I’ve been writing since I was 8 years old. So it may come as no surprise that I think the best writers of children’s books are kids themselves. That’s why I want to share some of my writing tips for kids. These tips are great for any child who enjoys writing, or who even wants to start writing their own book one day.
Writing Tip #1: Always Be Brainstorming
Look for ideas in your everyday life. These can be interesting people you meet, a joke or quote from a friend, or even things that happen at school. The idea for The Kingdom of the Lizards came from seeing kids at my school in Florida ‘playing’ with lizards and catching these animals for fun.
I like to carry a small notebook to jot ideas down as I get them. Once you have a running brainstorming list then you can expand on the ideas that stick out to you or even combine a few thoughts to create a new story. These blended genres like the Harry Potter books can be really fun to write for kids and make for an engaging book for readers.
Writing Tip #2: Make the Story Sensible
Writing allows kids to be really creative, but you still have to think of how to make your story make sense.
Even a fantasy story should be reasonable. You can still use your great imagination, but you have to follow-up if your storyline is going the way it should be. For example, if you write that there is one blue car in the driveway and a couple sentences later you say there is one green car in the driveway it just wouldn't have complete sense. So I advise all those writers out there to look out for a reason of sense in your writing.
As you write, take breaks to reread sections to make sure that it still makes sense and that each sentence moves the action forward. If something is there that doesn’t fit change it or remove it. And if you have extra sentences that don’t describe a character or an important story detail, then remove it completely. After you make changes, read the sections again to make sure that it is reasonable and it flows together.
Writing Tip #3: Stick to a Schedule
The third tip I have is to schedule time for your writing. For young authors, I think 30 minutes to an hour a few times a week is perfect to stay on track with your book. When you're not spending time wisely your deadline is going to increase.
The best way to have a beautiful book is to spend more of your valuable time just on this subject. Turn off any electronics that may distract you during your writing and just go in the zone of literature.
Writing Tip #4: Read!
It may sound strange, but reading can be a helpful writing tip for kids; you can learn a lot from a well-written book. Your favorite stories could give elements of a new tale to write.
It can also be inspiring to read other great works and know that you can create something wonderful as well. So read and read a lot and think about what you liked about what you read. Trust me, you’ll grow as a writer this way.
Writing Tip #5: Stay True to Yourself
Always write what you most desire. As much as you may want to please your readers, if you write something you don’t care about then your heart won’t be in it. Finding your voice at a young age is one of my top writing tips for other kids.
Don't listen to anyone telling you that you should not write in this genre write in another. Just write what you love and love what you write! Aim to write a book that you’d want to read over and over again, then you’ll find readers who love your work just as much.
Katrina Kusa is the teen author of the award-winning children’s book The Kingdom of the Lizards. This young author wants to inspire other kids to write and achieve their dream of being published one day. Learn more about this talented, young author.