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The Writing for Children: picture books and junior fiction (Intermediate Level) short course is for students familiar with the basics of writing for children who wish to continue to develop their writing skills.
Our intermediate Writing for Children – picture books and junior fiction course offers students currently writing for children, the skills and opportunity to specialise in writing for the younger ages of the children’s publishing market.
It is ideally suited to those who have already completed the Writing for Children short course, it will give you a set of practical techniques to work with, as well as an insight into the children’s books currently being published for younger children. Although the course will not cover illustration techniques, illustrators who would like to write their own stories will find this course useful.
This course will be taught by an internationally published children’s writer and storyteller who will share her knowledge not only in the craft but also how to prepare your work for publication and beyond.
Taught over 10 week evening classes and delivered at our central London location, the course offers expert tuition and the flexibility of part-time study.
This Writing for Children intermediate course, taught in the heart of London, is for students who would like to write picture book texts and junior fiction for children aged 3-8.
The first four weeks will cover how to write picture books including stories and non-fiction, covering the entire spectrum of structuring the story, knowing what will be represented in pictures vs. text and how to keep young children engaged using language and imagery. The non-fiction aspect will cover how to write a subject – be it a person or an event or a concept engagingly for children.
The next three weeks will cover how to write junior fiction and non-fiction (both illustrated fully and sparsely) ranging from ages five to eight, when children are becoming confident readers. It will cover, amongst other things, the stories that appeal to this age group, structure and plotting, settings and dialogue and voice.
Across both picture books and junior fiction, we will look at texts from a variety of children’s authors, both contemporary and classics.
The last three weeks will look at finding markets for your work and the various avenues in educational and trade publishing.
Each week students will tackle writing exercises and there will be some element of sharing work within the group.
By end of the course, the students should have a strong grasp of what it takes to succeed in the tough yet rewarding environment of children’s publishing.
“ It was a great course, Sophia is a great tutor, very eloquently spoken and clearly knows her subject. ”
Over the course of 10 weekly evening classes on the Writing for Children picture books and junior fiction short course, you will learn:
You should have taken an introductory fiction writing course or be writing regularly.
Good written and spoken English.
Informal assessment will take place through group discussion, class room activities, and questions and answers sessions as guided by your tutor.
Odd Dog Out – Rob Biddulph
The Gruffalo – Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler
I want my hat back – Jon Klassen
Julian is a mermaid – Jessica Love
Oi Dog – Kes Gray and Clare Gray
The Ugly Five – Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler
Ada Twist Scientist – Andrea Beatty, David Roberts
The Tiger Who Came to Tea – Judith Kerr
The Very Hungry Caterpillar – Eric Carle
Not Now Bernard – David McKee
Where the Wild Things Are – Maurice Sendak
King of the Sky – Nicola Davies & Laura Clarin
The Street Beneath My Feet – Charlotte Guillian and Yuval Zommer
Wordless Picture Books
The Arrivals – Shaun Tan
Flotsam – David Weisner
Junior Fiction / Chapter Books (Ages 5-8)
Anna Hibiscus series – Atinuke
Clarice Bean, That's Me – Lauren Child
The BFG – Roald Dahl & Quentin Blake
Horrid Henry – Francesca Simon & Tony Ross
Hooey Higgins series – Steve Voake
Flying Fergus – Chris Hoy, Joanna Nadin & Clare Elson
Dog Man – Dav Pilkey
Claude series by Alex T Smith
This list is by no means exhaustive but just a sample.
Do visit your local library / children’s section in a bookstore and the following resources to understand the range and variety.
Also check out books by the Course Leader at www.chitrasoundar.com
Chitra Soundar has published over 30 books for children in the UK, India, US, Pakistan and her books have been translated into French, German, Chinese and Thai amongst others. Her picture book Farmer Falgu Goes on a Trip (illustrated by Kanika Nair, published by Karadi Tales) was shortlisted for the inaugural The Hindu Good Books children’s book award in India.
The second book in the junior fiction series, A Jar of Pickles and a Pinch of Justice (illustrated by Uma Krishnaswamy and published by Walker Books) was shortlisted for the Surrey Children’s Book award and won the inaugural Eugenie Summerfield children’s book award in 2018.
Her picture book Pattan’s Pumpkin (illustrated by Frané Lessac, published by OtterBarry Books) has won many accolades including being chosen by the Read Across America campaign for October 2017.
Her latest book You’re Safe with Me (illustrated by Poonam Mistry, published by Lantana Publishing) has been shortlisted for the Early Years Excellence award and received starred reviews from Booklist, the ALA’s flagship magazine.
Find out more at www.chitrasoundar.com and follow her on twitter @csoundar and on Instagram @chitrasoundar