Wednesday, 14 July 2010
About rabbits and ogres
Also today, I spent quite some time in a bookstore, browsing children's books and looking in particular for chapter books targeted at 7 year olds. For me it's quite difficult to identify the right reading level, but it seemed there isn't all that much available in the way of chapter books for this age. In the end I settled on a Tashi omnibus, which looked both good value and good reading, with illustrations to boot.
In addition to reading, my 7-year-old niece has taken to writing 'stories' in her spare time. She has emailed us a couple in recent months, and apparently written many more. Yesterday, after watching a fantasy children's film that included an evil ogre, she and I commenced a story about . . . an evil ogre (not any of the 'good' creatures featured in this film!). The idea is that we'll write a few sentences each and email it back and forth -- it will be interesting to see what comes of it. (The story is called The Eating Ogre.)
All this has really got me thinking about writing for children, and wondering whether I should give it a go. I suppose as a starting point I could write stories for my nieces and nephews and see which ones they like. Or, I could write down some of their highly imaginative (although often derivative!) ideas and weave them into something. This is not the first time I've contemplated giving children's fiction a go, but it's the first time I've had a ready-made audience, so to speak. Definitely some food for thought.
Now, off I go to write a few paragraphs about an ogre . . .