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Tips on Writing for Children with World of Ink Co-Authors Tom Listul and Heather Listul Hewitt

Tips on Writing for Children


  • It is important to think like a kid.
  • Try to find that place inside of you where your imagination can come up with stories that kids will connect with. Funny stories, fictional stories, life stories, whimsical stories, stories about things you remember as a kid are all good avenues to explore.
  • Try to remember what you enjoyed reading about as a child and what was funny or interesting to you. It might be good to test out some ideas you have on children you know. Ask for their input or to rate your idea or part of a story, and you might be surprised with how they respond.
  • Sometimes you might want to simplify what you are writing depending on the age group you are targeting.
  • You do not want children to be confused or lose interest with your story.
  • The illustrations and the message you want to convey is also important to consider.
  • The overall feeling of a story can change dramatically depending on how the words are depicted through pictures. It can be helpful to think about what you picture in your mind as you are writing, and try to bring those pictures to life through the illustrations.
  • The most important thing is just to have fun with writing and to enjoy the process. It is likely that children will enjoy it if you had fun with it and were creative.  


Mini Interview with the authors of "Monkey Made Dream"


What inspired you to write?

Tom: I started writing just as an outlet to express myself through story telling.  Song writing is the same way for me. I enjoy telling a story that takes a person somewhere that they can relate to.


Heather: I enjoy writing as a way to escape to a different place and look at ideas in different ways. It is fun to see where a story can go.


Can you share with us a little about your current book?

Tom & Heather: This is a story about a little girl who wakes up for school one morning and finds that her little brother has been replaced by a monkey in his bed.  The story takes you through their day as the little girl tries to explain to everyone about the monkey wearing her brother’s clothes. There is a twist at the end of the story when the truth of the story is revealed.


What type of book promotion works for you? Any special strategies you’d like to share?

Tom & Heather: Well, this is our first children’s book that we have written, so we are just enjoying the whole process.  We self published this book ourselves and our publishing company has been helpful.  The book is on several web sites – Amazon, Barnes and Nobles, Book World and others.  We are looking into a marketing plan that will feature this book in many avenues.  Also, our World of Ink Book Tour will help get our book out to many outlets, hopefully, with some helpful reviews.  On the local side, we are having a book signing day in two local communities near us.  We will also use Facebook to get our children’s book out to the public.


What is the most difficult part of writing?

Tom: Coming up with an idea for a story is the easy part.  Finishing the story is the hard part.


Heather: I think organizing thoughts and fully developing a story can be difficult.


How do you see the future of book publishing, both traditional, electronic, and print on demand?

Tom: It seems that self-publishing will grow, because there is an outlet for new writers through the Internet.  Electronic books seem to be growing if looking around at an airport is any indication, but there is still something about holding a hard cover book and a cup of coffee.


Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

Tom: Just keep writing every day.


Heather: Enjoy the process!


I thank you for taking the time to share with me and my readers about being an author.


About the Authors:

Tom Listul wrote Monkey Made Dream with his daughter, Heather Listul Hewitt, when she was eight years old. A farmer from southwest Minnesota, he is also a singer/songwriter. Listul made Monkey Made Dream into a children’s song and has sang it at numerous coffee houses and children’s classrooms. Hewitt is now a speech-language pathologist, who works for a school district with students of all ages. She enjoys helping children develop literacy skills and a love for reading.


You can learn more about Tom Listul and Heather Listul Hewitt at their World of Ink Tour page or at the links below.


Facebook Fan Page!/pages/Monkey-Made-Dream/119130761489469

Facebook Event Page!/event.php?eid=198703490158349

Publisher Website: Trafford Publishing


Tom Listul and Heather Listul Hewitt's next stop is on March 18th at Stories for Children Magazine FG Interview

and on  March 21st You can tune into RRRadio-Stories for Children with hosts: VS Grenier, D.M. Cunningham and Kris Quinn Christopherson. Live Radio Interview at 11am MST (10am PST, Noon Central and 1pm EST) Call in number (646) 595-4478

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Comment by Aidana WillowRaven on March 17, 2011 at 11:22am

Great post.


I assume they illustrated it, as well?

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