One of the best things about putting my ‘Children’s Author’ dream out there has been that many people have come up to me and said that they too have thought about or even begun writing for kids – hooray! The more the merrier. When I started I knew no one and didn’t know where to go with my questions. Over the last few years I have learnt so much and even though I’m no expert, I can certainly answer a few common questions that will help a beginner navigate their way into this industry. Remember, this is my experience, things that have worked for me so far, there are no set rules on how to make it and all information here is my opinion only.
Once I started writing this I realised it was too much info for one post, so I’ve split it into two parts.
Pt 1. Courses & Facebook Groups
What courses are out there?
There are loads of courses both online and *gasp* ‘real life!’
I completed the The Australian Writers’ Centre, ‘Writing Picture Books Course’. It was a 2-day course at the Abbotsford Convent and I can highly recommend it. It will provide you with all the foundations for writing PB’s.
If you are after something that lasts a little longer – or forever – I can also highly recommend Scribbles, which is a creative writing online course. There’s a private Facebook group for members and the course just keeps on evolving, which is amazing! It covers all genres and is also for illustrators. I really can’t do it justice, so if you’re interested check out the details via this link! Intake is now twice a year and payment plans are available.
These are just two options, there are loads of great courses out there so find one that suits your needs. Do your research and also ask your Facebook groups which courses they’ve found helpful. Which brings me to my next question…
Which Facebook groups are helpful?
Just Write For Kids was the first group I joined. It’s a place to talk all things KidLit with both aspiring and published authors. Feel free to ask all the questions – everyone here is so lovely and helpful.
Creative Kids Tales Network is run by author, Georgie Donaghey, whose purpose is to help authors on their KidLit journey. The Facebook group is a place to chat about the writing process, new book releases, and really anything KidLit related. You can pay a small fee to have a profile on the CKT website and access to a critique group (more on that later). Also, the website is packed with resources, tips and services so be sure to check it out here.
Share Your Story is run by Author/Mumpreneur, Michelle Worthington, and it is a fantastic resource. Michelle works tirelessly to “educate, empower and engage aspiring creatives to achieve their goals of publishing books, building a brand and making money doing what they love.” Here you will find loads of helpful videos and articles as well as information on accessing webinars, workshops and even mentorships.
The Duck Pond. This is run by Author, Jen Storer, and it is a very special place. All members must subscribe to The Girl and Duck email list to join (don’t worry you won’t get spammed), and here you will find a whole lot of ‘Duckies’ – authors and illustrators who are quacking mad about writing for kids!
Can you recommend any podcasts?
Why, yes I can! Podcasts are fantastic way to keep on top of what is happening in the industry and to learn from the professionals.
Here are some that I am really enjoying at the moment – add them to your playlist, pronto!
I’ve also been told to check out The KidLit Club podcast and So You Want To Be A Writer by the AWC (while not strictly KidLit their Magic and Mayhem section is.) I’ve added these my my ‘to-listen’ list!
This will keep you busy until I post Pt2. Getting Published.
If you have any questions, comments or suggestions please let me know on my Facebook post.
Until then, happy writing!