what’s here

Under [Revision->Revision], you’ll find one of my most popular article series: Revision 9-1-1. These articles help pinpoint common things I notice when I look at works for free-tiques. Maybe reading these posts might save you some time, refresh your memory, or make something “click”.
Have a suggestion for an article? Can’t find your answer here? Leave a comment.

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revision 9-1-1: writing mechanics

I decided to classify this post so it applies to both PBs and longer works. If you’ve been following my Revision 9-1-1 articles, you’ve read a lot about “big” issues which crop up in manuscripts I’ve reviewed. But what’s contained in here is MORE IMPORTANT. Why? If an agent or editor senses you haven’t mastered the basics, your wonderful plot, brilliant characters, and awesome setting won’t matter.

revision 9-1-1 for fiction picture books

Here are the common things I notice when I evaluate picture book manuscripts.

Tuneless picture books

  • In my opinion, picture books structure and rhythm, much like a tune. If I can’t hear your song when I’m reading your manuscript, the result is a text which reads like “heavy metal”. Discordant and jumbled. A tuneless picture book may have a beginning that’s too long, a middle that’s too short, and an abrupt ending.

get a second opinion – critique partners, book doctors, editors, and more

Critique Partners

The children’s writing community is extremely supportive. There are people out there who will read your work for absolutely nothing (see free-tiques–I am one such crazy person). And there are many more who’ll read your work if you read theirs. This is a very common practice in our children’s writing world. I strongly advocate finding a critique partner or group who can serve as your sounding board as you work on your books.