Our new guest blogger, the awesome Jen Swanson, is on a deadline with a book today and won’t be starting until February, so I’m filling in. I’m in the midst of preparing for the Academy’s first workshop/webinar on the topic of breaking rules and, of course, I’m a wee bit obsessed with it. So I decided to blog about the word Don’t, which prefaces many of the rules that we’ll be talking about in the interactive workshop. In our workshop we’ll not only be sharing over 50 rules to break, like “Don’t be negative,” with examples, but also the reasons why breaking these rules are so effective in grabbing children’s and editor’s attention. So here’s a little sneak peek at 20 picture books that take the rule of “Don’t be negative” and turn it on its head to great cause.
Don't Take Your Snake For A Stroll by Karin Ireland, David Catrow | Don't Wake the Bear!
by Steve Smallman, Caroline Pedler | Don't Turn the Page! by Rachelle Burk, Julie Downing | I Don't Want to Be a Pea! by Ann Bonwill, Simon Rickerty | When Dads Don't Grow Up by Marjorie Parker, R.W. Alley | Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Anna Kemp, Sara Ogilvie | Mama Don't Allow by Thacher Hurd
| I Don't Want a Cool Cat! by Emma Dodd | Don't Copy Me! by Jonathan Allen | Monsters Don't Eat Broccoli by Barbara Jean Hicks, Sue Hendra | Pirates Don't Take Baths by John Segal | Don't Squish the Sasquatch! by Kent Redeker, Bob Staake | Dogs Don't Wear Sneakers by Laura Joffe Numeroff, Joe Mathieu | Don't Worry Bear by Greg E. Foley | The Berenstain Bears Don't Pollute
by Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain | Don't Push the Button! by Bill Cotter | Clarice Bean, Don't Look Now by Lauren Child | Don’t Be Horrid Henry by Francesca Simon and Tony Ross| Pirates Don’t Change Diapers by Melinda Long and David Shannon | Don’t Say That Word by Alan Katz and David Catrow | Don’t let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems
As you can see, breaking or twisting rules, like using negative words, can have a positive affect on children’s picture book appeal!
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