Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Lionel's Christmas Adventure Blog Tour

Good morning, lovely people of the blogosphere! Today, I bring you a guest post! Please enjoy.

Hello there everyone, Paul R. Hewlett here. I'm a children's book author and today I like to discuss what it's like writing chapter books for children. First, I would like to than Jo for having me and Kathy at I Am A Reader Not A Writer for hosting the Got Great Giveaways Hop. Thanks also go to Candace at Candace's Book Blog and Lori at Pure Imagination for hosting the Saturday Situation Giveaway linky. I'm currently on the Lionel's Christmas Adventure blog tour, for a full list of dates click here. For a sneak peak at what the books about, watch the trailer below. Make sure to enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card and a 3-pack of my ebooks.

Writing for the children's/middle grade age group that the Lionel's Grand Adventure series targets can be a challenge. One doesn't want to talk over their heads, but you don't want to dumb things down too much either. This age group is actually quite amazing. On one hand they are perfectly willing to accept magic and fantasy, but on the other hand they do not like having things explained over and over to them.

Another thing about this age group, in some cases the older reader might need things explained to them and are willing to accept and even expect it. This age group, not so. They are remarkable, particularly those that seek out reading, in their ability to make leaps without a lot of explanation. They are able, or at least more willing to do this than older readers.

PhotobucketThe middle grade, and even the lower YA age, are really eager to be bigger and more grownup than they are. They really want to experience grown up things. I know that I loved Encyclopedia Brown books growing up for that very reason. Here was a boy my age that was working as a detective, solving grown up crimes. This age group really want to experience grown up things. It's important to use your main character for this. Kids usually relate to and want to read about characters a bit older than they are. As an example a nine year old will be happy to read about a twelve year old, while a twelve year old probably won't be interested in the adventures of a nine year old (unless it's Harry Potter of course).

It's important not to use too sophisticated of words. It is okay to use bigger words, but in that case it's best to define them within the sentence and story. If you can't do that effectively, it's probably too big of a word. I personally like to keep the sentence structure simple. I think that is goes without saying that 6-12 year olds are much more mature these days than I was at the same age, but I still don't see the benefit of complex sentence structures. One thing that I feel goes over particularly well with this age group is similes. Using the description "like" really brings things to life for this age group. Compare the following sentences.

"Well you better...hey! What are you doing with Ma's yardstick?" asked Feeney.

"Well you better...hey! What are you doing with Ma's yardstick?" asked Feeney, his jaw sticking out like a cash register.

Certainly in the first sentence it's obvious that Feeney is unhappy, perhaps even angry, but in the second sentence he is indignant, even outraged. It's simple things like this that are often overlooked when writing for older readers that really make the pages come alive for middle grade readers.

These are few of my thoughts on writing chapter books for children. I
think my favorite quote, from the Russian writer Maxim Gorky says it
best, "You must write for children the same way you write for adults,
only better."

PhotobucketPhotobucketI'd like to thank Jo once again for having me on her blog. Make sure to pick up your copy of Lionel's Christmas Adventure, available now on Amazon in paperback or ebook. If you haven't read any of Jo's books, make sure you take a look at them all here.

For more information about author Paul R. Hewlett click here. He co-authors a middlegrade/YA blog at SherAHart: My Written Art. Keep up with what's new on Lionel's Grand Adventure FB page.

 My next stop on the tour is tomorrow at Kindle Book Promos. Now onto the giveaway. As a thank you to the reader's, I'm  giving away a
$25 Amazon gift card and 3-pack of my ebooks. Be sure to leave a comment!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I hope you've all enjoyed this post! Thank you, Paul, for coming by and giving us a guest post talking about your books AND for the lovely giveaway!

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!



  1. Thanks Jo for having me! I really enjoyed writing & sharing my post. I hope you, your family, & all your readers have a great Thanksgiving!

    Paul R. Hewlett

    1. No problem! It's a great post. Thanks for including me in your hop!

  2. My six year old wants me to write a children's book with him. I'm thinking it would be a fun project over winter break and this post really helps =)

    1. That sounds like a fun idea, Heather! Good way to keep him busy :) Thanks for popping by and leaving blog luv :)

  3. Hi Heather! Thanks for stopping by & reading my post. I hope it does help. That sounds like a wonderful project for you and your son. Great quality time together, encouraging reading, writing, and creativity. My hat is off to you and your son. I hope it is great fun & very successful. Have a great Holiday!

    Paul R. Hewlett

  4. Replies
    1. Hi Sarah!
      You're very welcome! Thank you for stopping by and taking the time to leave a comment. I hope you have a wonderful holiday season:)

      Paul R. Hewlett

    2. Hi, Sarah! Welcome to the blog! Thanks for stopping by, entering, and leaving some blog luv :)


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