Tag Archives: Young fiction

module 1 assessment

Explain why you would like to write children's books and whether the results of your market research, as suggested, in this module, enable you to feel more confident in writing for a certain age group or whether you have changed your initial plan and would prefer to write for a different age range.

I was surprised at how easy it was to answer this question – so I guess this is what I want to do!

My answer:

I would like to write children’s books because this has always been a gentre that has interested me. I can remember as a child, running down to the mobile library every Tuesday, to see if there were any new books by Enid Blyton on the shelves. When I saw that there was, I wuold quickly book it out, run home and devour it straight away. It would be wonderful if my books were as eagerly anticipated as this, even by just one child.

I think that the books you read as a child, you never forget and you pass them on to your children and they then pass them onto their children. Children books have stood the test of tiem, the Very Hungry Caterpillar, Black Beauty and I’m sure the Harry Poter books will be around for years to come.

When visiting the library, I’m often drawn to the children’s books, firstly to take a look at which genres are popular, look at the new books by David Walliams and the old books by Roald Dahl and to admire the colourful and imaginative covers of the books.

As a grandmother, I love sitting down and reading with my grandchildren, I love the look on their faces as they listen and take in what is being said and ask questions. It would be lovely to think that the same is happening in other families and that my stories are generating the same sort of conversations.

In children’s books, you can include almost anything: talking animals, invisible people, wicked witches, fairies, which means that your imagination can go as wild as you like and you can create whole worlds for the children to be a part of. Even though this still needs to be thought out carefully, you can also have a lot of fun creating your different characters.

The early readers age group has always been the age bracket that I regarded as my target audience, from five years old to about seven. I feel that at this ae they enjoy the simpler stories with straightforward story lines and an underlying message that good is better than evil. At this age, children have progressed from books that have more pictures than words, to more words than pictures, but the sentences still need to be short, with no long, hard to read words and after completing the task of writing a short paragraph for each genre, I found my writing style complimented these types of books.

I would love to write a series of books, featuring the same characters, who face every day dilemmas and are able to overcome these dilemmas wih help from friends and family.

After completing some market research, I am still eager to write for this age group as I think it is a wonderful age when children really do discover the joy of books by reading them themsevles to with their parents, siblings or carers and I would love for my books to be a part of that.

Assessor Comment:

Excellent answer, honest and well written to get your point across.

List your overall goals for taking this course and include any smaller stepping stones to help you achieve those goals. 

I think that my overall goals were quite easy and the smaller stepping stones were common sense.

My answer:

My goal for taking this course is to eventually become a published children’s writer. I would love to have a book published that is ready by children, that they can relate to.

Anothe goal is that I would like to write more often, at the moment I can’t seem to get into this mindset and I would like to learn ways in which I can sit down and be creative and write.

Smaller stepping stones would be to produce good quality short stories for children and I would like to be able to learn how to create interesting characters.

Assessor Comments:

Realistic small stepping stone, everyone needs to start somewhere.

Grade needed to pass: 60%

Your grade: 100%

Your mark: Distinction

WRITING books for children diploma

During the first lockdown of 2020, I happened to come across an advert via Facebook which was advertising courses at a discounted price. A particular subject caught my eye – Writing Books for Children Diploma and the price had been reduced from £199 to just £25, which I thought was too good of an opportunity to miss, as I was then in the process of writing a childrens book, so I immediately signed up. The company was the Centre of Excellence and they have courses for a wide range of subjects and they still have many courses at a discounted price!

The process was very straight forward and before long I was able to start with this course. So I thought it might be a good idea to share my experience with you, which means that I will be sharing my work and the feedback that I receive with the hope that it will inspire any would-be writers out there to have a go themselves.

I have to admit that whilst I started during the first lockdown, I didn’t get very far as, ironically, I was working on my first children’s book (which is due to be published this year), but now we are in lockdown three, I am hoping to finish this course.

So come along on this journey with me, we can all learn together and you never know, you could be the next Enid Blyton or J. K. Rowling!

The Magic Jigsaw Puzzle

Harry is ten years old, he lives with his mother and father and he is an only child. Harry loves jigsaw puzzles, he loves sorting the pieces out into corners, straight edges and the different shaped ones. He loves jigsaws with cartoons, scenery, people, animals, in fact, Harry loves jigsaws of any sort, so you can imagine how pleased he was when he saw that a new jigsaw shop had opened on his high street.

The Jolly Jigsaw Shop was squeezed in between the Chinese Takeaway and the Fish and Chip shop, it was hard to spot their front door, but Harry noticed it and excitedly opened the door and stepped into a world of jigsaw puzzles.

The shop had every kind of jigsaw imaginable; 500 pieces, 1000 pieces, large pieces, wooden and 3D. The shelves were stacked from floor to ceiling, he had never seen so many puzzles in one place. Harry had a hard time choosing which one he was going to buy, each time he chose one, he found another one he liked better.  Whilst he was trying to make a decision, the owner of the shop came up to him, “Hello, young boy,” he boomed, “What are you looking for today?” Harry looked up to see a large man, with bright ginger hair and a ginger moustache and beard.

“I’m not really sure.” Harry replied and added, “Do you have any favourites?”  “Well, I do like historical jigsaws, ones that show events in history, like this one for instance,” and the shop owner held up a puzzle which showed a picture of the Battle of Waterloo.

Harry thought that it did look interesting and so he decided to buy it. “No, no, young man, I won’t take any money for it, you are my first customer and I’d like to show my appreciation.” Harry did not want to accept this man’s kind offer and offered to pay, but the shop owner insisted, he just asked if Harry could return the puzzle once he had completed it, so Harry walked out of the shop with the puzzle under his arm.

Once home, Harry started to complete the jigsaw puzzle, it was 1000 pieces and the picture was very detailed; there were horses and soldiers fighting and a lot of gun smoke, so it took him a little while to complete.

A couple of days later, Harry had one final piece to put in the jigsaw puzzle. He placed it in its position and leaned back to admire the picture.

Then, a strange thing happened, the puzzle began to sway quickly from side to side, the picture became blurred and Harry felt as though he was being swallowed up into the puzzle and then everything went black…

Suddenly, Harry saw a bright light and he could hear voices, he looked around and he was no longer in his bedroom, it seemed as though he was in the middle of a muddy field. There were soldiers everywhere, shouting and rushing around, orders were being shouted by men on horses and then Harry saw a man sat in a tent, the tent had the English flag above it and he was surrounded by important looking men, Harry looked closer and couldn’t believe his eyes, it was the Duke of Wellington, whom Harry had just seen in his jigsaw puzzle. The Duke was deep in conversation with these men and they were earnestly pointing at a large map in the middle of the table. Harry moved closer and strained to hear what they were saying.

“But we are drastically outnumbered,” one soldier said, “We need to wait until the Prussians get here before we go into battle,” The Duke of Wellington replied, “The Prussians will be bringing about 45,000 soldiers, which will help us in battle because at the moment we are outnumbered by Napoleon’s army.”

At that moment, Harry heard soldiers shouting, “The French are attacking, everyone to the battlefield,” and he could hear gunfire and cannon shots. Harry ran down to the battlefield and found a safe place to hide, he watched as the battle raged on and eventually the Duke of Wellington’s army managed to force the French to retreat.

Harry once again saw the Duke of Wellington, “We have lost lots of soldiers during this fighting,” he informed his generals, “But we need to stop defending our position and attack the French,” and his generals nodded in agreement.

This was the last time that Harry saw the Duke of Wellington as everything began to sway and Harry felt as though he was falling again. This time when he looked around, Harry was back in his bedroom, he looked at the jigsaw puzzle and the picture had changed, it showed the Duke of Wellington riding his horse in celebration of his victory.

Harry rushed to his computer, he looked up The Battle of Waterloo and sure enough, what he had seen and heard had actually happened, he was amazed. He immediately broke up the puzzle and went back to the jigsaw puzzle shop.

When Harry arrived at the shop, the owner was there, he was completing a puzzle himself and he looked up when he heard the shop bell tinkle and smiled when he saw it was Harry. “Did you enjoy that puzzle?” he asked, “Did it teach you anything?”

Harry reached into his bag and placed the puzzle on the counter, surprised that it was now again showing the Battle of Waterloo on the cover. “That puzzle was amazing, I learnt a lot about The Battle of Waterloo, do you have any others I could do?”

The shop owner reached up to a shelf above him and pulled out another puzzle, this time it was a scene depicting The Boston Tea Party. “How would you like to do this one?” he said, “There’s a lot you could learn from this one.”

Harry nodded, he couldn’t wait to get home and see what would happen when he completed this puzzle.