Tuesday, 3 January 2017

BONUS CHALLENGE: The 52-Week Picture Book Challenge

http://illo52weeks.blogspot.com/2017/01/bonus-challenge-52-week-picture-book.html
image: Tania McCartney


So many of our 52-Week Illustration Challenge members have a thing for children's books. Challenge Founder, Tania McCartney, is a children's book author/illustrator with a deep picture book obsession. Nicky Johnston, Challenge Director, is also an author/illustrator and picture book aficionado. And many of our Challenge admin team are either creating picture books, or want to.

Sarah Wallace from Kids' Book Review (also founded by Tania), recently contacted Tania about participating in the 52-Week Illustration Challenge, but creating a picture book text to each theme, rather than imagery.

Tania LOVED the idea. And so this 2017 bonus challenge has been born.

For the duration of 2017, we are offering this bonus picture book text challenge to members with the hashtag:

#52WPB

Here's how it will work.

Participants will follow along the Challenge themes for 2017, and instead of (or along with!) creating an image every week, they can write a picture book text (no more than 500 words) to that theme.

When the text has been written, they post to the wall with the following post text (no image required):

#52WPB
Week 1: WHIMSY
Picture Book Title Goes Here
xxx words
Short story outline (synopsis), up to 50 words max

Please note: the picture book text is NOT to be posted to the wall. It's for your own personal collection/cache. If you would one day develop the text and send it in for publication, it cannot have been published elsewhere, including online.

Both Text and Image?

If participants want to, they can also post artwork in this post--if they've done imagery to go with their text. In that case, you would have the following post text to accompany your image:

Week 1: WHIMSY
Watercolour and ink
#52WPB
Picture Book Title Goes Here
xxx words
Short story outline (synopsis), up to 50 words max

Strive for ideas not perfection

Writing great picture books is a process that takes many years of dedicated practice. If you are serious about becoming a picture book creator, writing 52 manuscripts in a year would exponentially fast-track your writing journey.

The manuscripts for this Challenge don't need to be perfect--in fact, they should not be. They should be streams-of-consciousness, and basic rough drafts and outlines are perfectly fine, so long as you actually just WRITE something. 500 words is not a lot, and can easily be achieved in one week (and finished picture books can have as few as 150 words ... or even NO words!). Then, down the track, you can expand on ideas that stand out and inspire you the most.

These manuscripts are for your eyes only, to be kept and filed by you. Every word you pen during this journey is part of your creation process, honing and perfecting your skills. Practice absolutely does make perfect, and we expect some pretty impressive picture book manuscripts by the end of this year!

Throughout 2017, we will do blog posts with PB writing tips, and at the end of the year, a post encouraging you to submit your works to publishers, along with tips on how to do this. So keep your eyes peeled for those!

We hope you'll join in! And don't forget to let admin know if and when one of your creations is eventually published.

Challenge Themes for 2017


6 comments:

  1. What an awesome idea! I love it! The last time I wrote a children's picture book I was a child myself. Perhaps it is time to give it another go. :-)

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  2. A year ago, or so, a writing colleague challenged me to try writing one picture book manuscript per month. She was insistent they I always get to the end each time. (Many people practise beginnings and middles, but not too many get to practise good endings.) I did write about five manuscripts in 2016, and each of those is now on a continuum of "getting ready to show a Beta reader".

    But 52? Okay, I'm game! Thanks Tania & Sarah. Roll on 2017!

    Regards, Ian McLean.

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  3. To clarify...we just submit the 50 word or less outline on site, but not the completed text?

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  4. Yes, that's right Anita. 'Please note: the picture book text is NOT to be posted to the wall.'

    ReplyDelete