Have Fun Writing for Children – Guest Post By Darlene Foster

If you like children and are quite childish, something I´ve often been accused of, then writing for children may seem easy and natural.

I began my love affair with words many years ago. Some of my fondest memories are being read to as a child, visiting the library, and discovering the ability to read by myself. I still have worn copies of favourite childhood books, such as The Bobbsey Twins, Little Women, Black Beauty and Anne of Green Gables; and revisit these old friends from time to time. Books and children go together like toast and jam. Recently, one seven-year-old friend said to me, “Who doesn´t like books?” I never show up without books as gifts for my grandchildren. I am known as The Book Grandma.

It´s not surprising that I love writing stories for children.

While writing for children can be fun, it isn´t easy. It requires removing yourself from the adult world and thinking like a twenty-first-century kid (unless you’re writing a historical novel, then a kid from whatever century you are writing about). Fortunately, I like to hang out with kids, listen to the words they use, observe the gestures, the looks, the trends. I also enjoy reading children’s books to see what sparks the interest of today’s young people. Children notice things adults don’t and could care less about things adults think are important. It’s necessary to get into their headspace. And guess what? While I’m writing, I get to be a kid again – and what could be more fun!

Here are a few tips, based on what I’ve learned after writing eight middle-grade books.

  1. Kids like strong main characters, role models. Characters willing to take risks and sometimes mess up, but coming out on top in the end. Keep in mind the characters you liked as a child.
  2. Young people often act childish, but they can also be very mature, especially under pressure.
  3. The hero/heroine can possess extraordinary skills, but they still need to be real so readers can identify with them.
  4. Dialogue moves the story along, breaks up description and gets the reader to know characters better. Each character needs his/her own voice.
  5. Show emotion, don’t tell. This is true in all writing but especially when writing for kids. Instead of writing Jane was homesick, how about, Jane spent a lot of time looking at pictures of her family, often bursting into tears.
  6. Listen to kids talk so you get the lingo right. They are not teenagers so they won’t talk like them, not yet. They often parrot their parents and other adults around them.
  7. Watch movies and TV shows with kids in them, observe how they act and talk.
  8. Be aware that kids speak differently in different parts of the country, and the world.
  9. If you aren’t sure about something, ask a kid. I do this all the time. In fact, I have a street team of young readers from age 7 to 12. They are so helpful. Don’t ask a parent, they are the last to know how their kids talk or act!
  10. Kids are always giving me ideas. I keep a notebook and write down things they say and do, often incorporating these in my stories. They can be so clever too. Often wise beyond their years.

Writing for children is important because I want children to develop the same love of books I had as a child. A love that doesn’t fade with time. Children’s books create lifelong readers; readers who eventually buy adult books.

So if you have been thinking of writing for children, give it a try. Have fun and let yourself be a kid again!

 Thanks, Aurora, for the opportunity to talk about something I’m passionate about. If anyone has questions, I’d be happy to answer them in the comments.


About Darlene:

Darlene Foster is a Canadian author who has written the popular Amanda Travels series, featuring a spunky twelve-year-old who loves to travel to unique places where she encounters mystery and adventure while learning about another culture. Readers of all ages enjoy travelling with Amanda as she unravels one mystery after another in various countries. Darlene has won prizes for her short stories and a number of them have been published in anthologies. She has also written a bi-lingual book for English/Spanish readers.

 Darlene grew up on a ranch near Medicine Hat, Alberta, where her love of reading inspired her to travel the world and write stories. Over the years she held wonderful jobs such as an employment counsellor, ESL teacher, recruiter, and retail manager, and wrote whenever she had a few spare minutes. She is now retired and has a home in Spain where she writes full time. When not travelling, meeting interesting people, and collecting ideas for her books, she likes to spend time with her husband and entertaining dog, Dot.

Her books include Amanda in Arabia: The Perfume Flask, Amanda in Spain: The Girl in The Painting, Amanda in England: The Missing Novel, Amanda in Alberta: The Writing on the Stone, Amanda on The Danube: The Sounds of Music, Amanda in New Mexico: Ghosts in the Wind, and Amanda in Holland: Missing in Action. Amanda in Malta: The Sleeping Lady will be released in the spring of 2021. 


Connect with Darlene:

website http://www.darlenefoster.ca/

Blog https://darlenefoster.wordpress.com
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/DarleneFosterWriter/
Twitter https://twitter.com/supermegawoman
Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/darlenefoster
Amazon author page https://www.amazon.com/Darlene-Foster/


 

THE MAGICAL RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE WRITER AND THEIR NOTEBOOKS #AMWRITING – Written By Lucy Mitchell

Lucy Mitchell explains why there is a magical relationship between a writer and notebooks. Thanks so much for your post, Lucy! How many people don’t understand that bond.


#writingcommunity #writerslife

This weekend will be spent clearing out my dressing table and creating a temporary work desk. As I am working from home in my day job, the teenagers are off school due to half term, my husband is also working from home and we are in the middle of a strict lockdown, I cannot spend the next two weeks working from the living room. Not only will I have to put up with pyjama clad teens wandering about in the background while I am on Zoom calls, I will also have to listen to my loved one shouting at everyone to keep the noise down from his desk.

Underneath my dressing table there are three large boxes filled with notebooks. Some of my old stories were born inside these notebooks and some still reside between the pages. I have to write this post because I think my family believe this will be the weekend I finally clear out all my boxes of notebooks.

CONTINUE READING HERE

Marketing – Sundance “on Tour”

After I had published ‘Soul Taker’, I found a link to The Good Ebooks & Books Company online, which offers book ads, free as well as paid ones. I checked it out, and it seemed a decently long-existing way to advertise my book. I tried it with the free version.

Since ‘Soul Taker’ was accepted in a quick and uncomplicated way, I decided to try and set up the second book in the series, Sundance.

Once again I filled in the form online and got another polite and friendly email, confirming my submission and telling me that they’ll get back to me as soon as possible.

After only a very short delay I received the information that ‘Sundance’ is online. Of course, they were telling me what advantages a ‘premium’ account would have, but I didn’t get the impression they’re telling me: “Either you’ll upgrade or…”

“Good E-Books” connects authors and readers. They placed ‘Sundance’ in the middle as a New Release. They set it up with its cover picture, the blurb and linked it to its Amazon page.

https://www.goodebooks.net/releases.html

 

New Links For Sundance

 

I was informed that Sundance can be found on four additional Websites. If you feel like getting it on your Kobo, as a paperback or even on iTunes, don’t hesitate: You will find the 2nd book of ‘The Council Of Twelve’ series here:

Amazon Ebook US

Amazon Paperback US

Amazon Ebook UK

Amazon Paperback UK

Amazon Ebook DE

Amazon Paperback DE

Smashwords

Barnes & Noble

iTunes

Kobo

SCR|BD

!Indigo

 

Watch the trailer, in case you didn’t see it yet:

 

 

 

It’s ‘Sundance’ Giveaway Day! Be A Part Of It And Win!

As previously announced today is

Sundance Giveaway Day

on the Website of the Paranormal Romance Guild


The Release Giveaway will run from

August 18 – August 24, 2019

Check it out, read, comment, play along – and win.

There are going to be three winners and each one will get wonderful prices.

 

Check out the Release Giveaway here


You can find the books and where to get them here:

Soul Taker:
https://books2read.com/u/m2roOj
_______________________________________

Sundance:
https://books2read.com/u/mgGGeX

Reminder Of The Release Giveaway for Sundance

The Paranormal Romance Guild will publish a ‘Release Giveaway’ for ‘Sundance’ running from

August 18 through August 24, 2019

I’m very excited about that!

Sunday you will find the Giveaway on the website of the Paranormal Romance Guild:

https://www.paranormalromanceguild.com/

There will be three winners! Make sure you are going to participate. I’d be very happy to welcome you there!.


Sundance Got Its Second 5-Star Review

I’m so very excited to see that Sundance got its second 5-star review. I’m happily smiling my day away. 😀


Having read the first of this series “Soul Taker” I knew we were being introduced to new worlds and adventures and looked forward to the next installment. And I can safely say this second book in the series did not let me down. If anything I felt it really helped things take off even more.

Where in “Soul Taker” we were introduced to an existing angel who gets promoted from Soul Taker to Guardian, this time we see the beginnings of a angel’s rise. Born to parents who made a deal with God for a child, if even for only a short seven years, we watch young Cara grow not only in the mortal world, but in the next one as well. In Heaven she is given the name Sundance, and begins to learn her strengths and grow in skills to the point of being welcomed into another rank of Angels a “Warrior”, one of the first in a very long time.

But for all her skills and abilities, which have impressed even the Archangels, she still has much to learn. Her first assignment will take her back to Earth where she will experience not only pain, but love with a mortal. Is such a thing allowed?

You’ll have to read to find out the answers to that. But there is much more awaiting both the reader and Sundance. For her powers and skills have been noticed not only by higher authorities, but ones below as well. And soon she finds herself the focal point in a dastardly plot from the netherworld.

The author has done a brilliant job with this book in many respects, including uniting both her first and second books with a brief, but satisfying meeting between our former Soul Taker, and this new Warrior Angel. I very much look forward to more of this series which is just beginning.

Currently, the book can be purchased here:

Amazon Ebook US
Amazon Paperback US
Amazon Ebook UK
Amazon Paperback UK
Amazon Ebook DE
Amazon Paperback DE
Smashwords

Sundance Release Day – Wonderful News And My First 5-Star Review

Today, right on my ‘Sundance’ release day, I got the most amazing news!

#1

Even though I was told the paperback wouldn’t be published until Tuesday, it was published today early evening. (Unfortunately, even though I linked the two books, the ebook and paperback currently still separated.)

If you prefer to read paperbacks over ebooks, here it is:

SUNDANCE – AMAZON PAPERBACK


#2

The Paranormal Romance Guild will publish a ‘Release Giveaway’ for ‘Sundance’ running from August 18 through August 24, 2019. I’m very excited about that!

August 18, 2019 you will find the Giveaway on the website of the Paranormal Romance Guild: https://www.paranormalromanceguild.com/

I will send out reminders for the Giveaway in due time.

The Paranormal Romance Guild is a very supportive writer’s guild, offering services (critique, beta-readers, reviews, blog), help, support and advice for their members.  They offer three membership levels: Reader = free, Premium 1 yr. Premium 2 yrs. The services are available for free for the Premium members. You might consider becoming a member. https://www.paranormalromanceguild.com/register/

Currently, the PRG runs a Fall & Winter Holidays WIP contest. All writers can participate, members as well as non-members. Read more about here: https://www.paranormalromanceguild.com/wip-contest19/


#3

Sundance got its first 5-star review! This is so exciting I’m enthusiastic!

“wonderful”

REVIEWED BY: LINDA TONIS
MEMBER OF THE PARANORMAL ROMANCE REVIEW TEAM
When Cara’s parents begged and prayed for a child they were given a daughter but they had to make a deal, the child was on loan for only seven years at which time she would be taken away. Cara’s parents revealed everything to Cara just before her seventh birthday and when she turned seven she woke up in the School of Divine Army with Archangel Michael as her teacher. Her eleventh and final year she was an angel warrior the first in nearly three hundred years. Six years later she took her final exams and became a warrior master ready to fight evil and be given a name. Since she loved to dance in the sun her name was Sundance.

Her first assignment was at a castle in Germany where seven warriors lived and where someone in the castle was a spy trying to pull the warriors down to the dark side. The warriors were human but assisted time and again helping the angels in their fight against the monsters from Hell. Unfortunately when Sundance arrived is was to be greeted by demons who attacked her and managed to poison her with their blood. She was saved by one of the seven warriors, Anaan and from the minute he brought her back to the castle and to his room he wouldn’t let her out of his sight. He carried her anywhere she had to go and they fell in love. Their relationship was platonic but very real.

Sundance went on missions and trained and returned to Anaan whenever possible and then she discovered that he was taken to Hell and tortured and she knew she had to help him. What she found when she saw him was a man she loved but who was unrecognizable, bleeding, tied to the bed in his room that he had trashed and when she touched him she knew that there was still a demon residing inside him. What happens to him is something you will have to find out for yourself.

Sundance begins to display powers that surprise even the oldest, most powerful archangels and she is brought before the Council of Twelve. She was convinced that she was there to be punished but that was not so, she was rewarded and given more powers. The Council knew about her falling in love with a human and had no problem with it but eventually Anaan would need more than what she could give him.

Sundance was an amazing character and fought time and again against evil until one fight was one fight too many. As an angel she didn’t die but what happened I will not reveal. The book ends with a cliffhanger with a lot of unfinished business and a lot of unanswered questions but in spite of that and the fact that the book ended with “To Be Continued” I still loved it.

Currently, the book can be purchased here:

Amazon Ebook US

Amazon Paperback US

Amazon Ebook UK

Amazon Paperback UK

Amazon Ebook DE

Amazon Paperback DE

Smashwords

Sundance Release

IT’S RELEASE DAY!

GET YOUR COPY OF:

SUNDANCE

2nd book of ‘The Council Of Twelve’ Series


Time to watch the trailer:

 

Sundance is a promising young Warrior Angel, the first in centuries to join the Divine Army. With the help of one of the most powerful Archangels, her skill and talent develop, allowing her to master some of the most difficult tasks that face her kind.

Sundance, under the supervision of the ‘Council of Twelve’ seeks to prove that she deserves her unusual gifts in the eternal fight between good and evil.

Follow her adventures as she discovers love, fights the good fight, and finds herself in the heat of battle trying to keep her wings from being singed.


 



Buyer’s Links:

Amazon Ebook US

Amazon Ebook UK

Amazon Ebook DE

Smashwords

 

 

 


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Author Spotlight Phyllis Campbell

Welcome!

1. When did you start writing?

I won a short story contest when I was eleven.

 

2. What motivates you to write?

Several things motivate me to write. I write two bi-monthly columns for National Braille Press, and a monthly for the Blind Post. For these, I’m motivated to offer information. For fiction, many things influence me, an item in the news, a happening in the community, or in my own world. I try to keep a list of things that strike my interest.

 

3. What genre do you write in and what made you chose this particular genre?

My short pieces have ranged from romance to The Virginia Psychiatric Journal. My books have included my memoir, a mystery, Young Adult Inspirational, supernatural, and Christian (family) I think of a plot, and if I keep thinking about it, I write. As with what motivates me described earlier, many things may influence my choice of plot. For instance, some years ago, I was doing a short piece on the lot of women in the 1800s. At dinner, I wondered what it must have been for blind women, especially those who had ambition. “Like you,” a friend said. “They probably did even stay dead,” he further commented. “Out of the Night” supernatural was born.

 

4. What is your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you?

I think we all secretly want a bestseller, but I would be content with steady sales, bringing a reasonable income, and that perhaps, leave something meaningful with the readers.

 

5. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it?

I seldom suffer from that dread condition. My husband has been dead for almost six years, but I can still hear him saying, “Leave it alone for a while. It will come.” I do, and it does.

6. What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?

Try to start small. Unless you’re a JK Rowling, likely you won’t have an immediate bestseller. Be happy with that small sale, more likely small sales. Get a feel for the market, and raise the bar. Study the markets, and follow guidelines carefully. They may seem silly to us, but they’re what the editors want, and there are plenty of writers out there, who don’t care how silly they sound. Look carefully at your dreams. Be sure they are practical, and go for them. Try not to get discouraged. Look at your work, just to be sure that you haven’t missed something important. Pick yourself up, and try again.

 

7. Please, tell us about your work.

As I stated earlier, I write in many genre. If it interests me, I write about it. I have written six books, published by both traditional and self-publishers. My latest book is “Where Sheep May Safely graze” Westbow Press, available from
http://www.amazon.com/author/psc-books-all
available both in print and digital formats.
You will find a listing of my books there, along with the link to purchase. I have also written a true-crime book under contract with the family of the victim, rights belonging to them.

Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!


About Phyllis:

Phyllis Staton Campbell, who was born blind, writes about the world she knows best. She calls on her experience as teacher of the blind, peer counselor and youth transition coordinator. She says that she lives the lives of her characters: lives of sorrow and joy; triumph and failure; hope and despair. That she and her characters sometimes see the world in a different way, adds depth to the story. She sees color in the warmth of the sun on her face, the smell of rain, the call of a cardinal, and God, in a rainbow of love and grace.
Although she was born in Amherst County, Virginia, she has lived most of her life in Staunton, Virginia, where she serves as organist at historic Faith Lutheran church, not far from the home she shared with her husband, Chuck, who waits beyond that door called death.


Connect with Phyllis:

Emails: Pcampbell16@verizon.net 
campbellphyllis17@gmail.com

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Phyllis-Campbell/e/B001KC40ZI/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/Phyllis-Staton-Campbell-361675114286715/


Books by Phyllis Campbell:

Where Sheep May Safely Graze

Customer Review
5.0 out of 5 Where Sheep May Safely Graze This book was wonderful. It held my attention from the first page …
ByAFBon February 24, 2018
This book was wonderful. It held my attention from the first page until the end and I did not want it to end. I hope a second book will be forth coming. Kudos to you Phyllis for the best book I have read in a long time.

Other books by Phyllis Campbell…

COME HOME MY HEART, 1985.
REPRINTED IN 2001

 

 

 

 

 

FRIENDSHIPS IN THE DARK, 1996 Reprint 1997

 

 

 

 

 

The Evil Men Do 2006, true crime, written under contract for the family of the victim.

A Place To Belong August, 2012

 

 

 

 

 

Who Will hear Them Cry, April, 2012

 

 

 

 

 

Out of the Night February, 2014