I recently decided to take a little break from my current Mid Grade WIP to work on a new idea. My new project is an early chapter book and I love, love, love, the idea so I decided to jump in with both feet.
Not quite an easy-to-read story and not nearly as difficult as a mid-grade chapter book, early chapter books provide an all important step in helping young readers become more independent.
Barbara Seuling in her book How to Write a Children’s Book and Get it Published states that early chapter books share these characteristics:
- Meatier stories- A step up from easy readers, but not quite as complex as a mid-grade novel
- Shorter chapters- Gives the child a sense of accomplishment
- Use everyday experiences for the basis of the stories
- Adults play a significant role in the life of the hero or heroine
- Read several early chapter books- What is the idea that the story is based on? Who are the characters? What situations would a base a story on for seven to ten year olds?
- Choose one of the books you have read in step 1 and write a one sentence summary for each chapter. This will help you to see how the book it plotted and developed.
I am currently doing the suggestions and rediscovering the joy of Judy Moody, Franny K. Stein, The Magic Tree house, and Captain Underpants (that Dav Pilkey is a genius). I am also in the process of discovering some new friends as I search book stores and ask which books sell and which don’t.
I’ll keep you posted as I continue on my trek.
Writing on the Sidewalk