When people find out I am a children’s author, the response is always positive. I hear comments like, “Oh how fun!” or “I am so jealous!” Writing books for children is fun, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. But fun does not mean easy. The more you learn about writing for children, the harder it gets, because you realize there is much to learn and know about this genre.
For me, writing for children began as a passion, then turned into a career which turned into a ministry. Since parents are the ones who usually read books to their children, I am also writing for them. Children’s books need to be age-appropriate in language, concepts, and content. But in order to avoid the mundane “Dick and Jane” type books, they also have to engaging, fun to read, and have a lesson or purpose. They have to appeal to both the child and parent.
Writing for the Christian market adds an added dimension that is both challenging and rewarding. The spiritual lessons or biblical truths need to fit into the story naturally rather than forcefully. The spiritual lessons also need to be age-appropriate. Young children understand what it means to be special or loved, but how do you explain the concept of God’s grace to a preschool child?
My friend Ava Pennington is a Bible teacher and author of devotional books for adults. She has a desire to teach children spiritual truths while they are young, so that they will have a deeper understanding when they become adults. She came to me with an idea for a series called Faith Basics for Kids. Together we created a picture books series that teaches spiritual truths to children in a kid-friendly way. The first book in the series is Do You Love Me More? and it teaches about God’s grace. The second book is Will I See You Today? and it teaches children how they can be sure God is real. We are excited about these books published by Standard Publishing, because they address deeper topics, but also reach children at their level. In the back of each book is an addendum for parents and teachers to further explore each topic.
I have several more books to tell you about in the coming weeks and months. But for now, these are the ones worth checking out.