Registration ended last night at 11pm CST. We have 270 officially registered participants and about 100 silent subscribers. If you know others that did not make it to registration in time, they are still welcome to subscribe for ReFoReMo guest educator posts by email. However, only officially registered participants will be admitted to the ReFoReMo Facebook Group and be eligible for prizes at the conclusion of ReFoReMo. I am hearing lots of amazing revelations in the Facebook group! I am so proud of our community! Let's read! ~Carrie
Whenever I do a book signing, there are a few people who tell me that they dream of writing a book for children and ask how they can get started. I always give the same two pieces of advice: (1) join the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and (2) read 100 books in the genre they would like to write. I first heard this second tip from Newbery Medalist Linda Sue Park back in 2006, and I couldn’t agree more.
It wasn’t until recently that I realized what I was doing from an educator’s point of view. I was suggesting that the aspiring authors use mentor texts. A hundred of them.
Educators know that using children’s literature as a model for student writing can be powerful. But the truth is that ALL writers can benefit tremendously by reading and studying the techniques employed by other writers. I often use mentor texts as I’m thinking about elements like voice and structure.
No matter how much experience we have as writers, mentor texts can guide us as we strive to stretch in new and exciting directions.
Melissa Stewart is the award-winning author of more than 150 nonfiction books for children, including No Monkeys, No Chocolate; Feathers: Not Just for Flying, Under the Snow, and Animal Grossapedia. She maintains the blog Celebrate Science and serves on the board of advisors for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. You can follow Melissa's books at www.melissa-stewart.com.