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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

This program has been canceled. Ticket holders will be notified about credit and/or refund options.

How To Write Children's Books

All-Day Program with Hands-on Workshop

Saturday, June 13, 2020 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Code: 1H0515
$90 - Member
$140 - Non-Member

What makes a children’s book a children’s book? And how can adults successfully write for a young audience? Peter Rabbit, Peter Pan, Pippi Longstocking, Watership Down, and Alice in Wonderland all started out as stories their authors devised to entertain children they knew—which might offer a good starting point for your own writing.

Whether you aspire to write professionally or want to learn how to craft captivating stories for the young readers in your life, this seminar led by author and scholar Lisa Rowe Fraustino gets you started on the journey of creating a children’s book—and gives you the tools to finish it when you go home.

9:30–10:45 a.m.  A Writerly Tour Through Children’s Literature

What are the genres and forms of children’s literature into which your story might fit? The answers help you shape your ideas.

11 a.m.–12:15 p.m.  Mining the Mother Lode of Story

This creative session takes you back to your childhood encounters with stories to help identify the optimal themes and forms for your work.

12:15–1:15 p.mLunch (participants provide their own)

1:15–2:30 p.m.  Writing From a Child’s Perspective

The main element that distinguishes children’s from adult literature is its focus on a child’s level of perception and development. Guided exercises in narrative viewpoint deepen your understanding of writing from a child’s point of view.

2:45–4 p.m.  Making a Scene

The best children’s stories have active plots comprised of scenes that dramatize the conflict. End the day by practicing techniques to keep your characters moving.