Posted by: nancyisanders | March 2, 2015

Challenge: Write a Chapter Book in 1 Month

Chapter Book Challenge 2015 Badge sm

ChaBooCha is officially happening and I hope you’re having fun so far!

I just wanted to update you on what I’ve been doing so far so you can try out some of the strategies I’m doing to see if they work for you, too.

I’m following my calendar, so after reading my mentor text, I brainstormed ideas for my main character.

Here’s how that brainstorming session went:
1) First I made a list of some early chapter book or easy reader main characters that have been popular with kids in kindergarten through second grade. I just made a short list, but here’s what I came up with:

Cam Jensen
Nate the Great
Junie B. Jones
The Magic Tree House
Ramona the Pest
The Imagination Station series with Patrick and Beth

2) I tried to think of qualities that kids like about these characters and why they appeal to young readers.

The main reason I stopped making this list was because an idea popped into my head at this point for a character of my own.

3) So I just spent an hour or so letting my brain “play” with the idea. It actually was in a helpful mood this afternoon and gave me lots of ideas including conversations my character might have, background stories of my character, and also information about my main character’s family members. During this time my brain was popping with plot ideas and setting ideas, too, so even though I won’t officially spend time on those topics until another day this week (see the calendar) I went ahead and jotted down all the ideas that came to me so I could explore them more later.

After spending this chunk of time with my potential character, I decided to choose him as the one I’ll write about this month.

I want to encourage you not to stress too much about this decision for your character. Just pick one that seems good for now. If at the end of the month it’s not your favorite decision, you can try out a different character in a brand new story.

Whether or not you were able to generate a lot of ideas about your main character, to help you brainstorm more about your main character plus tomorrow when you brainstorm your cast of characters, visit the site of my feline writing buddies, Writing According to Humphrey and Friends.

You’ll find some helpful activities you can do to create a strong character that has potential for a series. This is the kind of character Kaeden Books is looking for in their early chapter books, so that’s my goal for the CHABOOCHA challenge this month.

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