Writing for Children

My daughter is revising for a French test and her brother for a Latin test.
I am revising my completed young adult novel.
While the grade my kids will get will probably match their amount of work, I have no guarantee that the hours I’m putting on this new story will lead to publication.
Sometimes I panic. I am an adult woman who spends most of her spare time writing fiction for young people. I invent people who won’t ever exist, plots that won’t ever happen. Most of my writing hasn’t been published. Is my life fictional too?
But I glance around me.
My desk is crowded with books. My family library is stacked from floor to ceiling with books written in French and English. My kids’libraries need new shelves. I’ve kept the picture books I read them when they were younger. We still ooh and aah when we find Goodnight Moon and Dr Seuss books.
And above all, I remember a little girl who was shy and afraid of the world. I remember how she felt daring and safe whenever she read The Famous Five or Le Club des Cinq in French and Nancy Drew or Alice in French and Fantomette, her favorite of all.
A world where kids had power, were smarter than adults and succeeded despite obstacles and challenges opened before the little girl’s eyes.
For the time of a book, she shared the adventures of fictional characters closer to her than real people. She couldn’t wait for the next book in the series, in the same way friends can’t wait to see friends after a long summer and are impatient to know about their vacation.
A few days ago I agreed on the third revision an editor asked me for a story. Not only her suggestions improved the manuscript, the revision process reminded me that the reason I write for children is because of the little girl I was once.

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