Penfold advised beginning by begin separating writing and editing, your inner author and your inner editor. Don't listen to the editor while you draft; get it on the page so that then the editor can make it better.
Questions the editor asks about picture books
- Does this story lend itself well to an illustrated 32-page format?
- Does this story sustain repeat readings?
- Will people pay for it?
- Is there enough story?
- Does your book do more than one thing?
- How does it compare to other books that you enjoy?
- Are there multiple layers?
- A picture book should do more than one thing. For example:
- For an underserved community.
- Is it ready?
- Your book needs to be awesome. Is it, or just OK?
- Read your work aloud.
- Give your work to a disinterested reader.
- Someone who hates children's books is a good choice.