writemindedness

Connect mind and heart through writing.

Archive for the month “June, 2014”

The Pictures in My Book

I revised text to match submission specifications and was sure my imagery would propel readers through a boyish adventure.  While waiting for editors to recognize my shining example of literacy, I decided to request candid critiques from the toughest of judges – children.  A visual arts teacher and I tossed around some ideas for adolescent illustrators, until she caught one that would work.  Her students read the text, selected a verse that spoke to them, then pulled out the pictures.  Would they see the images I had tucked into my words?

In a couple of weeks, I received pictures of squirrels, jet planes, mud puddles, and wind. However the stroller, the element that lent levity and heightened the level of adventure, was absent.  After another read through I realized I had kept the stroller in my head instead of releasing it to the page.  I’ve corrected the omission, the story is now stronger, and submissions should supply a more favorable outcome.

My lesson learned:  Before submitting picture books, ask a range of readers to draw what the text reveals.

 

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