March 24, 2008
Write What You Love
At conferences, aspiring children's book writers always ask editors what is the hot topic right now. And the editors' answers - don't write to fill a niche - write what makes you excited to write. If you wrote a book based upon today's current "hot topics", by the time your manuscript is acquired and illustrations are complete, it could easily be two years before your book is on the shelves at the local Barnes and Noble. Your topic should be your passion - something that will make you excited to sit at your computer day after day, writing, researching, revising. It has to be what you love, or you will lack the energy to bring it to publication. An author's enthusiasm shows in her writing and story. Tonight You Are My Baby is based on a mother's love for her child - I tapped into my own feelings that are fierce and passionate. The other two manuscripts that I recently submitted are are also based on my experiences. My book about a big dog that wishes he was small, is based upon our current 75 lb. English Setter/hound mix, Harry Potter, that is sure he is a lap dog. I have always been crazy about the big mutts that have been a part of my life. What fun it is to write about them now! As a child, I also spent hours exploring with my dog in the woods and fields around our house. (Those were the days when kids were free to explore and check in for dinnertime.) A natural choice for my next manuscript was based on animals in nature, and the homes that God provided for them. Each manuscript was a joy to write and flowed easily. They may not be the current "hot topic", but I'm hopefully that my passion will show in my writing and result in another acquisition.