Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

November Meeting: Author and Illustrator Vanessa Roeder

At the November meeting Vanessa Roeder, author and illustrator of LUCY AND THE STRING (Dial Books for Young Readers, 2018) offered tips on writing picture books.
Simplify the Concept – What’s the essence of your story?
Visualize the Action – What’s the simplest way to describe the action?
Consider the Page Turns – Think about where your manuscript would break from one page to the next.
Get Rid of the Extras – Don’t duplicate what will be shown in the illustrations.
Show, Don’t Tell – Text provides the opportunity to add senses, sounds, scents and feelings to each page. Use words to propel the action and emphasize what’s being shown in the illustrations.
Craft book recommendation: WRITING WITH PICTURES: HOW TO WRITE AND ILLUSTRATE CHILDREN’S BOOKS by Uri Shulevitz (Watson-Guptill, 1997)
Picture book examples shared: THE SWORD IN THE STOVE by Frank W. Dormer (Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2016); ADRIAN SIMCOX DOES NOT HAVE A HORSE by Marcy Campbell and Corinna Luyken (Dial Books for Young Readers, 2018); THE WALL IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BOOK by John Agee (Dial Books for Young Readers, 2018)