Sunday, February 12, 2017

Breakout workshop: To Rhyme or Not to Rhyme, That Is The Question, Jane Yolen

Often called the "Hans Christian Andersen of America," Jane Yolen is the author of over three hundred books, including Owl Moon, The Devil's Arithmetic and How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight?, plus seven books of adult poetry. She lectures around the world, and has won an assortment of awards.

She led a lyrical breakout session, punctuated several times with applause from attendees. To rhyme or not to rhyme . . . here are a few takeaways from Yolen's session:

Don't  write a rhyme that's sucky - write good rhymes. Anyone can write in rhyme, but not everyone can write good rhymes.

Rhyming can be a curse because writing in rhyme can seem easy, and we don't always value easy things. But don't treat rhyme like it's as easy. Because, actually, it's hard to do.

The four Rs: Rethink. Reconfigure. Reevaluate. Revise.

Work the rhyme. Don't let the rhyme work you.

Story needs to be the driver of the story—not the rhymes. So often people focus too much attention on making the words rhyme, while neglecting the story.

Experiment with writing in prose rather than rhyme. Helps you to focus on storytelling. Give yourself permission not to rhyme.

Don't abuse rhyme. Sometimes a book needs to be written in rhyme, but sometimes it does not. Test it out. Consider writing in prose instead. Bad rhyme is cringe worthy. Good rhyme is binge worthy.

Children love rhyme. There's something comforting about the predictability element of rhyme. And there's also an element of surprise. As we read a rhyming picture book, we know he rhyme is coming, but we don't know what word will be used. The element of surprise is what makes the book exciting for young readers.

Best rhymers for children.

Rhyme should lift a story higher. Elevate your reader.

It does not have to rhyme. Best examples
Where the wild things are
Ox cart man
One other...look at list

Read your rhymes out loud. Have someone else read them out loud too, so you can hear the words you've written.

No comments:

Post a Comment