Monday, 2 February 2015

From picture books to Kid literature

We can all remember the time when we first got hooked into a book as a child. Where the magic began.
We may still have that book, or still remember the warm feeling it gave us and the memories it evoked when recalling it back to mind. It is like the first album we bought, never to be forgot. We also must remember the books we loved but can't for the life of us remember what the title was, or who the author was. We just liked the story, and still search for it from time to time through google/good reads. That was how I began on the road to the kid literature community. Through searching for children's books, and wondering how hard it may be for children to find the many wonderful books that are out there, that don't even make it to a bookstore.

 Kid Literature Authors come together only last year to bring you a magic treasure trove of children's lit!
Lit as in literature. From bonny picture books, to captivating and enchanting stories that children will want to read again and again.
Being able to read and write is a must needed basic foundation for knowledge and a building block for family values. This propels us as children into a world ready for discovery. With literacy comes a quality of life that can take us to the far ends of the earth without even leaving our own room. Obviously you can go anywhere in your imagination and to have a book at your fingertips literally is an accomplishment in itself, you have the universe in your hands. 
So a simple basic need in primary school children, learning them to read, is in a way like giving them the world.

Then we can combine the ability of reading to children and showing them how to enjoy a story from a picture book. This is better adapted first in the very early years as babies on your lap with a book to look through, the wonderful picture books that start the whole process off. 
But for some of those children who do not have book loving parents or who were never interested in a book and especially in a time where gaming technology is the new must have in today's society, some may ask- do books still have a place in today's modern society? 
When living at a faster paced lifestyle is it all to easy in the short run to just hand them a gaming console to make your life simpler?  ... 
Well of course these games are a blessing surely when they can keep the kids quiet until bedtime. It has to be so much easier to keep them happy and quiet and out of your way. Maybe we need to stop and think that through.
 There is obviously a lot of plus points that come with console or mobile games and with parental supervision and time allowances certain child friendly games can be fun and  creative. But it is the games that require a higher score and that are not the most suitable for children that can cause problems. If any game gets a hold of your child to a point where they show distress symptoms when asked to put them down, or you see a pattern forming where the child is in their own game/mobile world for a lot of the day (maybe even night) and would prefer to interact with this world rather than family outside of it, then that can be a problem that must be avoided. It is so paramount to allow only certain times for these devices and parents/carers need to be vigilant to prevent distress symptoms from occurring in the first place.
 By making more time for children, and showing an enjoyment in whatever activity they are doing, and always listening to them and being encouraging can be the tools to use to avoid this addictive technology slide and often unsocial behaviour in children. Reading and sharing time with your children and showing them the enjoyment of books should be a big part of their life. Books are needed today more than ever for this reason. If they see you read regular, they are more likely to do the same.
Picture books are the key to introduce young children to more of the world. They can travel to the moon/another planet/another country! They can meet creatures and people they may never know about, and also imaginary animals who can speak and other magical things just as examples. This gives them an appetite to pick up books for themselves eventually. Once they get to the age of 7, 8 and up-over  they may want to read to themselves. 
If you have a young reader (6-10 years) who is reluctant to pick up a book after the picture book stage, or finds it a chore, give them the diary of a whimpy kid then later the dork diaries, for examples and they will find fun laughter and enjoyment and then you can introduce them to more in-depth books like Harry Potter, Jacqueline Wilson, to name but 2 in the kids section of the local book store. It is your job as an adult to make going to the bookstore or library a treat! Go on their Birthdays and Christmas, and Easter, and a Weekend! Why even take them on your own Birthday. And as important as that- let them see you reading them, and also picking your own books. When they bring books home from school, if you show a pleasure when looking through the book, then they will pick up on that, and good habits are formed.
As parents and carers these are the basic and very important things we can do for our children. I had always loved reading to children at home and in the classroom, to bring pleasure through books.

                                                                   Kid Literature 

The Kid literature community started soon after a little research online, and then I realised how hard it was for children to actually find some books, especially indie author books. At that time it seems like the people we want to read our books are looking for us blindly in the dark, children who are still getting the hang of the internet, and lets face it would need to possess a debit card to purchase some pocket money priced e-books for their e-readers/kindles.
 So you have to rely on the people who provide and care for children to download them, so then we need them to be able to find us easy. It seemed like a big task.
Initially I wasn't sure what to look up first online, and like everyone else I had to research many topics related to children's books, as well as promoting and marketing books, and the best key words to use, and many other tips along the way. I kept a list of key words and sentences to refer back too whenever I needed to recall anything. We need a sign online directing children with the words, this is the way to children's books you will love that are not at the top of any list.
And because the majority of the time our books are not placed  in the middle of WHSmith  'book of the week' shelf then the challenge gets bigger.

Most indie authors need to be committed and write for enjoyment and satisfaction. If an author gets to do a school visit with their book that is an achievement. You have to know how to promote your book and market it. 
If you find promoting your book a burden then unfortunately it isn't even the slush pile for you. Even on days when only the slush pile will do. No, you will no doubt will give it up as a bad job before long, as you have to at least enjoy writing and always know that anything else is a bonus.
 Kid Literature came about through the constant dedication and passion for getting more books into the hands of children, amazing books that may never sadly reach them. And to also make children's literacy popular again for everyone and any age.
Kid Literature has a never waning passion for literature and letting everyone know the importance of showing children the enjoyment of  reading.

So the passion grew and we branched out into the twitteraci. 
A community of united-singing-from-the-same-song-sheet people, had no hesitation  in helping build up their group and before long Kid literature was on many other social media sites  online.
It is wonderful to bring authors together and lift spirits, offer moral support for those who have never even written a word but had always dreamed of writing, right through to the successful author.
On twitter we enjoy promoting every kind of creative person, many of your lovely stories and  illustrations, and your idea's, and tips and review feedback. We show articles relating to all forms of literature and we promote up to Young Adult books.

We want to sprinkle the magic about a bit more, right into the hands of children.
 To bring out their enchantment of reading and the wonder of a picture in a book that can inspire many little minds into great minds.  inspire, to make someone want to say read it again! When we hear the magic words, read it again! we know we have achieved so much. So much as parents, carers, teachers and creative inspiring people who decided to put one word in front of another. 
On twitter you will notice us with the handle @kidliterature and the hashtags #kidlit #kidliterature  #amwriting #Mondayblogs 

Facebook links are to be found at the top of this page, as is the founder's page and other social media links.