Posted by Janice D. Green on Sep 4th, 2012 | 9 comments
Children’s Writers Look to Experts
By Janice Green
I can remember my first attempt at writing a story. I was so proud of it, mostly because I had written it myself. It wasn’t all that great, in fact it totally stunk. It had no plot. I just kept thinking up more words to make it long enough to qualify for the contest I hoped to win. I showed it to my dad who gave me an honest evaluation, and I didn’t submit it. I’m sure the people who were holding the contest didn’t miss it either.
I’m glad my interest in writing stayed alive. Sometimes I get excited about an idea and start writing away with great zeal thinking, “Wow! This is it! I have arrived with something great!”
I almost sent my recent self-published book, The First Christmas, to the printers prematurely. But a last-minute (Holy Spirit?) nudging prompted me to send it to a critique group I had nearly overlooked. One of them wrote back right away and told me I needed to re-write the whole story. At first I was offended, but because I truly value her input I read her suggestions carefully. I swallowed my pride and began re-writing, and again submitted it to the same critique group. I definitely came out with a much better book.
Finding good critique groups is not easy, but it is well worth the time and effort. Don’t give up if one critique group does not hold up and you have to start over. A good writer is dependent on good critiques.
In the mean time, there are other experts available to us as writers at the click of a mouse. The first expert that comes to my mind is Cecil Murphey. He has a wonderful blog, Writer to Writer: Lessons learned from a lifetime of writing.
Cecil is currently blogging a series of 21 lessons on the topic “Writing Articles.” But that accounts for only 21 of almost 300 posts he has made since January of 2010, that are jam-packed with tips for writers.
Even those who can’t find critique partners or who can’t afford to go to conferences can learn from this generous man and others like him who share from their hearts.
Not only does Cecil Murphey freely share his writing expertise on his blog, he provides scholarships for various Christian writer’s conferences such as Write2Ignite! so writers can learn from many experts. I have attended more than one Christian writing conference through his generous scholarships. Thank you, Cecil.
Oh! and BTW, I heard a rumor that he just might show up at Write2Ignite! 2013.
Now THAT will be a great opportunity to get some expert advice.