How I Designed Twee' Books with Adult Appeal,
...so They Wanted To Read Them Out Loud
by Susie E. Caron (c) 11/02/2014
I understood from the beginning that I wanted my picture books to be read out loud. To do that they had to appeal to adults. Usually an adult selects picture books for children. So I knew they had to be visually attractive and interesting. In addition, I remembered that reading to my children usually meant re-reading their favorite books over and over and over again. So I had to make them fun to read out loud.
Part I: In this article I explain how I designed Twee' books to appeal to adults.
Writing picture book stories that fascinate children was the easy part. However, I really wanted to make Twee' appeal to adults by making them visually attractive, interesting and fun to read out loud. I knew, if I didn't do these things then my books would not get into homes. They would not be read, enjoyed and then they couldn't help kids and parents cuddle and talk to each other. That's why I planned everything about Twee' with adult buyers and readers in mind. These considerations included designing my character Twee', as well as the colors, setting, story lines, and more.
My Character Twee'
Twee' could not just be a 3 branched pine tree. She needed to have movement and expressive feelings and large eyes. Eyes are the windows of our souls. You look into peoples eyes to learn their subtle intentions, feelings and to add deeper meaning to their words. Children learn about who they are from the eyes of their caregivers. So, Twee', as a sort of 'teacher' needed to have wide open eyes. Adults like that too, because Twee's eyes tell them that there is nothing deceitful about Twee'.
I planned for the colors of each Twee' book to be in soft blues and greens. These colors are soothing and attractive to parents and caregivers. At times all kids, and especially active children need cuddle and calming times. Children respond to the colors in Twee'. Adults apparently agree because tell me they read Twee' books at bedtime.
The scenery in Twee' changes as she grows up. This is likely the teacher in me. I planned the environment to change in each book: from an open field, to farms, and then little towns. Young children may like repetition, but I believe that the adults who read each book found these changes more interesting than if I'd kept the setting always the same.
In order for the stories to appeal to adults, I wrote about universal experiences. What adult has not complained about a situation, only to discover that it also made them grow? Twee' (Bk#1) reminds adults of this. What adult hasn't wished for something they didn't have, either personally or in their environment. I Am Twee' (Bk#2) reminds adults of this and gently encourages them to be a bit more content with what they have. What adult hasn't had a dear friend, or family member who later either moved away or was 'lost' in some other way? Twee' for Two (Bk#3) brings out memories and provides a way to 'hold the loved one in their hearts.' Adults have told me Twee' stories remind them of different times in their lives. This is evidence of adult appeal.
I hope you enjoyed Part I of How I designed Twee' to appeal to adults. I also hope you will comment and share on social media. Please return tomorrow to read Part II where I write about how I designed Twee' books so adults will want to read them out loud.
Later this week, I'll detail the benefits of reading out loud and also reading in order to connect and develop a better relationship bond with your kids.
To join me to Launch Twee' for Two on Saturday Nov. 8, 2014, click HERE.
And Always Remember,
Twee' Means You & Me
Susie E Caron
Susie E. Caron MA,
Author, Blogger, Podcaster,
Christian, Wife, & Mother, helps build parent-child relationships, 1 blog, book & podcast at a time.
Welcome! I recently retired from combined careers in teaching, psychotherapy, and parent coaching to spend more time writing.
When I'm not busy creating books or articles, you might find me looking for dark chocolate or riding my beautiful horse Apple in the woods and fields of Vermont.
These articles are for educational and self-help purposes only and are not intended as psychotherapy.
If you experience unusual symptoms or discomfort please see your medical or mental health practitioner.
No patent liability is assumed for use of the information contained. The author disclaims any responsibility for loss or risk for use or application of this material.
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Blog Reviews & Thank You!
July 13 at 7:17pm ·
Just wanted to say that I love your posts about the different ways to connect/relate/understand your child. It has given me a new approach towards understanding my daughter and allowing HER to tell me how she feels instead of me suggesting to her how she should feel. Thanks Susie!