Why is it important to remember?

Why is it important to remember?

I’ve had a break from writing for a few days, but my imagination has been running wild! I’ve been revisiting some former manuscripts, including Jimmy James.

One of the comments I have received in the past has been:

Why would he go on his adventures? [Read more…]

At the beginning…

How to start the story…

Now that I know what I want the story to be like, I need to work out where it starts. As this is the first book, I was thinking that it could start before the first stop when he is first recruited into the good guys organisation, however I’m starting to think that this will give away too much unnecessary information.

As there will be three stops, the story could start at any of these three points, though the general consensus from the Chapter Book Challenge group seems to be that it should start before the first stop… [Read more…]

Good guys, bad guys…

Creating good guys, and bad guys

One of the suggestions my kids came up with was having some bad guys in the story, something last years book didn’t have. This is something that I’ve been working on. In order to have bad guys, I also needed some good guys. Jimmy James, my main character, is one of the good guys, so I needed to work out where he fit in the grand scheme of things, and then work out who the bad guys were going to be.

With this in mind, the whole structure of the story changed, as well as some of the things I wanted to do with it. [Read more…]

The power of three…

The power of three

I’ve recently started reading Writing Hannah by Libby Gleeson. I first discovered Libby Gleeson when Mum borrowed I Am Susannah from the library when I was in primary school when it was a fairly new book. So, I was excited to discover that she had written a book about writing for children.

When she is talking about planning the events for her book Hannah and the Tomorrow Room, she discusses the number of attempts Hannah makes to get rid of Grandpa and discusses having three events, each one building to the climax of the story. [Read more…]

Planning a chapter book

Planning a book

It’s Author Blog Challenge time again, and during March I’m joining in the Chapter Book Challenge once again. For the blog challenge, I’m going to take a leaf out of Ashley Howland’s blog and share my planning for the chapter book challenge.

During last years Chapter Book Challenge, I wrote a Jimmy James story. It was OK and got me in to writing chapter books, however it wasn’t the most brilliant piece of writing in the World. It had plenty of room for improvement. Since the challenge, I’ve been looking at the story and how to change it to make the story more exciting, but still have elements of the original aims for the series. [Read more…]

Designing a gadget – or two…

Asking kids to design gadgets?

Mr N has been bugging me to let him illustrate one of my stories. He’s not bad at art, some of the pieces he comes home with are stunning. I’ve framed some hand they are hanging in pride of place around the house, however I’m not sure he’s the right illustrator for my books…

I’m now at the stage where I need to describe some gadgets, ones that don’t exist. I’ve been trying to describe them, however they are not quite working for me. I know what I want the gadget to do, however I’m having issues explaining what it looks like. [Read more…]

When stories don’t quite go to plan…

Which way should it go?

I’ve been working on my chapter book lately, trying to work out how to develop the story. I’ve been working with a wonderful editor who is asking me a lot of questions to develop the story, making it longer and richer.

There have been some wonderful ideas I’ve been playing around with, the only problem being that many end up going away from my original idea! So I’ve been trying to work out which way to go with the story – do I revisit the original idea, or run with the new one without trying to make it fit the original idea? [Read more…]

Jimmy James at the AFL/VFL

Getting back to writing…

My kids have been bugging me this school holidays – they want me to hurry up and get my Jimmy James books published! I don’t know if this means they are bored and want something to read, or something else… but they promised that this afternoon they would go off and play and leave me to write. Too good an offer not to take up.

So, I’m sitting here with a cup of tea, lollies from my show bag and my laptop trying to get some work done.

[Read more…]

How long do socks last?

How long do socks last?

I’m doing some editing of my Jimmy James stories. I’ve come across an interesting issue.

How long do socks last in your house before you have to throw them out?

In our house, it seems I’m constantly throwing out socks that have holes in them! Most surprisingly, my boys seem to be happy to wear them with holes, even holes so big that their toes poke through. Not just one toe, but all five toes….

[Read more…]

Day 5: Prepare

Day 5: Prepare

It’s Day 5 of the Mastering the Habits of Great Writers challenge. The challenge today is to ship it. You can read the full challenge here.

The good news here is this is exactly what I’ve been doing this week – shipping out my drafts for feedback. The next step is making changes to my manuscripts and then shipping them out again.

[Read more…]

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