“30 Nuggets of Knowledge from the Tucson Festival of Books, Part 2”


Beyond the literature tents and inside the red brick walls, Lynn discovered the 30 Nuggets of Knowledge that has enriched her writing.

I continue on with the golden wisdom from the 2015 Tucson Festival of Books. Again, below are the second set of 10 morsels (in no particular order) of writing insight from successful children book authors: 11. When you hit a dry spell in writing, go work out, take a walk, etc. Just live your life and your writing will come back to you. 12. Picture books should not have too many words. Remember to leave room for the illustrations. 13. The action in a picture book needs to move the book along. Also called page turns. 14. Read a lot of current picture books. “Get them in your bones!” 15. You have to remember why you want to write for children. You must be willing to do whatever it takes to “get there.”


Illustrator Lynne Avril (standing) moderates the Series Panel, featuring children’s book authors (l-r): Betty Birney, Ursula Vernon, Doreen Cronin.

16. Know the craft of writing, the children’s book industry, and what agents and editors want. 17. It takes just as long to get an agent as it does it does a publisher. 18. Most authors must market their book even when they publish with a bigger publisher. 19. Fantasy writing has rules you must follow. 20. Starting a manuscript is easy. Ending it is harder. In my next blog post, we’ll look at the concluding 10 nuggets of knowledge in Part 3. I’ve incorporated #14 into my weekly routine, how about you? Also, I’m discovering # 17 and 20 are very true! Your Input: Among this second set of 10 nuggets, which speak to you the most and why?


8 thoughts on ““30 Nuggets of Knowledge from the Tucson Festival of Books, Part 2”

  1. I am following #14 too but I have read a lot of picture books online and I suspect most of them are self-published. I am not very impressed. I will more real books at the library. That is always fun.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. #11 and #16 — Knowing the craft of writing minimizes dry spells, but sometimes still the words just don’t flow right. Taking a break and getting away from the page almost always results in better writing (for me). Sometimes, when I’m under deadline, “getting away” is just 3 minutes to go grab a fresh cup of coffee. Remarkably, that still works.

    Liked by 1 person

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