Thursday, March 6, 2014

Arrggh - Rules

It's great having a little one if you're a childrens' book writer. I get to go to the library all the time because she has book reports to do. And what a fun thing that is. 

We found a book that is pure delight. "Patti Cake and Her New Doll" by Giff, illustrated by Bryant. The story is simple yet beautiful and lots of fun. 

As always, I can't read a book without doing a bit of editing, perusing, checking out stuff. The author uses adverbs. Now, you know I used to use adverbs. I loved adverbs till I went to school and discovered that publishers don't like adverbs. At least, publishers in the USA. (I've got a writer friend in Russia who says they LOVE adverbs. Oh well.)

The adverbs in this sweet children's book are perfect. They serve a purpose. I'm sure the publisher saw the import of the adverbs. My favorite is - greatly dark. The child's new room is described as greatly dark. It just works perfectly. The doll the child finds lives in a greatly dark box. 

I suppose it's the voice. Greatly dark is something I can see this child using. There are other adverbs in the book, like frizzly hair and sparkly dress. They all are something I could see my little one saying and using. 

I suppose there are always exceptions to the rules. I let an adverb slide by now and again. If it works.

I got a nice rejection back today for 'Sorrysorrysorry' - I'm still learning to process rejections and not get disheartened. I called my editor and told her. She told me, in a sweet voice, to suck it up and keep writing and keep sending. So much for a pity party. I was ready. Really I was.

Life is courage.


  1. As I was writing the other day, I found myself using an adverb. I actually use them a lot, but I noticed I was using one this time and thought about not doing so. Then I said to myself, who care? And used the adverb anyway. ;-) Good for you if you can stick to the rules (except when breaking the rule is better)!

  2. You are a hoot. And I bet you used it perfectly and I'll love it when I see it! PS - saw you posted some stories. Made me happy to read them.