Posted by: nancyisanders | January 25, 2013

Books on Writing for Children


As you can see in this picture, I’ve got a lot of books that I’m looking through right now on my journey to learn more about plot, especially for children’s manuscripts. (And I’ve even purchased about 10 more books on plot since I snapped this photograph, including half a dozen I bought for my Nook.)

Some of these books I’m devouring from cover to cover in a sort of speed-reading kind of way. This is to give me a fresh perspective on what resources are out there on plot and also to learn different authors’ basic philosophies/methods/strategies at a quick glance so I know what techniques are being taught in the industry today.

Other books only have a chapter or section on plot, but these sections are geared specifically to children’s stories and children’s writers. Here’s a list of the how-to-write children’s books I own that address plot in some way:

Creating Characters Kids Will Love
by Elaine Marie Alphin

How to Write a Children’s Book and Get It Published
by Barbara Seuling

How to Write a Novel for Young Readers and Get It Published
by Kathryn Falk and Cindy Savage

Nonfiction for Children: How to Write It, How to Sell It
by Ellen E.M. Roberts
The Way to Write for Children
by Joan Aiken

Picture Writing: A New Approach to Writing for Kids and Teens
by Anastasia Suen

The Business of Writing for Children
by Aaron Shepard

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Publishing Children’s Books
by Harold D. Underdown

The Everything Guide to Writing Children’s Books
by Lesley Bolton

Writing Children’s Books for Dummies
by Lisa Rojany Buccieri and Peter Economy

Writing for Children and Teenagers
by Lee Wyndham

Writing Irresistible Kidlit: The Ultimate Guide to Crafting Fiction for Young Adult and Middle Grade Readers
by Mary Kole

Writing Juvenile Stories and Novels
by Phyllis A. Whitney

Writing Short Stories for Young People
by George Edward Stanley

Yes! You Can Learn How to Write Children’s Books, Get Them Published, and Build a Successful Writing Career
by Nancy I. Sanders (me!)

Yes! You Can Learn How to Write Beginning Readers and Chapter Books
by Nancy I. Sanders (me!)

You Can Write Children’s Books
by Tracey E. Dils

You Can Write Children’s Books Workbook
by Tracey E. Dils

Do you know of any other how-to-write children’s books I haven’t listed here that have a section or chapter on plot? Or are exclusively about plot? Please share so we can look at those, too!


  1. Thanks for sharing your list of resources, Nancy! 🙂

    • You’re welcome, Tracy! Glad this is a helpful list.

  2. Hi Nancy, I found a few books on my shelves that you might like:
    The Giblin Guide to Writing Children’s Books by James Cross Giblin
    What’s Your Story? A Young Person’s Guide to Writing Fiction by Marion Dane Bauer
    How to Write Plots that Sell by F.A. Rockwell
    Hope these help. Chris

    • What great books to add to this list, Chris!!! Thanks for looking and also for sharing.

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