What Makes a Great Picture Book Writing Tip #4
Pull Readers in Early with an Engaging Plot
Too often beginning writers delay the introduction of their story’s
plot or conflict. Delaying that introduction can cause readers to
quickly lose interest and not bother reading any further. A great
picture book pulls the reader quickly into the story by introducing
early on the problem faced by the main character – typically on the
first spread and preferably on the very first line.
I WANT MY HAT BACK by Jon Klassen is a perfect example of this. In the very first sentence we learn the bear’s problem. His hat is gone. The second sentence builds on the conflict telling us the bear wants it back. This immediate introduction to the story’s plot pulls readers in quickly and has them turning page after page until they know how the problem ultimately gets resolved.
Of course, even worse than not introducing the conflict of the story early, is not introducing it at all. A great picture book needs an engaging plot and it needs to be introduced as early as possible.
- What Makes a Great Picture Book Tip #1
- What Makes a Great Picture Book Tip #2
- What Makes a Great Picture Book Tip #3