling author should own this book. -- Stephen Fraser, Executive Editor, Aladdin Paperbacks

Writers attempting to break into the children's book market will thank Aaron Shepard for graciously sharing his own hard-earned knowledge. I am adding this to my list of must-reads for newcomers to the field. -- Margaret Read MacDonald, author and librarian

Written by an experienced picture book author, this guide covers all the basics of writing for children in a realistic, practical manner. The fun -- as well as the work -- of writing, selling, and marketing books for young readers is evident in every step of Shepard's approach. -- Judith O'Malley, Editor, Book Links

About the Author

Aaron Shepard is the author of Master Man, The Sea King's Daughter, The Legend of Lightning Larry, and sixteen other published and forthcoming picture books. His publishers have included Atheneum, Scribners, Clarion, Lothrop, Dial, and HarperCollins, as well as Cricket and Australia's School Magazine. Aaron's work has been honored by the American Library Association, the National Council for the Social Studies, and the American Folklore Society, and he has been a judge for the Golden Kite Awards of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Here are the elements that editors, reviewers, and to some extent readers will look for in your story. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mayra Calvani -- TCM REVIEWS Nov. 20 2005
By A Customer
If you're thinking of writing, selling and promoting a children's book, The Business of Writing for Children is a title you'll definitely want to add to your permanent reference shelf. In it you'll find tips, useful information and resources on how to write children's fiction, learning what editors want to see in a manuscript, how to submit your queries and promote your book. The book's short length and concise, right-to-the-point approach make it an ideal first guide for beginners in the field.
Shepard begins by listing some "Dangerous Myths and Terrible Truths" about the business. Then he offers general guidelines on how to write for children, dealing with topics such as Theme, Plot, Story Structure, Characters, Setting, Style and Tone.
The different kinds of children's books categories can be confusing and hard to distinguish from one another; Shepard describes each in a clear manner.
Everything from formatting and submitting your manuscript, to negotiating a contract, to understanding the publishing process, to building your career, to scripting your story can be found between these pages, and more. A separate section is given to other topics such as Rhythm and Writing and Researching Folk Tales.
Most helpful are the author's sample flyers and queries, especially his ingenious way for sending one query for multiple titles, saving time and postage fees. Shepard also offers clever alternatives to sending queries by using Post-its. At the end of the book there's an Appendix filled with useful resources.
Be aware this book will not teach you how to self publish a children's book, but only how to sell your work to traditional publishers. However, this is a reference work valuable for anybody who wishes to understand the business of writing for children. Highly recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Not step-by-step, but some great ideas Jan. 19 2002
After reading other books on writing books for children, I thought I would see more coverage on the writing process. Not counting the appendix, there are only 94 pages in the paperback edition; this doesn't give a lot of space for the big picture.
The subtitle for the book is "An Award-Winning Author's Tips on How to Write, Sell, and Promote Your Children's Books." The key word here is tips, and it is these tips which make this a helpful book.
One of his tips, writing your story as a script for a children's play, strikes me as simple, yet rewarding. Many children's books require more dialogue than narrative, so making a script requires you to view your work from a new perspective. It is such a simple idea, but I had never thought of doing it.
One of his marketing tips is to use the script you wrote and market it with the book. Schools are more likely to use a book for class if there are more things to do with it. Creating study questions is another idea.
Although this was a quick-read, I would recommend reading this...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Don't Write a Book Without It! March 13 2000
I too write and illustrate children's books and I am anxious to help anyone asking for information about how to get started as others helped me. I carry a file folder of photocopied materials around with me which I share with unpublished writers and illustrators. This book, The Business of Writing for Children, is so comprehensive I plan to replace my file folder with this book. As many an editor has said at many a conference, "today's aspiring authors often haven't done their homework," this book by Aaron Shepard will satisfy that need. And, published authors may sit up and take notice; waiting for your publisher to prepare promotional materials for you and your books can be frustrating, you may want to do it yourself; the how-to is in these pages. Whether you are a novice or professional, The Business of Writing for Children needs to be in your library - DON'T write a book without it!
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Aaron Shepard is an experienced and award-winning author of books for young readers who in The Business Of Writing For Children brings to bear his considerable expertise in providing the aspiring children's book author a wealth of tips on how to write, sell, and promote their books. Shepard addresses common myths about children's writings, children's book categories, elements of successful stories, manuscript format, submission strategies, contract negotiation, the publishing process, career building, and children's writer resources. he also offers invaluable commentary on querying for multiple manuscripts, promoting a first book, and making arrangements for school appearances. The Business Of Writing For Children is a superbly presented, highly recommended, basic introduction for all aspiring and novice writers of books for young readers -- preschool through young adult.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Not like every other book... Jan. 11 2003
By A Customer
Having already purchased many books on the technique of writing for children, I was pleased to find this book contained more. His methods for querying, scripting and marketing are valuable, and clearly explained.
Many of the reviews already placed here have gone into more detail on what is contained in this book, so I will simply summarize...
This is an easy to read and understand book full of valuable information for the aspiring, or previously published, children's writer.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Writing for Children
I borrowed this book from the library and felt I needed my own copy. Also it is highly recommended in my course I'm taking on writing for children. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Katherine Adlam
4.0 out of 5 stars Step by Step
If only all books who purport to "pave the way" to begin writing was written as well as this one, there might be more writers in the world in this particular genre!
Published on May 5 2009 by Roxy
5.0 out of 5 stars This book can help you get published!
I bought this book back in 1993 and have been successful in publishing, due in part by following Aaron Shepard's suggestions. THANK YOU so very much, Aaron! Read more
Published on Nov. 6 2003 by Jan Peck
5.0 out of 5 stars Want to write for kids or adults, this is the Holy Grail
I finally received ï¿The Business of Writing for Childrenï¿ and was amazed at the information he reveals. Read more
Published on Nov. 25 2001 by D. hamilton
4.0 out of 5 stars Getting right down to business
This is a very good book especially in regard to the business of writing for children.
If you want to write picture books, I also recommend "How to Write and Sell... Read more
Published on Sept. 15 2001
4.0 out of 5 stars excellent tips and good reading
For the price that it is, this book is a steal. It gave excellent tips from an experienced children's writer while giving me some confidence because I feel like I won't look like... Read more
Published on June 21 2001 by R. Resnick
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended
Aaron's book is worth the price just for the wealth of inside information found in DANGEROUS MYTHS AND TERRIBLE TRUTHS. And that's just the introduction. Read more
Published on April 30 2000 by Dian Curtis Regan
4.0 out of 5 stars The Business of Writing for Children
A clear, conscise, straight-ahead starting place for a new writer, or a newly published writer.Shepard knows his stuff!
Published on March 13 2000 by Jane Yolen
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