In this post from Marsha Diane Arnold (below) she writes about the value of quiet books.
We may never get a satisfying answer about the meaning of “too quiet.” But if our writing tends toward quiet we can study quiet books that have done well and think about how they’re different from our own rejected quiet ones.
Having recently sold a quiet picture book text, I pondered what made it different from my other rejected quiet stories. I came up with a list describing what the best quiet books do and what picture book writers should aim for.
Maybe it’s time for the quiet books to get a little bit noisy. Quiet books unite! Perhaps their motto should be, “Still waters run deep.”
Shallow rivers move swiftly, appearing more alive than deeper water. But that’s an illusion. Quiet people and quiet books, like rivers, often surprise us with their interesting, unexpected, and complicated ideas…with their depth.
Quiet books ask us to slow down, to go inward, to focus. They rescue us from the non-stop whirlwind. For children who are shy or anxious, quiet books encourage and help them realize they’re not alone.
My children enjoyed quiet books some 30 years ago; children still enjoy them today.
As parents, grandparents, and guardians we must also ask questions. Which books would we prefer our children to pull from their bookshelf night after night? How do we want their brains wired and rewired? What reel do we want them to have running in their heads for the rest of their lives?
So what’s a writer who loves writing quiet books to do? Just as we had to write better picture books as the market tightened, so must we elevate ourselves to the challenge of writing better quiet books as that market tightens. Our children need them, parents need them, the world needs them.
Now, won’t you please excuse me while I go read Miss Rumphius to my granddaughter?
Marsha Diane Arnold is an award-winning children’s book author with a heart of gold. Besides writing, she enjoys visiting schools internationally, nationally, and through Skype, sharing her love of books and writing through presentations and writing “funshops”. In 2008 Marsha was honored as one of seven artists invited to be part of Sequoia National Parks Foundation’s Artists in the Back Country, the only children’s author ever invited. The program’s goal is to rekindle the American tradition of enhancing public appreciation of our natural world through the arts. She shares her adventures in the high Sierras at www.earthsvoices.com
Meet the Friday Blogonauts
First Fridays will feature Bryan Patrick Avery, published writer , man of mystery, and professional magician among other things.
Second Fridays will feature awesome multi-award winning author Marsha Diane Arnold who will be writing about character-driven and/or nature-based books and/or anything she likes :)
Third Fridays will feature independent Aladdin/Simon & Shuster editor Emma Sector who has helped bring many books into the world.
Fourth Fridays will feature the great Christine Taylor-Butler who has published over 70 award-winning fiction and non-fiction and nonfiction books including the acclaimed new middle grade series - The Lost Tribes.
Fifth Fridays will feature the fabulous Carl Angel award-winning multi-published Illustrator and graphic designer.
Join our Tribe
and receive 7 Steps to Creative Happiness, access to free webinars, and lots more!
Your email addresses are always safe and respected with us.
Follow our Blog!