- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 031220048X
- ISBN-13: 978-0312200480
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 0.7 x 21.6 cm
- Shipping Weight: 191 g
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #212,876 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Way to Write for Children: An Introduction to the Craft of Writing Children's Literature Paperback – Jan 1 1999
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"Hopeful authors exploring 'the way to write for children' could ask for no finer guide than Joan Aiken."--Lloyd Alexander, Newbery Award winner "Joan Aiken has a very clear and unique voice which she brings to the Matter of Children's Books. Any writer who wants to learn the business--of writing--can learn much here."--Jane Yolen, Caldecott Medal and Skylark winner ""The Way to Write for Children" is unquestionably bound to become the definitive practical guide for anyone wanting to enter a genre that looks so easy and turns out to be such a mine field for the unwary. But what I cherish in the book is Joan Aiken's passion . . . Whether or not you hope to write for children, this is a book for the permanent shelf of every thoughtful writer."--Peter S. Beagle, author of "The Last Unicorn "and "The Innkeeper's Song " --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Joan Aiken is the award-winning author of over a hundred books for children and adults, including "The Wolves of Willoughby Chase," "The Whispering Mountain," "The Shadow Guests," and "A Necklace of Raindrops and Other Stories." She lives in Sussex, England. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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On the very first page of the text, Joan Aiken bluntly informs readers that "there is no _one_ way in which to write for children." In another chapter, she explains the futility of dividing child readers into age groups and trying to target a single age. Throughout the book, she gives examples of what she considers poor children's literature--and not without good reason.
Aiken is not a writing teacher who says, "Do this and this and this, but not that." She is more like a mentor whose gut instinct about these matters is so finely developed that she can tell what will work and what will not, even though she may not be able to explain why. Yet she does try! Those who like their writing manuals well organized into clean-cut sections and subsections will not appreciate her attempts, but those who understand that she is truly sincere may dig deeper and find unexpected treasure.
You'll enjoy this book more if you have read as much children's literature as Aiken has and are familiar with the authors and titles that she liberally "name drops" throughout the text. I bought my copy three years ago and understood about 10% of it. Then I started studying some of the books she used as examples: "Daddy-Long-Legs", "Poems of Childhood", "The Chronicles of Narnia", "The Hobbit", "I Am the Cheese", etc. With that, her words took on new life for me.
I can compare reading "The Way to Write for Children" to listening to a wise and remarkable friend speak--but not lecture--about children's literature. It is definitely not writing school, but the education I receive is superior.
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