Post-PiBoIdMo Day 5: Tara Lazar is Out of Order

Writing for Kids (While Raising Them)

by Tara Lazar

When I first began writing picture books, I’d get hit with an idea—BAM! KAPOW!—and then immediately sit down and start banging it out.


NO. Just NO.

I didn’t stop to think—is this a good idea? Will it make a worthwhile story? I thought the idea would be my only flash and I had to grab it while it was glowing.

Now, I write the idea down. And then I PAUSE.

I let the idea sit in my brain for a while. I might not be actively thinking about it, but I know it’s in there, jiggling around. Bouncing off brain cells, colliding with other unused ideas.

picturebookwall Competition on the shelf.

After the initial incubation period, the first thing I consciously imagine is what might go on the cover. Will that cover stand out in the book store? Will a child make a beeline to my book? I…

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Author: ELJohnsen

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