Thirteen mysterious writers at Kidlit Central bring you their best writing tips. Uncover their true identities and get a chance at one of nine fabulous prizes:
Copy of THE GIRLS, Blooming Tree Press' new middle grade anthology loaded with winning short stories. Cynthia Reeg
$20 gift certificate to Borders or Barnes and Noble. Kim Peek aka The Word Chef.
Copy of CALLIE AND THE STEPMOTHER. Susan Meyers.
Copy of WRITING FOR CHILDREN AND TEENS: THE CRASH COURSE. Cynthea Liu
Choice of MY LAST BEST FRIEND or MY NEW BEST FRIEND. Julie Bowe.
A random unicorn. Elizabeth Casteel.
GOLLYWHOPPER GAMES tee shirt. Jody Feldman
One page synopsis critique. Dori Butler **
Rhyming picture book critique. Kay Pluta **
**Non-US entrants are eligible for these two prizes since these can be delivered via e-mail.
It's super simple to play. Just click through the tips and write down the writer's true identity next to the corresponding number. Ex. 1. Hortense Morgenstern (not the real name), email your answers to email@example.com with the subject header KIDLIT CONTEST.
Unmask SEVEN writers for ONE chance at the drawing, all THIRTEEN for TWO chances, and link to this entry from your blog for THREE chances. (Drop us a note in comments so we know you did the linky thing, please.) One prize per person.
Contest Entry Date has been extended until Friday Nov. 7th, midnight EST.
1. The Cheshire Cat says:
You haven't a ghost of a chance of trapping readers in your story unless you evoke their "Six" senses:
*Tickle their sense of Touch
*Stun their sense of Sight
*Tantalize their sense of Taste
*Howl at their sense of Hearing
*Smoke out their sense of Smell
*and Dig Up their buried Memories
2. The Cat in the Hat says, "Don't let skeletons scare you--uncover your story's bones (the GOAL, the OBSTACLE, the RESOLUTION) to make sure it can stand on its own."
3. "Scare up some writing time by scheduling a writing date with your ghoul friends," says a princess.
4.A purple haired witch says, "To avoid being buried alive in laundry and other household chores, find a new place to haunt for a few hours each week (a library or a coffee shop)."
5. Pocahontas says, "When I feel that I’m sucking the blood out of a manuscript, I blow the dust and spider webs off another to revive my thoughts."
6. "I dig up authentic character traits by haunting school events, helping with a youth group, and dissecting kid magazines," says a lovely mermaid.
7. "I ward off the demons of doubt by listing them in LJ entries locked to my eyes only, and then writing a list of ways I could fix whatever problem is scaring me silly if it really does materialize. Here's an example: says the jester.
8. A friendly cornstalk says, "When I’m mired in the graveyard-y middle of a story, knee deep in swirling mists of doubt, surrounded by the dark and crumbling stones of other Brilliant Ideas Unfinished, I flee to the mundane and ordinary land of Householdchores – more often than not, solutions magically find me there."
9. Duckycorn says, "When I get so sick of revising that I could SCREAM, I do!"
10. The pumpkin bunny says, "Get rid of the skeletons in your writing closet by refusing to work on dusty, old manuscripts that are practically near-dead anyway and take a stab at something new!"
11. "Banish the ghouls that come disguised as good ideas; the ones that are very attractive and hypnotize you into believing that they are the answer to your plotting problems but, in reality, do not reflect the heartbeat of your story or your characters," says the Monkey.
12. "When the ghost of self-doubt rattles my attic, I write. The spook's clatter is the loudest when I'm idle. But when I'm creating, the groans grow silent and instead my characters inhabit my attic. Being productive is my one surefire way to believe in myself," Cinderella says.
13. The frog says, "Bust through those cobwebs of self-doubt by digging through your piles of "nice rejections" and seeing what treats you can glean from them. Maybe an editor/agent asked to see more of your work or gave you suggestions for improvement or, I don't know, offered compliments on your use of dog metaphors. Whatever the case, celebrate these treats and make the most of them. Editors and agents don't pass them out like candy, you know.