Friday, March 25, 2011

What makes a good chidren's story / book?

There is no interview with an SFC Team Member today. Instead I have a wonderful guest post to share from World of Ink Tour Guests Tom Listul & Heather Listul Hewitt.

What makes a good chidren's story / book ?

Every children’s story that I have enjoyed has had some main ingredients. 

Interesting Characters and Story Line
First and foremost, it is important to have interesting characters and an interesting story line that will hold the reader’s attention. Children need to be able to relate to the story and have fun reading it. 

The words in a children’s story are the core of the book, but the illustrations are also very important. The overall feeling of a story can change dramatically depending on how the words are depicted through pictures. 

I think a good children’s story has illustrations that match the message that the words are trying to depict. It is also fun to see illustrations that are unique and colorful, because they will capture a child’s attention. 

Rhyme, Patterns or Hidden Messages
Some of my favorite children’s books are ones that have unique rhymes, patterns or hidden messages. People enjoy seeing and reading something different than what is already on the shelves so it is good to take chances. 

Tips on Writing for Children
  • Think like a kid. 
  • Use your imagination. 
  • Try to remember what you enjoyed reading about as a child. 
  • Ask children you know for their input or to rate your idea. You might be surprised with how they respond.
  • Simplify what you are writing depending on the age group you are targeting. 
  • The most important thing is just to have fun with writing and to enjoy the process. It is likely that children will enjoy it if you had fun with it and were creative.   

About the authors:
Tom Listul wrote Monkey Made Dream with his daughter, Heather Listul Hewitt, when she was eight years old. A farmer from southwest Minnesota, he is also a singer/songwriter. Listul made Monkey Made Dream into a children’s song and has sang it at numerous coffee houses and children’s classrooms. Hewitt is now a speech-language pathologist, who works for a school district with students of all ages. She enjoys helping children develop literacy skills and a love for reading.

Learn more about Tom Listul and Heather Listul Hewitt at their World of Ink Tour Page!


  1. Monkey Made Dream looks like a cute book. I like the video too. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on what makes a good childrens book!