Tag Archives: children’s books

The Journey Begins

Following several rides on The Giant Drop, I took a rather giddy step back. It felt as though the manuscripts I’d submitted were starting to turn on me. ‘Oh, you think we’re so good. You think you’ll be turning publishers away with all the attention we’ll bring. You think your books will be up in literary lights… think again! We’re nothing, but wish-wash! You’ll never have your name on a book if we’re all you have to offer!’

Ah, the old seed of self-doubt, angrily sprouting away. Wondrous, isn’t it?!

I needed to view the bigger picture. As difficult as it was, I decided to put those pesky manuscripts aside and start something fresh. My morale yearned for it. In early 2014, I created a character; a curious, young boy on a quest to problem-solve, using his active imagination. I had hopes of turning his adventures into a picture book series. I drafted the first story and within a few months of daily rewrites and edits, he was ready. I knew it this time. This little guy was not going turn on me!

I submitted my manuscript to Kids’ Book Review for assessment and was delighted with the feedback. My idea was unique, entertaining and picture-book-appropriate. The one thing letting it down was that I had written the story in rhyme and the meter was inconsistent in most parts. The irony of a musician failing to write rhythmically, but I later realised my struggle may be because there’s no musical accompaniment in a book! No instrumentation to fill gaps and complete phrases.

Although there were many positives to my creation, the manuscript still needed work.

A highly experienced and professional author and editor, from the KBR team, saw promise in the story idea and my approach to improving it, and offered her services to work with me. How grateful I was, to have her knowledge and expertise helping my story (and me as a writer)! I’m thankful every day, for this experience.

Seeing my story take much better shape, I decided there were to be no ‘giant drops’ with this one. I knew it shone and my editor agreed. I showed the complete manuscript to fellow creatives and they also agreed. All signs were pointing the same way, urging me to transform this story to book. Following thorough research, I decided to self-publish. A 100% guarantee that my work would see the light of day and 100% creative control over its publication. I like having control. Some say, I need it. I’m relieved and thankful that I followed those signs because it was the beginning of a long and wonderfully rewarding (and challenging!) journey.

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Catch you next month for the next leg. 🙂

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Filed under Author Business, Book News, Publishing Tips, Renee Price

A Happy Place

What brought you to writing? Has it been a life-long dream to see your stories in print? Is it a fresh career change? A creative path you’ve been encouraged to follow?

Since a young age, I’ve had the desire to create. From stories to songs, poems to plays, writing was my escape; my ‘happy place’. 🙂

As an adult, my escape became a little distant. Life got in the way – I’m sure we can all relate. My love for writing remained, but ideas lacked, and creating was rarely executed. I didn’t realise how much this affected me, until after the birth of my first child.

Parenthood is certainly an eye-opener, and in more ways than one! You can tell yourself you’re prepared, and in some respect, this is possible, but the perceived emotional and physical readiness falls about fifty football fields short of the reality that tiny bundle of joy brings.

I’m not going to lie, I struggled. Whether it was the delayed recovery from childbirth, the additional physical needs my son required, or simply the loss of sleep I once thought I could survive without, things quickly mounted, and I wasn’t coping.

After several visits to a counsellor, I began finding myself again, and enjoying my little one, rather than living in fear. At night, I would sit in a rocking chair in his room, telling him stories and singing songs, until he fell asleep. It brought peace to us both.

One night, I remember becoming overwhelmed with emotion. The bond we shared and the effect of my words, voice and embrace, brought immeasurable comfort. This was now my happy place.

That night, I started writing again. The piece was titled, One of a Kind. It reflected my thoughts on difference and uniqueness, and that if we accept ourselves and all our quirky traits, we can find true contentment. I wrote this piece for me, but more importantly, I wrote it for my son.

And I haven’t looked back.

Image for JWFK Aug blog postRenee x
#JustWriteForKidsOZ

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You have the right to see your words in print!

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There has never been a better time to be you, an aspiring writer happily pursuing the ultimate goal – a published book! It rolls off the tongue (or rather, rolls off the keyboard) yet it is, in reality, true. The world is yours – now go and get it.

10 steps to publication – guaranteed!

How can I make such a bold assertion? I can because it is true! You are just as justified in your pursuit of publication as the person next to you, as Stephen King or JK Rowling. Your words and ideas are important. There is no such thing as a bad book – it is merely some books are more popular and resonate with a larger audience than other books. If you are creating a book for your son or daughter or grandchild, it will be treasured. It may not warrant being reproduced in its thousands as such a personal gift – but it can be PUBLISHED!

If you are creating a book because it really is your calling to do this and you will continue to support yourself and your family as a writer – it can be PUBLISHED!

What is so glorious about today is these pathways are open, available and waiting for you… now get cracking! Each week I will share one of these magical steps. Like I say to the kids working with me in the Child Writes program, eating an elephant is easy – if you take one mouthful at a time 🙂

 

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Filed under Emma Mactaggart, Writing Tips