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Writing for Children: How to Write a Children's Book, Writing for Magazines, Getting Paid for Writing, Getting Published

Do you want to learn how to write a children's book? Make money writing for children's magazines? Every Friday the Writing for Children podcast publishes from The Institute of Children's Literature. Since 1969, ICL has taught over 470,205 aspiring writers. Listen to the director of both The Institute for Writers and The Institute of Children's Literature and bestselling children's author Katie Davis host the show as she focuses on the craft of writing for children. She talks about how to write a children’s book, how to write for children’s magazines, how to get paid for your writing, and how to get published in the world of kidlit. There are listener questions, with answers from the experts at the Institute, plus hard-to-find resources, tips, and links included in every week's show notes.
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Jun 15, 2018

NONFICTION ARTICLES YOU CAN WRITE, PART 2

Last week, we talked about how many magazines are looking for nonfiction articles. We covered four types of nonfiction articles including the how-to, the fact piece, sports, and the arts. This week we offer up five more nonfiction topics for magazine articles, including biography, profiles, self-help, history, and personal experience.

Remember you also want to check a magazine’s website, previous issues, and even a market guide like the one in our bookstore so you can direct your articles to the publishers most likely
to buy them.

START WRITING YOUR BOOK. Learn how to write publishable manuscripts with your own one-on-one mentor, an experienced professional author. To see if you qualify, go to writingforchildren.com/iamready

Jun 8, 2018

NONFICTION ARTICLES YOU CAN WRITE, PART 1

Magazine articles can be a great way to get your foot in the door in the publishing industry while giving you professional credits for your query letters. And, since most magazines pay, it can be a nice opportunity to supplement your income. Magazines are commonly looking for nonfiction articles. The categories of nonfiction are not hard-and-fast classifications, since a given article may contain elements of several types. Over the next two episodes we’ll give you a rough breakdown of article categories according to market terminology. We’ll describe the main features of each type and give you some tips on how to make the most of your material for an editor’s eye.

This week we talk about writing nonfiction articles with these themes: how-tos, fact pieces, sports, and the arts

START WRITING YOUR BOOK. Learn how to write publishable manuscripts with your own one-on-one mentor, an experienced professional author. To see if you qualify, go to writingforchildren.com/iamready

Jun 1, 2018

AN INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR CHRISTINE TAYLOR-BUTLER

Christine Taylor-Butler is the author of over 75 books for kids. Before writing for kids, Christine earned two degrees from MIT and worked for the likes of Harvard University and Hallmark Cards. She has contributed to numerous nonfiction series for Scholastic writing about planets, states, our founding fathers, how our government works, and more. Her YA series Lost Tribes is now available.

WE DISCUSS…
• Best practices for research
• How to research
• Traveling for research
• Organizational issues
• Confirming veracity when doing nonfiction research
• Researching for fiction…and more!

START WRITING YOUR BOOK. Learn how to write publishable manuscripts with your own one-on-one mentor, an experienced professional author. To see if you qualify, go to writingforchildren.com/iamready

May 26, 2018

ANSWERS TO YOUR BURNING QUESTIONS

It's a whole episode of your listener questions! Editor and Publisher Eileen Robinson is back answering your questions and giving it to you straight. We discuss:

  • How many and what kinds of errors are okay in a submitted manuscript?
  • Does punctuation really matter?
  • How long should an ending be?
  • What makes for an interesting/well-developed character?
  • What makes a character unlikable?
  • How do you create an unreliable narrator?
  • How does dialogue shape character?
  • In picture books, how do you shape a character in just 32 pages?

START WRITING YOUR BOOK. Learn how to write publishable manuscripts with your own one-on-one mentor, an experienced professional author. To see if you qualify, go to writingforchildren.com/iamready

May 18, 2018

WE CELEBRATE WITH OUR MOST POPULAR EPISODES

To celebrate our 100th episode, we’ve edited together
some of our most popular episodes, all in one easy-to-listen to package:

002-Three Keys to Writing Nonfiction for Children
004-Don't Tell Us a Story
005-Picture-Books-101
032-How Submissions Work

START WRITING YOUR BOOK. Learn how to write publishable manuscripts with your own one-on-one mentor, an experienced professional author. To see if you qualify, go to writingforchildren.com/iamready

May 12, 2018

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT

In this episode, Katie interviews Editor and Publisher Eileen Robinson. Editor/Publisher Eileen Robinson loves the power of stories and helping authors revise.  She feels once the draft is done, the revision process is where an author’s skill, inventiveness, and individuality begins to shine through. She has worked in children’s publishing as an editor for over 20 years, in-house and independently at both Scholastic and Harcourt — in educational publishing, school and library, with has trade, magazines, book fairs and clubs. She now owns  f1rstpages.com, partners with Harold Underdown in Kid’s Book Revisions, and publishes book through Move Books Children’s Publishing.

 

START WRITING YOUR BOOK. Learn how to write publishable manuscripts with your own one-on-one mentor, an experienced professional author. To see if you qualify, go to writingforchildren.com/iamready

May 4, 2018

4 TIPS TO TAKE YOU TO THE WINNERS' CIRCLE

If you want to know how to win a writing contest, take it from someone who has judged a lot of writing contests. Here are four things that will almost automatically get you past the first few rounds of judging. They seem like simple things, but it is amazing how many folks don't do them.

1. DON'T ENTER SOMETHING THAT DOESN'T FIT THE CONTEST

Honestly. You just cannot win if it doesn't fit the contest parameters.

If it's a picture book contest and you send the first chapter of your novel, you simply cannot win.

If it is a contest for children's mysteries and you send a mystery with an all-adult cast, you're not going to win.

If it is a children's poetry contest and your poem is about the frustrations of retirement or the pain of your divorce, winning is not going to happen.

Even if your work is brilliant, can you imagine the firestorm of protest if the winner of their contest didn't match the theme of the contest? So, save your time (and the judge's) for contests where your entry fits.

For three more tips, listen to the full episode!

 

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

 

START WRITING YOUR BOOK.

Learn how to write publishable manuscripts with your own one-on-one mentor, an experienced professional author. To see if you qualify, go to writingforchildren.com/iamready

Apr 27, 2018

DECIDE THE TURNING POINT

A good mystery becomes clear and is solved only when the main character employs a new way of looking at the problem or discovers his own pre-existing weaknesses that have been pushing him in the wrong direction. For most mysteries, solutions come by some kind of change—a change in how we look at the problem, or a change in the main character's beliefs.

Listen to the full episode for examples on how to make this work and don't miss part 1 in episode 096.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

IFW Critique Service
Don't waste your chance! Before you send your work to an editor, get professional feedback to make sure your manuscript is the best it can be. Get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Apr 21, 2018

TO BUILD A GOOD MYSTERY JUST ASK THE RIGHT QUESTION

This episode is based on a post from Jan Fields, a ICL regular contributor. The experiences I refer to are hers, not mine.

At this point, Jan has sold well over two dozen mystery novels for adults and has written and sold mysteries for children, both as short stories and chapter books. In fact, many of her adventure stories have a strong mystery structure along with the adventure. This is because

  • mysteries are puzzling and kids love puzzles
  • a good puzzle has a clear question and a "right" answer that requires careful thought
  • good puzzles are challenging but not frustrating
  • good puzzles are fun.

But your first mystery story can feel overwhelming to plan and write so today's episode reveals how Jan does it, using a method she’s honed through all these published books and stories.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

IFW Critique Service
Don't waste your chance! Before you send your work to an editor, get professional feedback to make sure your manuscript is the best it can be. Get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Apr 14, 2018

INTERVIEW WITH A CONTEST JUDGE

In this episode I interview frequent ICL contest judge and longtime instructor Nancy Coffelt. As well as being a multi-published picture book author and illustrator, Nancy is a fine artist and has been showing in galleries across the country since 1984. Her work is included in personal, public and corporate collections around the world. She works in both 2D and 3D, primarily in oil pastel and in paper mosaic. Animals are her main subject matter and Nancy welcomes custom orders! 

Nancy also writes and illustrates books for children. Her books include Catch That Baby, Fred Stays with Me, and The Big Eclipse

 

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

IFW Critique Service
Don't waste your chance! Before you send your work to an editor, get professional feedback to make sure your manuscript is the best it can be. Get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Mar 30, 2018

CHARACTER, SETTING, AND THEME

Today, we’re going to discuss three basic story elements: characters, setting, and theme. Characters, of course, are the lifeblood of fiction, whether they be human or animal. Setting denotes a story’s time and place (sometimes including its weather). There’s the point of the story—its main idea or theme.

Listen to the full episode as we go more in-depth with each of these and how to use each element in the appropriate way for the type of story you are writing.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

IFW Critique Service
Don't waste your chance! Before you send your work to a publisher or agent, get professional feedback to make sure your manuscript is the best it can be. Get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Mar 23, 2018

UNDERSTANDING THE BUILDING BLOCKS OF STORY STRUCTURE

Inspired by our course, Writing for Children and Teens, we discuss:

• A story beginning establishes a main character and a basic situation.
• The middle develops a problem or difficulty and builds to a climax, which is then resolved.
• The ending concludes the story’s events.
• This structure applies equally to a two-page tale for small children and to a 400-page adult novel.
• The story problem may not take the form of an urgent conflict or challenge.
• Setting up a pre-existing problem.
• Conflict as the element that connects a story’s beginning, middle, and ending.
• What’s wrong with an identical twin or the old, “It was all a dream . . . or was it?” scenario.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

IFW Critique Service
Don't waste your chance! Before you send your work to a publisher or agent, get professional feedback to make sure your manuscript is the best it can be. Get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Mar 16, 2018

ENGAGE THE READER BEYOND THE FIRST PARAGRAPH

Snagging the attention of a reader so that he or she will sit down with your short story or book can be challenging. We all know that short story illustrations and book covers play a part in grabbing reader attention. This part is often out of the author's hands. The same is true with things like the back of the book blurb. Grabbing that first interest is often a team effort, which is great. We can use all the help we can get. 

But once the reader begins reading, only one person can keep that reader connected and turning pages: the author. Kids have so many things pulling on their attention these days. So how do we keep a reader going past that first paragraph? Here are six tips for doing just that.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

IFW Critique Service
Don't waste your chance! Before you send your work to a publisher or agent, get professional feedback to make sure your manuscript is the best it can be. Get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Mar 9, 2018

WHAT ARE THE RULES?

If you've tried writing fantasy in any form—picture books, magazine story, chapter book, or novel—you know that a key element of fantasy is that things happen in the story that cannot happen in real life. Thus, you are deciding that your story will violate natural universal laws in some way. Some stories only slip outside the real world a little, and some create a totally extreme world that has little "normal" in it. But all stories abide by rules—you just get to decide what those rules will be.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

IFW Critique Service
Don't waste your chance! Before you send your work to a publisher or agent, get professional feedback to make sure your manuscript is the best it can be. Get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Mar 2, 2018

STORY DEVELOPMENT

In this episode, I interview author Chris Tebbetts. Chris is the author and co-author of many books for young readers. Titles include the #1 New York Times bestselling MIDDLE SCHOOL series, as well as PUBLIC SCHOOL SUPERHERO, with James Patterson and illustrator Laura Park; the New York Times bestselling STRANDED series with Jeff Probst. He has lectured and led writing workshops for kids and adults at schools, libraries, and conferences around the country, including the Antioch Writers’ Workshop; the New England Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators; and the Adirondack Center for Writing.

Chris also delved deep into story development in an exclusive article for our new Writers' Block membership! Check out how the Writers' Block can help you achieve your writing goals this year. Click here!

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

IFW Critique Service
Don't waste your chance! Before you send your work to an editor, get professional feedback to make sure your manuscript is the best it can be. Get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Feb 23, 2018

HOW TO SUBMIT TO AN EDITOR

When writers don't know how to submit to an editor it's often because they don't think like editors. Writers think about their reasons for writing something. At the submission point, editors do not care what your reason for writing something was. They don't care that you want to encourage children to obey their parents. They don't care that you want to share with kids the joys of playing outside. They don't care what motivated you to write the thing. At some point they might care. That kind of extra information is interesting. But at the query or cover letter stage, editors only care about whether they want to buy this piece. So what kinds of things will influence whether an editor will want to buy something? Let's explore that in today's episode.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

IFW Critique Service
Don't waste your chance! Before you send your work to an editor, get professional feedback to make sure your manuscript is the best it can be. Get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Feb 16, 2018

THE SECRETS TO SAMPLES

Many who write for educational publishers are very familiar with samples. These are the bits of writing publishers use to judge whether you're a writer who can do the job for them. If you've never handled writing samples, they can be scary. How do you know if the sample you're sending will wow the publisher? What about reading levels? The questions and fears can build to the point that you let a great potential opportunity pass simply because you were too scared to try. So let's tackle samples and how to handle them.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

NEW Expanded Critique Service
We've just expanded the IFW Critique Service! You can now get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. It's time to make your story the best it can be before you send it to that perfect agent or publisher. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Feb 9, 2018

WHAT'S YOUR PLAN?

There is nothing like the thrill of finishing a story or article or book. You're worked hard on it, you know it's the best you can do, and you're probably still a little in love with it. Now all you have to do is send it out. So you scramble for an agent or market. You discover it's harder than you thought to find a place that really fits with what you've written, and that's discouraging. But you pick somewhere. It fits okay. You send it out. And then you either haunt your mail––whether digital or snail mail––a lot. For days, weeks, maybe months.

And then you get a response. It may be a rejection. So what do you do next? (I mean, besides mope?) It may be an acceptance. But are you sure you want to go with that agent? That publisher? How much did you know about them? What do you do next, besides panic? Or maybe you don't get any response.

What do you do, wait forever?

The complexities of submission are why it behooves every one of us to have a submissions plan. To develop yours, listen to the full episode.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

NEW Expanded Critique Service
We've just expanded the IFW Critique Service! You can now get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. It's time to make your story the best it can be before you send it to that perfect agent or publisher. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Feb 2, 2018

TOP 3 SUBMISSION TIPS

In this episode, I interview author and 12 x 12 founder Julie Hedlund. Along with Emma Walton Hamilton, Julie co-created the Complete Guide to Picture Book Submissions. With experience on both sides of the submissions desk, they know what makes a query stand out—in any genre.

Julie Hedlund is an award-winning picture book author, 21st century publishing expert and founder of the 12 x 12 Picture Book Writing Challenge. Since 2012, 12 x 12 has encouraged thousands of picture book writers to get their stories out of their heads and onto the page. Julie is a frequent speaker at writing retreats and conferences. Her picture book credits include My Love For You is the Sun and A Troop is a Group of Monkeys. She developed The Complete Picture Book Submissions System with Emma Walton Hamilton and is one of the founders of Picture Book Summit, a yearly online conference for picture book writers from around the world.

Julie also developed content for our new Writers' Block membership! Check out how the Writers' Block can help you achieve your writing goals this year. Click here!

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

NEW Expanded Critique Service
We've just expanded the IFW Critique Service! You can now get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. It's time to make your story the best it can be before you send it to that perfect agent or publisher. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Jan 26, 2018

WHEN THE IDEAS WON'T COME

One of the questions writers tend to be asked a lot is "where do you get your ideas?" Of course, two other questions are "can you read something for me?" and "can you pass this on to your publisher/ agent?" but let's stick with the question of ideas.

Ideas are both the most valuable and the least valuable thing a writer can have. They are valuable because an idea is the seed from which a story grows. They are the least valuable because no one is paying you just for having an idea. It's the execution that brings in the cash. And few ideas are completely original. We build on the culture and work of those who came before us, even when we think we're not.

Still, it all starts with an idea. So where do they come from? Ideas grow out of all the things you've encountered or heard about in your lifetime. And each of us lives a different life, so each of us has ideas that are just ours. But each of us lives as part of a larger community (even when we're a bit hermit-like) so each of us has ideas that have connections to the community and culture in which we live.

Now, that sounds reasonable, but the process of teasing an idea out of our brain can sometimes be tricky.

Listen to the episode for tricks on getting those ideas to make an appearance.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

NEW Expanded Critique Service
We've just expanded the IFW Critique Service! You can now get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. It's time to make your story the best it can be before you send it to that perfect agent or publisher. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Jan 19, 2018

WILL SOMEONE STEAL YOUR IDEA?

Writers sometimes worry that someone will steal their idea. It's rare. If a publisher sees an idea that suits their publishing line and is executed really well, it's improbable they do anything but buy it.

But if they see an idea with amazing potential that isn't realized in the story––well, it is possible to be unethical and go looking for an author who can make that idea blossom. Still, one of the best ways to protect your idea from creative theft is to execute it well. In other words, your hard work doesn't stop at coming up with a good idea.

It begins there.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

NEW Expanded Critique Service
We've just expanded the IFW Critique Service! You can now get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. It's time to make your story the best it can be before you send it to that perfect agent or publisher. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Jan 12, 2018

WHERE DO IDEAS COME FROM?

It is a common question that is difficult to answer.

Ideas are elusive and their sources hard to pin down. In her guidebook Take Joy: A Writer’s Guide to Loving the Craft, Jane Yolen, prolific author of more than 300 books for children and young adults, reflects, “How much easier it would be if there were some central warehouse where ideas were stored, waiting to be claimed.”

Alas, this is not the case. Yolen offers the image of writers as idea archeologists. “We gather the forward and backward remnants of our own and others’ histories, mining the final part of that word: histories. What we find there is always a surprise.”

CAST A WIDE NET

“Generating new ideas isn’t something that can happen in a vacuum. Be aware of the world around you, read the news, pay attention to children and what they are interested in, and think of ways to inform that are fun,” suggests Debra Hess, former Senior Editor at Highlights for Children.

“Listen to and watch the people around you for inspiration,” advises Scholastic Editor Emily Seife.

“The best way to have a good idea is to have a lot of ideas,” says Literary Agent Emily Mitchell (Wernick & Pratt Agency LLC).

For more thoughts on idea mining, listen to the full episode!

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

NEW Expanded Critique Service
We've just expanded the IFW Critique Service! You can now get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. It's time to make your story the best it can be before you send it to that perfect agent or publisher. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

NEW Expanded Critique Service
We've just expanded the IFW Critique Service! You can now get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. It's time to make your story the best it can be before you send it to that perfect agent or publisher. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Jan 6, 2018

FROM SELF-PUBLISHED TO PUBLISHER

In this episode, I interview bestselling, self-published children's book author and publisher Maria Dismondy.

Award-winning author and founder of the publishing company, Cardinal Rule Press, Maria Dismondy inspires and educates others in the book industry. Maria’s background in early education and research enables her to touch lives the world over while touring as a public speaker in schools, community forums and at national conferences.

Maria also developed content for our new Writer's Block membership! Check out how the Writer's Block can help you achieve your goals in the new year. Click here!

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

NEW Expanded Critique Service
We've just expanded the IFW Critique Service! You can now get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. It's time to make your story the best it can be before you send it to that perfect agent or publisher. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Dec 15, 2017

HAPPY NEW YEAR: NOW WHAT?

The New Year is galloping toward us at an alarming rate. Are we ready for new challenges and the work to meet them? For many of us, preparing for the New Year means setting goals. Now, goal setting can get us in trouble as we either set unrealistic goals, goals dependent on the behavior of people and factors outside our control, and goals that reflect what we think we ought to do rather than things we are actually motivated to accomplish. This year, I've decided to pursue a new method of setting goals based on the things that have been the most rewarding for me in the past. I thought you might be interested in this six point process.

Listen to the episode for all six points!

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

NEW Expanded Critique Service
We've just expanded the IFW Critique Service! You can now get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. It's time to make your story the best it can be before you send it to that perfect agent or publisher. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

Dec 8, 2017

A KIND ASSESSMENT OF YOUR YEAR (AKA DO NOT USE YOUR PAST YEAR TO BEAT YOURSELF UP)

For many of us, as the end of the year creeps closer, so does the inevitable assessment.

• How did I do at meeting my goals?
• Where did I fall short?
• Why did I fall short?

And those are perfectly reasonable questions as long as they’re not used as a stick with which to beat ourselves up.

For many of us, the yearly assessment looked good for the first month or so. And then we began to slide farther and farther from the goals we'd intended to meet. And as we slid, so did our morale. For many, goals are completely abandoned by Fall and the self-condemnation begins.

What does it mean when we don't reach our goals and what should we do about it? Listen to the full episode to find out.

What's your question?

Tell us and we'll answer your writing questions on the podcast. Go to this link and leave your question: http://www.writingforchildren.com/speak.

NEW Expanded Critique Service
We've just expanded the IFW Critique Service! You can now get a full critique of your manuscript whether it's a picture book, middle grade chapter book, YA, Memoir, Fantasy, or Adult Fiction. It's time to make your story the best it can be before you send it to that perfect agent or publisher. Go to https://www.instituteforwriters.com/critique-service/

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