Have you always dreamt of being a children's author? Or maybe you have been inspired by the children's books you have discovered whilst browsing in the book store for a child who is close to your heart? I spoke with Publicious author of children's book Trip to Greece, Melina Mallos, about her tips for writing for children. Melina, who was born and raised in Greece until the age of 6, is a high profile blogger and commentator on the subject of childhood intercultural understanding and appreciation for a number of years. She published her first bilingual children's picture book in 2015, titled Catch that Cat! Publicious published her second book, Trip to Greece, a few months ago!
Here is some advice for all those who are keen to explore the world of print on demand and Ebook distribution in the children's book sector. Once you have completed the hard part, which is creating the story, the rest is quite straight-forward. There are numerous options for affordable book publishing of children's books, and Publicious has published many children's book. We can assist with print on demand and Ebook distribution, Global Book and Ebook Distribution, Book cover designs, Manuscript assessments/copy editing/proofreading, Book typesetting service and also Book marketing/publicity.
Melina acknowledges that unfortunately, the majority of those who harbor these dreams fail to become a published author, simply because they don't know where to start.
"I believe that the first hurdle to jump is actually coming up with a great topic to write about one that is entertaining for children to read, but also carries a useful message," Melina advises.
According to Melina, it is always a good idea to determine what is topical and newsworthy at the time, and how this translates to the age bracket of your target audience.
"Themes that were of interest to parents 10 or 20 years ago may no longer be relevant. Technology changes the world we live in at such a fast rate, and children are getting savvy with devices younger, to the point where there are constantly new topics of concern arising for parents and educators," she says."Cyber bullying, terrorism, cultural acceptance, social media etiquette, even how the hours that children spend engaging with technology versus being physically active and spending time with family and peers, are all topics of interest in today's world. Prospective authors who are serious about being successful will take note what themes are relevant right now, as well as any obvious gaps in the children's book market and address them."
The next important point to note is the way that you communicate the theme in your book will depend on your targeted audience.
"If you are keen to create a picture book, take note that illustrations are crucial and must appeal to children below the age of 6. The nature of a picture book is to use illustration to assist the author to tell their unique story. The way the story is broken up by page-breaks can be utilised to create the drama, suspense and resolution for maximum impact."
When it comes to the story itself, Melina says that the 'heart' of the story or central message you'd like to share is the magic ingredient to a picture book that sells! Choose a suitable theme that will resonate with your readers and the experiences they are going through.
"Keep the message simple but use captivating, colourful characters, places or animals to communicate the message. Rather than simply 'telling' the child the message, let the character have an adventure, with the end result being the message that you want to share. Leave the reader feeling positive and uplifted."
However, older children could find more realistic characters interesting, and the message could be delivered in different ways. They can understand more complicated ideas, and your book should serve to open up conversation opportunities for parents to explore these topics in more detail with their children.
Melina encourages authors to allow your creativity to take them down different paths. There are many very successful concepts and stories that have been developed by authors over the years, such as the Harry Potter series, and many haven't yet been dreamt up.
"Don't be tempted to stick to the formulas and themes that have been replicated over decades, such as talking animal families. See whether your creativity can produce something original, and you, too, can make history as a prominent children's author."
Children's' Multicultural Educator and Consultant, Melina Mallos, recognises the importance of promoting intercultural understanding among children, as well as promoting a firm connection with and appreciation of their own original cultural heritage.
Trip to Greece is a colourful workbook with an interesting narrative in English, and Greek keywords to practise and learn. Each page offers multiple fun opportunities for your child to hear, speak, read and write Greek (activities vary on the child's age and language ability).Melina has also just finished creating an online course for those who want to become a children's author. It will be launched shortly check her website for updates!
For more info, visit http://www.melinamallos.com
|Tags: Andy McDermott / Director|