Why Write for Children?

Rabbit - balloonOver on Nathan Bransford’s blog (possibly my most favourite blog in the stratosphere) he’s had a guest blogger talk about why she writes for children.  She has given one of the most intelligent, eloquent and apt responses to such a question I think I’ve ever come across, and managed to capture everything that I feel so strongly about as a children’s writer.  Here’s a small taste of what she said:

I love the whimsy in children’s books. I love the saturated emotions, the dealing with real issues without overcomplicating them and over thinking them. I love how dark children’s books can be, how the stakes can often be life and death. And yet despite these elements I love how unsentimental children’s books are (contrary to popular belief of some writers who think children’s books must be morality tales, all sugary sweet; kids for the most part don’t put up with that nonsense). Children’s books don’t have time to revel in their self-importance. Kids are a tough audience and they’ll turn their backs if the story is less than stellar.

Her name is Adrienne Kress, and I really suggest you pop on over and check it out for yourself.  Enjoy.

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4 Responses to “Why Write for Children?”


  1. 1 Julie Nickerson January 16, 2009 at 10:33 am

    Hi Kath,

    I enjoyed reading this post this morning as well. I liked Adrienne’s comment that:

    “Children are so much more willing just to sit back and enjoy the story, instinctively understanding that not everything has to have an explanation and that, in fact, sometimes a lack of explanation makes the story that much more fun.”

    To me, that pretty much sums up why I enjoy writing for children.

  2. 2 Katherine Battersby January 21, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    I like that quote too, Jules. It’s funny that I often hear writers say they wouldn’t like writing for children because they would feel too limited, and yet I feel the complete opposite: I feel that because I write for children, I am liberated.

  3. 3 tara January 22, 2009 at 5:21 am

    I also love Nathan’s blog but I obviously don’t read it often enough because I missed this guest post. Thanks for pointing it out. It’s all so true!

  4. 4 Katherine Battersby January 22, 2009 at 9:25 am

    That’s ok Tara! I think Nathan’s the rock star of agents. I can imagine him getting mobbed at writer’s festivals because of that blog :)


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About this Blog…

A blog of ramblings about the world of writing and illustrating for children, by an author / illustrator who might just have a thing for rabbits.

Katherine's picture books, 'Squish Rabbit' and 'Brave Squish Rabbit', are out with Viking (Penguin, US) and UQP (Australia). Please e-mail if you would like her to blog about something in particular.

All text & images  Katherine Battersby

Released Sept 2012:

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