Top critical review
47 people found this helpful
A bit on everything, but not enough detail to make it worth buying
on 13 July 2011
This is an okay book if you know absolutely nothing about writing for children. It's in 3 sections: Know Your Market (a breakdown of all the different areas of children's publishing from picture books to YA, non-fiction to poetry - c77pages), Get Writing (on writing style eg characterisation, plotting - c44 pages) and Being Published (eg manuscript presentation, publishing process, courses - c30 pages).
I found the book to be written in a very simplistic style. For example, on proofs - which are the pages when they have been typeset but before the pages are sent to the printer - Louise Jordan advises "If you spot any mistakes, then speak up." The author is sent the proofs for the sole purpose of checking the work for mistakes such as mis-spellings or typos. It's not a question of 'speaking up', it's part of the author's job to mark the text if there are mistakes. Another example: "Indeed, if a manuscript is good enough, it is not unusual to have several publishers all pitching for the same title." Well, durr.
Overall, if you have any knowledge of the children's book market at all, this is not going to add to it. If you don't know anything about writing for children, you'd probably be better off buying the Children's Writers and Artists Yearbook which contains exactly the same information plus details of all the publishers, agents, packagers etc.