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by Shelley Moore Thomas

Okay, so I have my picture book idea for today. Yay! But I kind of feel the need to get another one in…to get ahead, you know?

And then I worry if I am following the rules or not. Am I even allowed to think of 30 ideas in ONE day, or is it a MUST that I pace myself and only create one idea per day? And what happens if I get a good idea that’s so amazingly HOT that I must write a draft NOW? Not next month. Not next week. Not tomorrow. NOW.


And then I realize that PiBoIdMo is not about rules.

Break the rules if you need to. Just break ’em.

PiBoIdMo is about getting on a first name, maybe even nick-name basis with your muse.

(And really, some of the best children’s books don’t really follow the rules, now do they?)

I mean, some books have amazing vocabulary for being an easy reader. (Uh-hum….mine for example.) I put in the word “Methinks” in my easy reader series, Good Night, Good Knight. And I got to keep it in! I also put in some words that may or may not be real words, but they sounded so nice together and were words that are fun when they dance on your tongue.

Really, there is only one rule when writing a book for kids. It’s got to encourage the reader to TURN THE PAGE. It’s got to engage the child in the story enough that they WANT to learn to read it themselves.

(Well, maybe there are two rules…*Get Kids to Turn the Page* and *Inspire Kids to Read.*)

Shelley Moore Thomas is also known as the StoryQueen. I know what you’re thinking…does she really wear a ridiculous crown, fake jewels and a velvet cape? Does she really play with puppets? Well, er um…yes…and yes. But wait! Don’t go! It’s not as strange as it sounds. She’s a writer for children and, well, we do weird things sometimes. Her latest book is A Cold Winter’s Good Night.

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