Saturday, February 26, 2011

Four Tips For Writing Children's Educational Stories

Visit the Home of the Fightin’ Bookworms! I am writing a book about a character I previously introduced in another of my short stories, Cindy the Story Teller I suppose I enjoyed the character so much I decided to use her again in another short story. It also helped that I received a lot of positive fed back about the character of Cindy. Hopefully if this works out, I will continue to use her character in a series of short stories. Instead of telling fairy tails however, this time I am giving her stories of educational value. Hopefully younger children will learn something from Cindy's stories.

Since today is Saturday, I did a lot of my research. I have this routine I do on the week ends and research is one of them. This is not the first day I've done research for this project, but today I spent a lot of time on it. I dare not get anything wrong in writing this story. I'm pretty sure I now have enough research completed on my topic to be well on my way.

Helpful tips for writing an educational story for children.
1) Know your niche. Make sure the story is approprote for the age group you plan to write for. The niche I write for are children between the ages of 10 to 14. Therefore I am constantly looking at subjects that are of interest to them. I am also a poet and I use the same principle when I am writing poetry.
2) KISS..... Keep the facts straight and simple. Don't give too much information about the subject because you wouldn't want to lose your audience. Just make sure to write about all the important things concerning it in a simple lighthearted, yet factual way.
3) Research, research, and research some more....that goes with keeping your facts simple and straight. Good research helps you to keep your credibility and respect as an author.
4) Use illustrations as necessary. When writing an educational story for children, the illustrations are what helps to tell the story (as in other types of stories as well) They are colorful and draws more attention to the subject. So it is important to have good illustrations to go along with your important book.

Those are the important tips for writing an educational story for children. I hope I've been of some assistance to you.

If anyone is interested in reading Cindy the Story Teller, please visit my page on the author's den at: www.authorsden.com/carolynsands Also if you like poetry, go take a look at some of my work at: www.motivationalpoetry.webs.com

Thanks for your interest.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Allison Pearson's NPR Interview

BlogWithIntegrity.com I happened to have been listening to Fresh Air, on the national public radio station this afternoon when I was pleasantly surprised to hear Allison Person being interviewed. Just in case some of you don't know who Allison Pearson is, allow me the opportunity to introduce her to you. Allison Pearson is a British journalist who has received multiple awards in her field. She is also noted for her best selling book, I Don't Know How She Does it. The book was written in 2002, became a best seller, and was later made into a movie staring Sarah Jessica Parker. The story is about the everyday concerns of a working mother who is doing a balancing act between her work and her home life with her family.

She has a second book, I think I love you, which was written in 2010 and has gotten rave reviews. It tells a heart warming story of a teenage girl who is in love with David Cassity in the 1970s. Twenty years later she meets the man who was responsible for answering the letters for David Cassity.

I am impressed with Allison Pearson's creativity and writing skills. She is funny and believable. I am especially impressed after learning in the interview that she herself is a mother of two and wrote a lot of her material at 4 am while her children were safely sleeping in their beds. That takes sheer determination and dedication.

I don't believe you can have that kind of dedication without passion. In this case Passion is the difference between putting out great work, and just doing ok work. The lesson here is to stay passionate about your work. Take the extra steps to do what's required to put out that next great book.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

How I Spend My Week Ends as an Aurthor

BlogWithIntegrity.com For me, the week ends are used for organizing and regrouping. This week end is no exception. I reorganized my writing projects to make them flow better. I took a look at what I felt was working and what wasn't. Then I made the appropriate changes. Since many authors are self employed, it is the author's responsibility to self critique. I do this by self editing and then passing my work on to someone else to do more editing. and to keep a breast of the latest news affecting my chosen genre.

This is how I spend my week ends in order to make my work week flow better.

1) Catch up on reading. Read emails and other authors blogs that were missed during the week. Catch up on reading the e-zines and news items from the New York Times, Huff post, The Sun, and etc. Also try to finish up with whatever book I happen to be reading.
2) Research my writing project if needed.
3) Write blogs for the upcoming week, or at least list subjects of interest, set aside and write on them later if time is an issue
4) Tweak website if needed.

I guess you can tell I'm not a social butterfly. And if I was one, a lot of my work would go undone. But since my writing is my passion, I am in sort of a heaven when I have the peace and quiet to do what I need to do in a field that I love.
What about you?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Research

BlogWithIntegrity.com Today I spent a lot of time doing research for one of the current projects I'm working on. I enjoyed the time I spent researching my subject, and realized quickly that even though I'm working on a book for children, I could never write the book I have in mind without first doing the research. I definitely feel better prepared and am eager to put my book together.

I really appreciate the research. First of all, it refreshes the mind and will prevent unnecessary errors in the contents of the book. If the facts are not correct, this will create problems later, as I'm sure you have already learned in journalism 101.

If you are anything like me (which I suspect you are) there is a feeling of jubilance once the research has been completed. The excitement you must feel is worth every ounce of energy it took. Once your research and thoughts are organized, I believe that excitement will lead to the publication of a good book. My juices are flowing now, and I'm inspired to write a book that I think the children will enjoy.

You may take a look at excerpts from my new book of poetry by visiting my website at www.motivationalpoetry.webs.com

Have fun with your research.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

A Great Book Reading by Sapphire

BlogWithIntegrity.com I went to a reading given by the author Sapphire this week end. In case any of you don't know who Sapphire is, allow me to fill you in. She is the author of the book "Push", which inspired the movie Precious. You may remember that Precious was an award winning movie back in 2009.

If you were one of the lucky ones who saw it, you will most likely have the same feelings I have towards the movie. It brings out my sensitivity toward young poor and disadvantaged children everywhere, especially girls. Who could ever forget Precious, or her mother's character in the movie played by Monique. Monique went on to win an academy award for her work.

Anyway, it was very exciting for me to meet the author that inspired the movie. I hadn't bought her book before her reading but after seeing her in person and listening to her dramatic reading, I could not leave the building without getting an autographed copy of her book.

I also learned a thing or two listening to her read from selected pages in the book.
Tone is everything. You must project the right tone in your voice, and in just the right pitch to get across to your audience what you want them to know, and even what you want them to feel. In a way, the author will need to be a bit of an actor during a good book reading. A good book reading will no doubt convert into a good book signing

I believe a good book reading is something all authors should aspire to do. Your presentation can tell a great story, making everyone present wanting the book. Book sales convert into cash in your hands.

My book of poetry won't be ready for another week or so, But please feel free to read a few selected poems I placed on the website I recently launched to advertise it. Go to: www.motivationalpoetry.webs.com

Thanks for visiting.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Tweaking Completed

BlogWithIntegrity.comWell I am determined to get my website issues resolved. (which I did, for the most part)I've stated many times that I am excited and passionate about writing, but the website is a little bit of a challenge for me, but thankfully I am learning about this in more details.

I tweaked the website for my book of poems and I am much happier with it today. I owe thanks to my 14 year old granddaughter for pointing me in the right direction. I was completely clueless about how to set it up but thankfully I've got a granddaughter who is a bit of a computer nerd. YEAH!! You can visit my website at: www.motivationalpoetry.webs.com You will need to copy and past the website address in your browser if the link doesn't work.

Now that the tweaking is complete, I can resume to doing what I love to do best. And that is to write, of course. And the good thing is none of us are limited in what we write about, or who we write for. We all know something about a multitude of subjects. What subjects are you most passionate about? Do you like creative writing? Fiction, or non-fiction? What you don't know, research the mater properly like any great author would. I don't know about you, but my juices are flowing just thinking about all the many possibilities.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Poem Request From Oprah

Well I've finally got my poems off of my desk and mailed them to Oprah Wimfrey today via email. Oprah is requesting people to send her their favorite poem. She will make a selection from the thousands that will undoubtedly be sent to her, to be published in her upcoming April O magazine.

After reading and re-reading several of the poems I wrote, today I was finally able to make my selections. I sent her three. The rules are unclear to me as to how many poems a person can submit, but I hope I am safe in this case. I happen to love the poems I selected but the response to her request must be massive. So I won't hold my breath waiting for a response.

I would love for you to take a look at some of my poems for yourself and let me know what you think of them. You can visit my website by going to www.motivationalpoetry.webs.com

So all of you poetry lovers, there is still some time left for you to send Oprah your favorite poem. Go to oprah.com to see the full details.

Actually, I'm doing a juggling act by working on four different writing projects at the same time. One of them is for the poetry book, and another is for the short story series featuring Cindy the Storyteller. I have two other projects on hold for now because I need to organize my time in order for it to work out better for me. As you know of course, being organized means everything in this business.

Thanks for visiting.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Musical Words

I continue to be amazed at the music simple words could make. No big deal or much fuss either, but a lot of rhythm and piazzas is noted. I'm talking poetry that can make a beautiful musical understanding of practically anything. This is nothing new of course. Words have been making music practically from the beginning of time.

The rhythm of words are a great teaching tool for kids too.
Teaching children could be very challenging but of all the jobs there is to do, in my opinion educating a child probably ranks number one. Capturing the interest of children can be tricky sometimes, so their curiosity must be peeked.

First let me clarify that I am an author/poet who happens to love writing in the children's genre as well as for the adults. I believer in the need to make their learning process both interesting and fun. But obviously we can't do that without capturing their attention.

This is nothing new. Rhyming words with teaching has been used successfully for years by a lot of great authors and teachers. I consider this to be one example of the saying: "If it is not broke, don't fix it." So I am only continuing to go with what works.

I notice when I rhyme things with my grand kids they tend to remember it a lot better. For example, if I should say that Abraham Lincoln was one of our most important presidents, to help them remember better I can say:

Abraham Lincoln was our 16th president.
He fought to end slavery and out it went.
In 1863 the slaves were finally set free;
He won a victory for you and for me.

My 4 year old grandchild knows that verse very well. Look at what she can tell you from learning this simple verse in less than 5 minutes:
1) Abraham Lincoln was our 16 th president
2) He worked to free the slaves
3)The slaves were freed in 1863

Poetry is incorporate when teaching practically anything. Look at this:

The solar system is awesome and grand.
With amazing planets you should know and understand.
Their names are Mercury, Venus, earth, and mars.
And all should be studied with the highest regards.
Then there is Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune
Two of these planets are without moons.

These poems could be changed as you would like. They can give more information, or make a better rhyme. but the trick is to keep it simple with only a few short lines (the fewer the better) and for only one verse.

Children like the rhymes....the beat of the words. It is much like music, don't you think?

You can visit my website and read excerpts from my new book of motivational poetry at: www.motivationalpoetry.webs.com

Thanks for visiting.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

My New Website

Well I've had a pretty busy week (thankfully) I like busy, but this time I am happy that there are only two days left in the work week. I have my web site up and running to advertise my new book: "Motivational Poems" YEAH!!! Please stop by and take a look when ever you get the chance. Go to www.motivationalpoetry.webs.com If the link does not work, you may need to copy and paste the address in your browser. I've placed excerpts from the poetry on the site, and hopefully you will be encouraged and inspired by them.

If you are a new author, this is something you may want to keep in mind. You will need a website or a blog to advertise your new book. Your website is like putting the icing on the cake. It is like showing off to the world what you have produced. How you present it is up to you.

I'm now concentrating my efforts on a series of children's stories. Since I'm basically writing about animals and insects, I spend a lot of time reading about..... animals and insects :) Actually, I'm learning more about these little critters than what I previously thought I knew.

You may read two of my short stories on my page at the author's den www.authorsden.com/carolynsands and if you like being motivated, visit my website at www.motivationalpoetry.webs.com

Thanks for your interest.