- Picture books are short. Most unpublished manuscripts she sees should be cut in half.
- Every word in a picture book should feed the illustrations. You don't have to create the entire world as you do with a novel.
- When you're writing, you're writing for rhythm. Keep in mind that an adult will have to read your text maybe a thousand times--great rhythm makes that bearable.
- Write with attention to page turns in mind--you generally have 14 page spreads.
- Read read read piles and piles and piles of picture books.
- You need a fresh idea--and that's not easy. (There isn't much that hasn't been done. You must come up with fresh spins on an old concept.)
- In picture books, there has to be a payoff for the child. Keep in mind there's nothing a child want more than to take control of his world, while still feeling safe.
Sunday, August 1, 2010
Marion Dane Baur (continued)
Some of Marion's picture book rules (which, she said, may seem obvious):