Guest Posts

Guest Post: Notes from an Editor

Want to become a better writer? Ever wonder what editors look for? Want to know how to proofread your own work? Here are some items to check before you send it to your editor:

anonymous female using laptop and taking notes on street
Photo by Keira Burton on Pexels.com

5 Things I LOVE to See in Writing

  1. Story Flow. Keep it going! This may sound simple, but sometimes you can be writing and not realize that you’ve gotten sidetracked. When you read through your finished product, make sure everything flows smoothly and is connected to the plot. If something causes your mind to wander from the story line, change it or take it out. If your story wanders, so will the minds of your readers. Keep it tight.
  2. Varied Sentence Length. You’re a writer! Make use of that. Variety adds interest. If you have too many short sentences strung together, your story will seem choppy. Or, if you have too many long sentences, it can seem long-winded. Be kind to your reader and vary the length to keep them engaged.
  3. Imagery. Similes and metaphors are powerful tools that can add depth and complexity to you work. But there are a few cautions: they shouldn’t be overused, they need make to make sense, and they can’t derail the story.
  4. Commas, Commas, Commas! I think these are the forgotten piece of grammar. Independent clauses need commas, but dependent clauses DO NOT.

    The easiest way to decide if you need a comma after your “and” is to ask yourself, “Can this phrase before the ‘and’ be a sentence all by itself (independent clause)?” If the answer is “yes,” give it a comma.

    Also, when reading your writing out loud and there is a pause needed, put a comma.
  5. Active Voice. Your story is much more alive and flows when written in the active voice. It makes your writing stronger, more direct, and more interesting to readers.
black and red typewriter
Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on Pexels.com

5 Things I HATE to See in Writing

(more…)

Guest Post: Starting Your Children’s Book

By Author Ellwyn Autumn

person reading a book
Photo by Lina Kivaka on Pexels.com

Getting Started

So, you want to write and self-publish a children’s book? Good for you! You’re just itching to transcribe your idea to the page. But there’s one obstacle, you don’t know where to start. Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered.

First things first, write your idea whichever way is most comfortable for you: a list, a word web, notes. It doesn’t matter, just get it out before you forget.

I suggest going to the source after you’ve written it down. What does that mean? Read children’s books. Go to the library and check out a few. Take notes on what you like and dislike about the books.

You might also want to look at my article ‘4 Elements Good Picture Books Need’.

Many people think creating a children’s book is easy. Let me tell you from experience, it isn’t. It’s fun, it’s fulfilling, but easy is not a word I’d use to explain the process.

Finding Support & Inspiration

(more…)