Today is Picture Book Wednesday and I wanted to share a real treasure that appeared on the fabulous Julie Hedlund’s website (I shared her great “How I Got an Agent Series” in my March 21 post “Agents for Picture Book Writers.”)
“Does Your Picture Book Premise Have Power?” (link below) was put together by award-winning author Jean Reidy, whose generosity with her expertise and talent knows no bounds.
Of course I loved #4 “Can it be summarized in one or two sentences?” since I’ve talked quite a bit about that in my posts and it’s a big deal to me. Not only as a way to present my story to others, but as a guide for writing my story. (See Jumpstart #4: Know What Your Story is About, and Marketing Tip: Why Should They Buy My Book? (part I and part II).
And it ties perfectly into #5 about having a hook because after you’ve identified the high concept aspect of your story (if it has one), you’d better be able to describe it in 1-2 sentences in a fun and intriguing way. It’s those sentences that make someone say, “I have to have that book!”
(By the way, it really helps to memorize your summary after you’ve perfected it. I was caught off guard a few times this past weekend at Big Sur in the Rockies when someone asked what I was working on and my ancient pea brain could only recall a few words here and there from my summaries. Embarrassing!)
Using Jean’s list of Power Premise Questions with my own picture book manuscripts has me rethinking a few of them…revision is definitely in my future.
Enjoy Does Your Picture Book Premise Have Power? and also get Jean’s “12 Reasons to Keep 12 Picture Books Percolating.” Thanks, Jean and Julie!