Wednesday, May 30, 2007

How To Write In The Children’s Market (Part 4)

This is going to be my fourth article of many to come. The article series is the how to when it comes to writing in the children’s market. It is going to be a considerably long series so keep checking back for new updates.

Chapter Books

First through fourth graders are reading on their own now but there still not quite ready for the longer traditional novels. The children are starting to make their own decisions now and they are usually buying their own books because they receive allowance now.

At this age kids absolutely want to read about other kids that are just like them. The characters need to be their age or a little older. At this age males and females want to read about strong characters of the same sex. In both cases these books should contain none or almost no adults at all. At all times the protagonist should be a child and all conflicts should be resolved by kids.

Chapter books have many short chapters but unlike easy readers they don’t rely very heavily on illustrations. The chapter book needs to stand alone on its story only and not rely on pictures. In the case of chapter books almost all illustrations are done with simple black and white shadings.

Text appears more deeply on the page than in the easy reader but lots of dialogue still helps to keep the story moving. The chapter books are usually faster paced and include complicated plots. The character list in a chapter book is usually small. The readers are at the age that they can handle more complicated issues. At this age kids love collecting so this explains the popularity of series books. However the readers of chapter books still like the predictability in these books.

When it comes to writing chapter books you can go ahead and use different kinds of sentence structures which can allow for more difficult vocabulary being used. This will make the story flow more like the natural language that it should sound like.

Dale Mazurek

Dale is presently trying to get his first novel published. He has been writing professionally on line for a couple years now. You can check out 3 of his very popular blogs at or and

Saturday, May 26, 2007

How To Write A Short Story (Part 3)

Writing short stories can be very valuable to building your writing career. Short stories are also a very quick way to put your feelings on paper. Starting to write short stories can be a tough endeavor but the more you write the better you will get. In the next couple of weeks I will be submitting a 10 part series on how to write your short story. This will be the third edition on how to write short stories.

You Have To Build Your Character

It is important to make your character bigger then real life. The key to this is knowing more about the character then you will ever need or use in your story. Below I will make a list of character traits that you should think about for your character.

Name, age, job, ethnicity, appearance, residence, something hated, secrets, strong memories, any illnesses, nervous gestures, sleep patterns, favorite colors, friends, favorite foods, drinking patterns, phobias, faults, pets, religion, hobbies, marital status, kids, temperament.

It’s really only important that you build all these traits for your character. The reader doesn’t have to know all of them but they will help you when you are making your character believable for your reader. There is however four important areas that your reader needs to know.

Appearance- Your reader does have to be able to visualize what your character looks like.
Actions- You have to describe actions so that your reader can understand what kind of person your character is.
Speech- Your character has to be always talking. This will develop him quicker as a character instead of just announcing important facts.
Thoughts- You have to show your characters memories, fears, hopes or whatever feelings you would like. This will bring your character into the readers mind.

This is just a brief outline into building an identity for your character that the reader can identify with and also believe in. This is the end of my third article on how to write a short story. I make these tips available because I think there is an author in everyone. Just because you write doesn’t mean you have to get paid for it. You should first and foremost write because you love it and everything will eventually fall into place.

Dale Mazurek

Dale is a professional on line writer. You can find his writing tips at two of his other very popular blogs can be found at and

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

How To Write In The Children’s Market (Part 2)

This is going to be my second article of many that I will be writing on how to break into the children’s writing market. This is going to be a considerably long series so keep checking back for updated posts.

Writing for kids can be one of the greatest ways to break into the writing field. You have such a wide range of readers from toddler to young adults. All you have to do is figure out what you want to write about and you’re on your way.

Chances are good that when you think of children’s books, picture books pop right into your mind. For the most part picture books are usually directed to kids from toddler to grade 4. One thing you have to keep in mind is that the book has to be appealing to the adults as well because they are the ones shelling out the money for them.

Picture books can range from a variety of different topics. You can have fiction, non fiction; they can be about animals, or about different people interacting with different stuff.

There is a basic format for picture books. Traditionally there 32 pages long. That includes every page from front to back. Because of the pictures your story usually has to be told in 14 pages of print. Another thing to remember is that you usually only has around 1000 words to use to write your story. So you have to get a good story in a small amount of space.

Picture books can be tough to write. So many people think that picture books are the way to go but soon find out that that’s not the case. You have to make sure that every word, picture and page has the most amount of detail that counts. You have no room for unnecessary content.

Just because you’re intended audience is youths doesn’t mean every word in your book has to be 4 letters long. Remember its going to be the parents for the most part that are reading the books to their youngsters. Also there is a misconception that all picture books must be rhyming. This is in no way true. As long as you develop a great story rhyming is nice but doesn’t really matter.

Chances are if you think about it then it has been written about already. That’s okay for you to go ahead but you have to find a fresh new way to present the idea. You have to make the publishers want to use it.

Don’t worry if you can’t draw. The editors want to first see if your book can stand on its own with out the pictures. If at that time they decide they like it they will hire an illustrator to help with the pictures. You have to remember that when you are writing a picture book it’s not only about the words. The colors and scenes have to be vibrant. They have to stand on their own.

Before you attempt to write your first picture book make sure you go to your local library or book store and read several different books by several different authors. No one wants you to plagiarize but by studying different styles you can than begin to develop your own style.

Dale Mazurek

Dale is in the process of getting his first novel published and has been writing professionally on line for two years now. You can check out his ever growing blogs at or or

Monday, May 14, 2007

How To Write In The Children’s Market (Part 1)

In the next couple of months I will be writing a number of articles about how you can break into the children’s market of writing. This will be a considerably long series so I suggest you keep checking back for the newest post.

Writing children’s literature is a great way to break into the writing market. There is an opening for a wide range of topics because the readers range from toddler to young adult. It’s up to you to figure out what best suits your writing and your ideas. You just have to figure out what you want to write about.


Magazines can be the perfect place to break in with your short stories. When you write in magazines it’s the perfect way to build your writing credentials and it also helps to establish you as a professional writer. You don’t just have to publish short stories either. You can publish poetry, verse, puzzles, fiction or non fiction. Books can take for ever to hit the market but with magazine articles you can have your work published in months if not weeks sometimes.

Magazines are a perfect place to get specialty pieces published. As we all know most magazines limit their focuses on specific content.

Magazines aren’t only limited in their content. The intended audiences of most periodicals are limited to particular age levels and genders. Babybugs intended audience is toddlers while the Keynoter is aimed at high school students. Boys Life is geared to boys and Hopscotch is a magazine for girls.

Some magazines devote entire issues to a focused topic or theme. It’s in your best interest to read a magazine that you intend to publish to. Make sure your familiar with the magazine and what kind of content it will accept. Make sure you understand the publisher’s contents. You also want to make sure you know when the magazine publishes. This way you can plan ahead with your stories.

Many writers have gotten their start by writing in magazines. Writing for children can definitely be the easiest genre to follow if you want to follow your dreams.

Dale Mazurek

Dale is in the process of getting his first novel published. He is also a professional on line writer. You can check out 3 of his very popular blogs at or and

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Writing Angles

As a novice writer I firstly write for the love of writing. First of all for me writing does not mean paying the bills. I do make a few dollars here and there and with tips and tales like the ones below my writing is always getting better and better.

1. Organization

If you are having a hard time finding the best way to organize the plans for your ideas then this is what you can try. Get a number of index cards and write down each main topic. Now decide what’s best for your readers and arrange the cards in an order that makes the most sense.

2. Wordiness

The great American writer Thomas Wolfe was famous not only for the quality of his prose but also for its quantity. He had a very hard time cutting excess words from his drafts. “Although I am able to criticize wordiness and over abundance in others,” Wolfe wrote to his editor Maxwell Perkins about his novel Look Homeward, Angel, “I am not able practically to criticize it in myself. The business of selection and revision is simply hell for me-my efforts to cut out 50 000 words may sometimes result in adding 75 000.” The first draft of Look Homeward, Angel came in at over 1000 pages. Wolfe and Perkins did a nice job editing, however, the edition I have is around 750 pages.

3. More Purposes

A specific piece of writing can have more than one purpose, and often does. A fable, for example, amuses its readers as it teaches a lesson.

4. Ghost Words

Ghost words are words that never existed until someone mistook an error for a word. For example, dord (meaning density) began life as an error made in transcribing a card that read: “D or d, meaning a capital D or a small d-for ‘density.’ “The word appeared in the 1934 edition of the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, but it was eliminated from future editions.

5. Adjective Phrase

An adjective phrase is a prepositional phrase that functions as an adjective in a sentence. For example: The caption on the cartoon made them laugh. The adjective phrase “on the cartoon” describes the noun “caption.”

Looking around in any magazine, book or writing website you can find hundreds and hundreds of articles and tid bits like these. In the future I will be publishing many more articles of this sort. If you choose to use any of this advice then great. If not then at least enjoy reading.

Dale Mazurek

Dale is an expert on line writer. You can check out his on line affiliate program at or you can check out two of his very popular blogs at and

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Writing Tid Bits

As novice writers we are always looking for little things to help our writing. In this article I am going to stray away from the serious side of the business and provide a number of tidbits that have to do with writing. Some are humorous, some are not. Some are useful and some are not. I hope you find them interesting.

1. Dewey Decimal

When using the Dewey Decimal System make sure you copy down the call number exactly as it appears in the card catalogue. Failing to do this will make it tough to find your book. It might even make it impossible.

2. Longest Sentence

What is the longest sentence in the world? In 1957 George Andrezeyevski wrote a book called Gates Of Paradise with no punctuation so technically this could be one long sentence. But Sylvester Hassel had a 3153 word sentence in the book History of the Church of God.

3. What is Writing

Writing is as much process as product. As a result, people often write to discover what they want to say. The process of writing can be an act of discovery, start out knowing where you’re going and get there just fine.

4. Study, Study, Study

It’s so important to study everything you read. Study opening paragraphs in newspaper and magazine articles. You might be surprised to discover that topic sentences such as statements of purpose often appear in the middle and end of paragraphs as well as in the beginning.

5. Speeches

Okay now you have to write a speech so this will help a little. When you write a speech, use punctuation not only to indicate the usual sentence breaks, but also to allow you to pause for emphasis when necessary.

There are hundreds of little points out there to help would be writers or even veteran writers. From time to time I will put out an article like this one and hopefully someone can take some of these tid bits and use them in their writing.

Dale Mazurek

Dale is a professional on line writer. He is also in the process of getting his first novel published. You can check out some of his very popular blogs at or and his newest