“The greatest stories we read as children still live large in our memories,” says Lindsey Alexander. “From Charlotte’s Web to Harry Potter to Where the Wild Things Are, the books we discover as children shape us, inspire us to read on, and maybe even turn us into writers.”
If you’re eager to share a story with the next generation of readers, this workshop will help acquaint you with the basics of writing for children, stoke your creative fire, and hone your writing craft. Whether you’re interested in picture books, chapter books, or young adult novels, this class will help you to begin new projects or further develop projects that you’ve already begun. Class time will be divided between craft discussions, writing exercises, and some peer critique. You’ll learn the ins and outs of the children’s book genre — the various formats, audiences, and markets for your work. We’ll also have the opportunity for a conversation and studio tour with published author and illustrator Thacher Hurd.
Every week, students will share responses to weekly writing prompts, which are designed to help you create colorful characters, pitch-perfect dialogue, and plenty of conflict. We’ll also try taking different approaches to starting and structuring a children’s book. “We’ll examine what makes writing books for children different than writing books for adults,” says Lindsey. “We’ll also explore how to find a voice that young readers will love.”
As a child, Lindsey Alexander wrote fan mail to her favorite authors and illustrators, a number of whom, she says “amazingly wrote back.” Years later, as an editor at HarperCollins Children’s Books, she had the pleasure of collaborating with some of these same talented people. Among the authors she’s worked with are Sarah Weeks, Laura Numeroff, Jean Craighead George, and William Joyce. Lindsey holds an MFA from The New School University and has taught at The New School and the Monterey Bay Writers Studio. As an editorial consultant, she works with a variety of clients, including both trade and academic publishers, and literary agencies.