March was officially Reading for Research Month for kidlit writers. Carrie Charley Brown hosted this event online by inviting writers and illustrators to band together and learn more about writing picture books by studying common themes in currently published books. The purpose of the event was to increase our common knowledge by sharing individual knowledge. And did we ever have some awesome individuals sharing what they have learned for the good of the group! Take a look at our daily schedule of guest author-educators…
These wonderful individuals shared recommendations for picture books that we could use as mentor texts to help us better understand such topics as diversity, plot, character, story arc, rhyme, hooks, and humor. As participants, our responsibility was to find and read as many of these titles and absorb as much genius as we could from each text.
There were a multitude of prizes offered by Carrie and the other author-educators. A quick glance at the prizes include manuscript critiques, autographed picture books, e-books, phone consultations, and registration to online writing courses. But the most important prize is the experience of participating. Every participant won a prize equal to the amount of work they put into the course. From what I’ve heard from other participants there were a lot of winners in that respect!
In addition to my participation, I was also lucky enough to win one of the other prizes as well! Ta-Da! I will soon be receiving a personalized writing journal homemade by the talented Suzy Leopold. Here’s a quick look at how she makes these in case you want to make your own Personalized Journal.
I’ll be filling mine with all kinds of super secret story ideas. Maybe when I’m published I’ll show you my journal!