One Writer’s Journey

September 24, 2013

3 Reasons to Write Children’s Nonfiction

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Come visit my classroom at WOW! to find out about writing Nonfiction for Children and Young Adults. Click the button to find out more.

As much as I love writing fiction, nonfiction is definitely my focus.  If you don’t write children’s nonfiction, here are three things that you should know.

  1. Editors get more fiction than nonfiction.  Most of the editors that I’ve spoken to tell me that they get a larger number of fiction manuscripts than nonfiction.  A lot of writers don’t want the hassle of having to do all the research involved in nonfiction.  But by writing only fiction, they guarantee that they face greater competition for fewer opportunities.
  2. Many publishers, especially magazines, use more nonfiction than fiction.  Survey several of your favorite magazines and note how much fiction they use.  Then compare it to the amount of nonfiction.  Nonfiction is almost always in greater demand.  Part of this is because there are so many types of nonfiction, but the good news for nonfiction writers is that they face less competition for a larger number of opportunities.
  3. Research once, write two or three times.  Do enough research when you research one piece on a topic, and you can gather enough material for two or three noncompeting pieces of nonfiction.  How is this possible?  Right now, I am working on a picture book on prayer.  It is a broad survey, touching briefly on many topics.  An in-depth piece about one particular prayer might be suitable for one religious magazine while a prayer shawl pattern would work for another.

If writing nonfiction sounds like something you want to try, I am teaching a class on Writing Nonfiction for Children and Young Adults through October and November.  Check out this link to find out the details.

–SueBE

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2 Comments »

  1. I think you might have meant that editors get more fiction than nonfiction for number 1? Anyhow, great post! I love research, and nonfiction children’s writing can be fun, too.. 🙂

    Comment by Xina Marie Uhl — September 24, 2013 @ 2:45 am | Reply

    • Obviously, I need to get a copy editor. That is exactly what I meant! Thank you for catching my error, which I have now corrected. Sheesh.

      Comment by suebe — September 24, 2013 @ 2:49 am | Reply


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