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Creating a Children's Book

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Hello everyone and welcome to Launch Your Dream Book. It's Lindsey here, and today we are going to talk all about creating a children's book. So I know in the book course, we talk about self-help books and cookbooks and children's books. But we wanted to create a module that was specific to children's books so that you can get a little bit more clear in the process, since the process is slightly different, and hopefully make the ride to creating your children's book a lot smoother. All right, so today just a overview. We're going to talk about the language of children's books, the illustrations, and then, finally, putting it all together. So when you're writing your children's book, it's important to keep in mind the language of the book. So remember who you're writing for. I've seen over and over again a lot of children's books that are really written for adults. So as you're going through your children's book and as you're kind of mapping it out, remember that if it seems too complicated, to reconsider. Reconsider the sentence or the phrase and keep it extra simple. I also encourage you to browse children's books for inspiration. I think that if you can take a look at some of the bestselling children's books and see kind of the inspiration and also see what they've done and how they got a message to life in a way that is inspirational and fun and easy to understand for kids. Again if it seems too hard to understand, definitely rethink it. Keep simplifying and simplifying and simplifying until you can't simplify anymore. And then also keep it fun and entertaining. Remember it is a children's book, so you want to get your message across in a very short and concise and fun and entertaining way. So a children's book is all about the illustrations as you may know. So finding an illustrator is really, really important. You can either find an illustrator, or you may even choose to illustrate it yourself if you have those artistic abilities. But it's important to know that this is a huge part of the process and will take some time. So there's different types of illustrations, hand-drawn or digital illustrations. Again, I encourage you to go to the bookstore, go to the children's section, and just take a look at some different illustrations. See what kind of style you like. You can even create a little Pinterest board of the style of illustrations that you like. And just really get clear on the look and feel that you want. So then you can hopefully find an illustrator that will match exactly what you're looking for. Another thing to point out is if an illustrator is hand drawing the illustrations, they'll be drawing them either with a pen and a pencil, or there's some illustrators that use different paints and inks or watercolor. So it's important to also ask them if they will be able to scan it and make digital versions so that it can be laid out. Now some illustrators have no problem with that. They can actually lay out your book for you like it will look in a print copy. But if not, you'll need to hire a designer that can take those printed hand-drawn illustrations, scan them in, and lay them out to the printer's standards. And the same is if you're illustrating them yourself. If you decide to make little doodles or if you're illustrating them yourself, you will need to get them scanned in at a high res, and those will then need to be properly laid out in your book. And when you lay the book out, that's also when you add the text onto it. So it's kind of a little process where say you're hand drawing the illustrations, and you hand draw them, then you scan them in, then you put them in your layout, and then you can pick what font you want and add the text per page into the layout. Now if you find an illustrator that's doing all digital illustrations, then they'll be able to add the text in as they go and have it pretty much laid out for you. And also something you want to consider-- I put a little note here on royalties-- is that you always want to check with your illustrator and come up with an agreement that's going to work for the both of you. So sometimes illustrators just want a flat fee to do the illustrations, and sometimes they want a flat fee and then royalties on top of that. Or sometimes there's a mix of a flat fee for the illustrations and then after the book sells so many copies, then the royalties kick in. I've seen it done every single way. And so I just always tell people to just make sure you have that conversation and get clear with the person that you're working with and what you each feel comfortable with. So putting it all together. So in the course, we provided you with this little storyboard template, and so that's a really great way to just map out the look and the feel that you want. So for example in the empty box, that's where you can maybe put some inspiration or put a little stick figure or text illustration of what you have in mind. And then below it is where you can either write it out a little bit more, or you can even place the text of what you want on that page underneath. So for example, if it was The Cat in the Hat and you wanted a picture of a cat with a hat, you would either try to draw it in there or kind of describe in there, you know, I want this cat, I want an orange cat with a purple hat on this page. And then below is where you would put the text that will go with that page as well. So that way you can kind of, for your own self and for your illustrator, get a really clear picture of what this book is going to look like and what you had in mind for the illustrations on a page-by-page basis. So then once you map out the storyboard, again, you search for an illustrator that you feel comfortable working with that can match the look and feel that you desire. So that person will then be able to take your storyboard and talk with you a little bit more about some of these ideas and come up with characters and come up with layouts and colors that you like. And you can work together to create a really fun product. So this is an example of a storyboard that I just found online. So someone just mapped out, you know, this is what their page one looks like, page two. And they just kind of went through and just very briefly mapped out what they kind of wanted it to look like and what text was going to be on the page so that when they go to an illustrator, there's a basis to start with and there's an idea. And you can even see that this person also put in colors, like she put in silver, blue. And she added some little notes about things that she wanted throughout. So feel free to make it your own and get as specific and clear as you can get about what you visualize for each page. So once the illustrations are complete, again like I mentioned, they'll need to be scanned digitally and laid out for print. So you can check out the CreateSpace layout requirements. I put a little link there so whoever you're working with can just pull those requirements very easy. And if they know what they're doing as far as laying out in design, which they most likely should, then they'll be able to do that no problem. Here's an example that I have of a children's book that I did actually. And ours was done digitally, so it was just laid out. And we were able to put the text where we wanted. And our characters kind of remained the same throughout, and we were able to add things on each page. So this was done digitally, but if it's hand-drawn then you'll just need to scan it in and have it laid out. So again, those requirements are there and available for you and your designer. So if you need help finding illustrators or designers, feel free to check out some different resources. Elance or is great because you can search, you can see the styles of illustrators and what they have to offer and also a price range and what that looks like. You can also ask around locally. Maybe you know someone. You'd be surprised who does illustrations. I was talking to one of my friends one day, and I know that she's a writer. And she was like, oh, I actually went to school for art. I can do illustrations. And so she ended up doing a project for me, and I wouldn't have known that if I didn't ask. And then the last thing, you know, is contacting a local art school. I know there's art institutes all over the US, and there's art schools all over the world really. And many students are looking to build their portfolio and add to it and have something under their belt so that whenever they go for job interviews when they graduate, they can say, hey, look what I did. So that may be something, a lower cost as well, because maybe they're looking to build their portfolio or they're looking for some sort of creative internship if you will. So get creative with it. But these resources are here for you. And again, I think, as you move through this process, it's important to know that you really just want to get clear on the look and the feel that you want. And map it out the best that you can, so that when you do decide to work with someone and work with an illustrator, you're really clear, it's really concise, and the process goes really smoothly for you.

Video Details

Duration: 10 minutes and 31 seconds
Country: Andorra
Language: English
License: Dotsub - Standard License
Genre: None
Views: 5
Posted by: integrativenutrition on Aug 11, 2015

Creating a Children's Book 7-26-15, 4.22 PM

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