Review In 29 Steps Plus One
I just finished to read a book. A story for kids (yes, I like them), interesting, told with participation and sometimes irony.
Which is the problem, then? Simple, if the author have been reading "How to Write a Children's Book in 30 Days or Less" by Caterina Christakos, he could have written it decidedly better.
There aren't outcrying defects, but something doesn't work. The characters seem a little flat, descriptions o vercome the story, the author sometimes appears between the lines...
Who is Caterina Christakos, anyway? She is an actress, protagonist of the film "Alone and Restless", and a model for companies like Physique and Sephora.
She is also a published author of books like: "And Dreams Lost Along the Way", "If I Could Remember All the Things She Forgot", "How to Completely Blow Your Competition Away at Any Audition" and many articles (search the net).
And she also wrote "How to Write a Children's Book in 30 Days or Less". A book that shines like a small jewel. Of course, exists plenty of books teaching to write, addressed to beginners or published authors.
This book is different. It's truly packed with useful advices since the first page. It's a book to use, read, study, take and retake, accompanying you as you write *your* book.
It is dense of precious tips. Sure, not all is new. Some techniques can be found in other books, in writing courses, in internet sites...
For example, to carry always a pad and pen, to talk with childrens, to prevent the ill-famed writer's block, to open the story with a bang... Tips perhaps already known, but here they succeed in composing an harmonic, progressive whole, a structured and organized plan.
The things become interesting when Caterina Christakos explains how to create *incredible* characters. And, incredibly, her method is one of the simplest and more intuitive.
Use the common sense, she recommends, look at people around you. Think of them as characters: your uncle behind the store counter, your cousin as a tender school-teacher, that limping boy with thick glasses as a brave hero who saves his friends...
What? You know nobody? Fear not. Switch on the television, leaf through the magazines, surf the net. But then, why to limit yourselves to the human race? In many other species you will find characters for your book.
The main point is this: you must know your characters. And to know them you must sketch their biography. Not only their height, eyes color, mannerisms, but above all their soul and mind, the experiences that forged them, the strong points and the weaknesses...
Write, write pages about them. Perhaps no one of those traits will appear in the final draft. This is not a problem: these qualities will help you to understand what your characters will make in a specified situation.
Many times will be just your characters who indicate how to pull them from intricate situations, to advance the story, to resolve the problems that will spring out along the road...
The central part of the book is... the ending! It indicates the day by day activities that will allow you to create a draft, edit it, breathe life into your characters, prepare the manuscript for publication - eventually publish it yourselves as an e-book.
All this in thirty days.
Look at the calendar on the wall in front of you, or open your diary... Which day is today? Well, between thirty days you could have finished your first book. Or your second, third... who knows?
Thirty days. Thirty-short-days.
Perhaps you will not produce twelve books this year... Not even Caterina Christakos seems to have made it, as far as I know.
Nevertheless, in thirty days you will succeed to create a story with vivid, lifelike characters, that will touch the reader's heart.
And you will not have to neglect your daily activities: for example to bath the dog, vacuum the house, do the laundry, follow your preferred show...
But it doesn't end here. Caterina Christakos makes an interesting recommendation, hard to be found in other books: use your imagination! In a new way.
Every writer possesses imagination, fantasy, ability to "see things". But often he uses it only to see herself as a scribbler that nobody will ever esteem, an author that the critics will demolish without mercy, a dreamer that no editor will want to publish.
The author invites to make the same, to use the imagination, but this time in a positive manner, in order to create a "treasure map".
The "treasure map" is a sort of great screen in which to see yourselves reaching the success, leafing with satisfaction through your published book, or signing in the middle of a fans crowd.
It's a technique useful not only to reach the success as a writer, but also to achieve whichever goal in your life.
You can have your copy of "How to Write a Children's Book in 30 Days or Less" visiting webpage of Caterina Christakos at: http://www.howtowriteachildrensbook.com
What else? Your copy, grab it as soon as possible.
And now... see you in thirty days (or less)!
About The Author
Gianfranco Cazzaro is an italian freelance writer, especially dedicated to tales and articles for children and teens. Visit his website (in italian and partly in english) at: http://locomondo.altervista.org or e-mail him: email@example.com
Get Published: The Nuts and Bolts of Good English, and How to Impress a Publisher (1)
Not all writers write good grammar. That's a fact. It's no big deal. Well, mostly it's no big deal. As a freelance books editor, I've seen hundreds of books whose authors cannot produce decent grammar and punctuation. I do it for them. I'm paid to do that -- mostly by the hour.
Balance Your Life
Balance your life ----------------------- Writing is a solitary task. Writing needs concentration and quiet. Writing requires absolute commitment. Are all there scary statements true?What is more, is it possible to balance your writing career and family without turning yourself into a zombie? Everything is feasible; I am the living example of it. There is only one secret: TIME PLAN.This is step one for the aspiring writer's success. Without it, nothing can be achieved. How can you do it? Simply make a rough plan of the time allowed to your writing project every day. It is highly important for the writer to know exactly WHEN he /she is going to settle down and write, feeling free of all the other responsibilities that he has. I have made a simple schedule. You can work out yours according to your family needs.Every morning just after breakfast, and as soon as the family have gone, I allow myself to work on my PC for one to two hours, depending on the workload of the day. Then I go on with the house chores and all the rest of the family tasks till noon. At 2 o' clock everybody is back so I serve lunch, but after that I have 2-3 hours free to work on my morning assignment. Thus, there is plenty of time to care for the family , while in the afternoons I still have time to go to my part time job in time , feeling satisfied I have worked at home on my project. In the evening I sometimes find an hour or so , when the family watch TV . This time I sit with them in the living room , having pre arranged to do the easiest tasks for my writing job, such as note taking or layout planning of new stories or articles. I use pen to paper and I don't bother if I make mistakes. Next morning, there is plenty of time to revise them and complete them. If this plan has been working perfectly for me, why not for you as well?You only have to calculate when and how long you need to write every day. Of course , you must stick to your plan and never give it up , apart from very urgent cases. Remember that your work is also urgent, so never skip it. If you respect your writing job, the others will do so too. What is more, they won't feel neglected as you will give them your care and attention at the time they are around. Furthermore, your house chores will be done in time and you won't feel overworked. " A little every day" is my motto, and, in the long run, everything is done and everybody is happy. Keeping your writing and family under control will make you feel satisfied and everyone, including you, will be happy. Also, keep in mind that there is nothing odd if you work in unconventional places.I sometimes find it stimulating to work in the living room with all the family around. Noise does not bother me ,on the contrary, it brings me more ideas. This article was outlined last evening while we were all watching a football match. Well, the truth is I did not watch much of it! I was absorbed in my new article, but that's how this idea sprang out. I can perfectly work in a chatty setting. Have you tried it? You may come up with fresh ideas and great articles. Finally, who says that writing can turn you into a zombie? Shatter the myth! It's up to you to enjoy both your family and your writing career. Simply make a time plan! Ends 622
Tips for First Time Authors : 2 Easy Steps to Make Your First Book a Success
Congratulations on writing your first book. That is quite an accomplishment. Many people dream of writing a book, but you actually did it. Way to go.
COULD YOU (not) REPEAT THAT PLEASE?
I recently read a book where everything was akimbo. Arms were akimbo, legs were akimbo. Akimbo appeared on every page. Okay every page is a slight exaggeration, but akimbo was in every chapter more than once. I started thinking of the hero in the book as Adam West's posturing Batman persona. Every writer is guilty of the akimbo type of repetitiveness once in awhile. Most of the time we're not even aware that we're echoing ourselves. How do these unconscious akimbo dittos creep into our work? The English language is so rich with descriptors, why would we rob our manuscripts of the warmth and color that this richness brings to our work? Simply put -- we're lazy. When the afore mentioned writer was feverishly scribbling away on her book, she arrived at a moment when her character took a stance, and the first word that popped into her head was akimbo. Writing akimbo was easier than it would be to stop the flow of her writing and come up with a different way of saying akimbo. The only problem is instead of going back to edit out ninety percent of the akimbos, she left them in and it became a distraction to the reader (and humorous to me, which I'm sure wasn't her intention). Don't let yourself get lazy. Go through your work and get rid of repetitive words. Especially if they're words like akimbo that are not used in everyday conversation. If you need help, go to the Georgetown Linguistics website and use their frequency index tool (see the web address below). Copy your text into the box provided and click on the "Do it!" button. This website will give you a list of every word and how many times it was used in your manuscript. I would suggest (and this is just my opinion) that if you discover that you've used akimbo more than twenty-nine times, get rid of all but one of them. By the way akimbo appears 13 times in this passage. Annoying wasn't it!
Whose Story Is It?
Whenever you sit down to plot a story (or even to think about a story) one of the first things you have to ask yourself is this: "Whose story IS it?"
How to Come Up with Fresh Story Ideas
How to Come Up with Fresh Story Ideas When Your Well has Been Tapped Dry
And What Do You Do? ... How To Know When Youre a Writer!
It's the funniest thing. When someone asks me what I do for a living, I tell them, "I'm a writer." The standard response is, "No, really, what do you do?" Somehow, I always flounder in the conversation because I never expect that type of response.
Memories Dont Fade Like Hair Does: Memoir Writing Help for You, Our Elders, to Tell Your Story
~~~Old age, to the unlearned, is winter; to the learned, it's harvest time. ~ Yiddish saying~~~
English Grammar ? Seven Outdated Rules You Can Ignore
No matter what your fifth-grade English teacher says, some grammar "rules" no longer apply. The style mavens of our day all agree that the ability to communicate clearly and concisely takes precedence over archaic grammar rules. Stop chewing your pencils and forget about these rules. Each rule is followed by a grammatically correct sentence.
Writing is a Discipline
If a writer considers writing to be a task, he/she is doomed to failure. Since it cannot be a task, then what is it? It is a discipline. What does that mean?
Six Tips for Submitting Fiction - if you want it to get published
You can learn a lot about what it takes to place a story in an ezine by starting up one of your own.
Writing Helpful Help ? A Minimalism Checklist
User documentation is all too often written by programmers for programmers. It tends to focus on the product's features, rather than the user's tasks. Generally, programmers aren't in the ideal position to be writing user documentation. They're too close to the bits and bytes, and they're too far from the user. To them, what the product can do tends to be far more important than what the user can do with the product.
Character Motivation - Always Ask WHY
For many years, I've been a tutor for students undertaking courses in writing romance, crime or children's stories. In that time, I've marked thousands of assignments. I've seen hundreds of plots, thousands of scenes, millions of words. And if I had to give writers one piece of advice after seeing all those millions of words, it would be this: always ask 'WHY?'
Top 5 Rules of English Grammar
Communication is effective when we follow certain rules. These rules make the written words understood. A writer should make the reader's job easier by communicating what he or she wants to communicate. If you also want to write, pay respect to your readers. Don't take them for granted. Learning and understanding the basic rules of English Grammar, you will surely be able to avoid ill-formed, confusing sentences. Hence, following and applying the rules of English Grammar and thereby producing a good writing can help the readers save their time from trying desperately to guess what you mean. This article covers the top 5 rules of English Grammar.
Be A Savvy Writer: Go Where The Business Is
If you're a writer, you're in business. It doesn't matter whether you're writing picture books, or a self-help book for underachievers, or promotional material and flyers for anyone who wants it... YOU'RE IN BUSINESS.
Sharpen Your Writing With Structure
At some point, every serious writer is forced to sit down and conclude that there is something seriously wrong with their work. It wanders; it is pretty in some spots and horribly ugly in others. It doesn't always make sense, and is uneven in places. Even though every sentence is grammatically correct, there is something fundamentally broken about the piece.
Writing the KAIZEN Way
Over the past eight years or so, I have tutored thousands of writing students. They come in all flavours: retirees who at last have time to satisfy a dream; young mothers who want a job they can do at home; bored workers who feel their creativity is being stifled by their existing careers.
A Writers Tools
If you are like most writers, you're constantly searching for tips on technique that will help you to increase your chances of publication. You eagerly pounce on articles that tell you how to plot better, write better and sell better. In addition, you occasionally buy books on writing, or do a writing course, or attend a seminar.
Apostrophe Usage Made Simple
According to one of my previous articles, whenever a Southernersays "Y'all watch this," get out of the way because those areprobably the last words he will ever say.
Just about everyone is familiar with this beginning: "In the beginning God created the heavens and earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep . . ." (Genesis 1: 1-2 RSV) In a sense we're playing God when we write a story. We create the characters, plot, and setting, turning a blank page-nothingness-into a compelling story.
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