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Strong Narrative Arcs for Picture Books

The Craft & Business of Writing

Deborah Halverson, assistant editor, Harcourt, Inc., also suggests studying these books as examples of strong narrative arcs.

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Gleam and Glow, by Eve Bunting, illustrated by Peter Sylvada. Traditional prose story: A family is separated by war, but they reunite with a new perspective thanks to people they meet during the separation. The ending is brilliant and effective because of the emotional setup—uncertainty turns to fear, then to sadness, then to hope.

That Summer, by Tony Johnston, illustrated by Bary Moser. Poetry: The text and illustrations use a blend of memory and present-day events to carry readers through one summer with a boy whose brother is sick with a terminal illness. The younger brother starts a quilt, stitching images of his favorite things. When he can no longer finish the quilt, the older brother finishes it for him in a tangible expression of the theme of memory.

Whose Shoes?, by Anna Grossnickle Hines, illustrated by LeUyen Pham. Simple text for young readers: A little mouse tries on the shoes of different family members, making her way through the entire family until she reaches her favorite pair of shoes: her own! The ending is a satisfying confirmation of self-identity after imagining what it's like to be someone else.

Jen Frederick: On the Power of Found Family

Jen Frederick: On the Power of Found Family

New York Times bestselling author Jen Frederick discusses how she represented the adoption experience in her new romance novel, Seoulmates.

Poetry Prompt

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 597

Every Wednesday, Robert Lee Brewer shares a prompt and an example poem to get things started on the Poetic Asides blog. This week, write an "Imagine a World..." poem.

How To Create a Podcast, Develop an Audience, and Get Your Novel Published

How To Create a Podcast, Develop an Audience, and Get Your Novel Published

We’ve discussed podcasting to help promote the book you’ve written—but what about podcasting as a way to tell the story itself? Here, author Liz Keller Whitehurst discusses how the podcast of her novel, Messenger, came to be.

Hunter or Hunted?

Hunter or Hunted?

Every writer needs a little inspiration once in a while. For today's prompt, we're in the middle of a hunt.

Announcing the Get Published in 2022: Breaking In Resource Directory

Announcing the Get Published in 2022: Breaking In Resource Directory

Announcing the Get Published in 2022: Breaking In Resource Directory from Writer's Digest magazine, which includes advice from 41 agents, 39 debut authors, and 27 small presses.

The Idaho Review: Market Spotlight

The Idaho Review: Market Spotlight

For this week's market spotlight, we look at The Idaho Review, a literary journal accepting poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction submissions.

Abbreviation vs. Acronym vs. Initialism (Grammar Rules)

Abbreviation vs. Acronym vs. Initialism (Grammar Rules)

Learn when you're using an abbreviation vs. acronym vs. initialism with Grammar Rules from the Writer's Digest editors, including a few examples of correct usages.

What Is Investigative Journalism?

What Is Investigative Journalism?

Alison Hill breaks down the definition of investigative journalism, how good investigative journalism makes for sweeping societal change, and how the landscape of the work is evolving.

writer's digest wd presents

WD Presents: 6 WDU Courses, an Upcoming Virtual Conference, and More!

This week, we’re excited to announce six new WDU courses, a romance writing virtual conference, and more!