Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A Great Read for All Picture Book Writers

On Sunday, I am attending a NJ SCBWI Mentoring Workshop. We each get 20 minutes with an editor or an agent. (I can't wait to see what my mentor says about my Pigs story!) We also get placed in a group with seven others writers. All participants email their stories to their group beforehand so we can read and critique each manuscript. My group contains quite a range of writers, from those who I would publish on the spot to those who don't seem to have any understanding of story structure.

In an effort to help those who seem clueless, I went searching for a good article on picture book structure. And I came across this interesting interview of Eve Heidi Bine-Stock. I found it particularly valuable when Eve diagrams basic PB structure or what she refers to as the Symmetrical Paradigm.

Take a look at the whole interview for a lot more useful information!


Casey Something said...

That's pretty much the same structure I use for my novels! I suppose it makes sense that it applies just as well to a smaller story.

Hope you get great feedback from your mentor!

Kelly H-Y said...

Hope your Mentoring Workshop is filled with great feedback ... i.e. an exorbitant amount of praise for your Pigs story (and a contract offered on the spot)!! :-)

Corey Schwartz said...

Thanks, that would be AWEESOME!

Rebecca Gomez said...

This is interesting. But I find that diagrams seem to clog up my creative pathways!

Good luck at the workshop!

PurpleClover said...

Thanks! That is awesome!

By the way, I've come up with a couple ideas. What do you think:

boy finds egg, nurtures egg, learns to take care of it, wants to name his "bird"...finds out its an alligator...instead he takes the baby alligator to zoo? (has this been done a lot?)

next one:

girl has to go to grammas to visit but doesn't want to go cause she smells "old" and there are no cool toys...but then mom takes a call and gramma tells her something really cool and girl finds out gramma is full of great stories...can't wait to visit again?

next one:

a "survival guide" for kids. What do you do if you get lost? What do you do if you get stuck in a tree? What do you do if you smell smoke. What to do if there is a big dog running toward you? etc, etc.

I admit they probably aren't the best...but I'm still thinking!

K said...

Oh, I can't wait to hear about your SCBWI workshop! Please write to tell us how it goes for you with the mentor. Thanks for the information about the diagram of PBs, too.

Corey Schwartz said...

Wow, Purple, you are really full of ideas! Maybe we should try a collaboration some time?

PurpleClover said...

Anytime Corey! I'd be honored!

Ideas probably come a bit easier for me...it's the execution I have the problem with...you can probably help in that aspect!

Just tell me when...

PurpleClover said...

Knucklehead club:

All the little kids that are picked on by the two bully's in school start a club and call it the Knucklehead club because they all get "noogies" on a regular basis. So they decide to start a revolt against the bully's just to find out that the bully's want to be in the club too...

the whole bully beats up kid, kid stands up for himself, bully and kid become friends is kind of overdone but maybe if you put a new spin? yes/no? lol. the ideas are coming slower and slower now.

ooh wait! How about the Knucklehead club is boys that get together to buy equipment for an old abandoned baseball diamond so they can start a team...they mow lawns, deliver newspapers, etc until they can buy equipment...and start a league...it catches on and so forth. Although it sounds more middle grade.

hmm...okay i'll keep thinking.

BookChook said...

I have all the Bine-Stock books. They are very different to most others on the market, and it's fascinating to see books I know run through her paradigm.

Looking forward to hearing about SCBWI - Go PIGS!

Anonymous said...

You have a grandma story idea already! Write it!

Good luck with the mentoring workshop. But you don't need it. I just know it will go well for you!

Shelli (srjohannes) said...

cant wait to hear about the pigs too! let me know.