Posted by: nancyisanders | March 30, 2015

Challenge: Write a Chapter Book in One Month

Chapter Book Challenge 2015 Badge sm

The end of the month is in sight! How did you do with CHABOOCHA, the Chapter Book Challenge to write a chapter book in just one month? I want to give a big thank you to Becky Fyfe, our fearless leader and coordinator of this yearly event.

If you’re not yet done or even close to finishing, don’t despair. Just pick up where you left off and go for the finish line!

And if you’ve been following along here on my blog and have been using THE RED FLYER ROLLER COASTER as your mentor text, it’s time to finish up your manuscript and submit it.

For starters, let’s talk about editing your manuscript. CLICK HERE to read an awesome (and fun) checklist by Lee Wardlaw for editing and revising.

Let’s also talk about finalizing your manuscript. It needs a chapter title for each chapter and also Table of Contents at the front of your book. Don’t worry about page numbers for your table of contents. You won’t know that until the book is typeset and illustrations are added in.

Go over the submission checklist from the last time we submitted a nonfiction early reader to Kaeden Books to make sure you have all your ducks in a row.

Go ahead and type up your cover letter. (Especially remember to include your SASE and the extra fun, super-duper strategy I recommend in the cover letter.)

And then pop it in an envelope and submit it in the mail.

Then dance a happy dance. Pick up your favorite feline writing buddy, kiss him on his furry little head and say, “We did it!” (Well, actually, you did it. He just shed furry hairs all over it and took a nap on the envelope after you addressed it and put it on the counter to be there when you’re ready to go to the post office.)

And then get ready!!!!! Our next writing adventure here on my blog will be to write an early chapter book and submit it to a publisher who offers royalty contracts to their authors. (Think 10,000 words or less. You can do this!)

We’re going to take our time. No rushing for this next adventure. We’ll just complete one task at a time.

We’re going to go step by step along the journey. No questions left unanswered…All you gotta do is ask them!

I’ve had a number of chapter books published with publishers big and small–both nonfiction and fiction! I’ve been flown to a publishing house to meet with their editor and marketing and series creator to brainstorm outlines for 3 chapter books so I’ll be sharing firsthand and insider experiences and more on how to create and write a chapter book from beginning to successful end.

So if you didn’t have the chance to write a chapter book this month because of your crazy schedule or you just weren’t sure where to start, plan to join in on the upcoming fun!!!!!
(I hope you’ll join in. You’ll be happy you did. And we’ll be happy you did too!)


  1. Hi Nancy,
    Congrats on finishing in time πŸ™‚
    Okay, I think I want to take the leap and participate along with you.
    So….Are you targeting Kaeden Books again? Do you have an idea in mind already?
    Do you have a mentor book already in mind?
    And because I am new and feel foolish asking this, but….I followed along as you did the early chapter book. I am curious as to how you got your idea from using “The Red Flyer Roller Coaster” to writing about an abandoned raccoon?
    I ordered the two books you recommended, so I will be able to sign up soon for mg/ya πŸ™‚

    • Oh yay Kathy! I’m so glad you’re going to follow along and PARTICIPATE!!!! And please don’t feel foolish. Ask ANY question you ever need to. Here are the answers to this comment:
      No, I’m not targeting Kaeden Books this time. This time we’ll target publishers who offer royalty-based contracts. And yes, I already have a mentor text in mind (I read it last week) but I’m not firmly decided on that yet.
      And here’s how I got my idea for the abandoned raccoon. THE RED FLYER ROLLER COASTER is about a child’s first ride on a roller coaster. I wanted to write about a child’s first experience and thought it would be fun to write about a child getting his first pet. Then I brainstormed a list of ideas for a first pet. My favorite on my list was finding an abandoned raccoon and helping raise it to release back into the woods. For our upcoming project, don’t worry about an idea yet if you don’t have one. I’ll walk you through that process!

  2. Ahhh, got it! I can’t wait to be able to see the final product of your story when it comes out πŸ™‚
    I am definitely an animal lover…so I can’t wait to read it πŸ™‚ (Is it going to make me cry?)

    I am excited to learn what I can from this new adventure πŸ™‚

    Thank you Nancy! πŸ™‚

    • I’m so excited that YOU’RE excited, Kathy!!!

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