Joy Moore Loop-De-Loops

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Posted by Joy Moore on June 13, 2016 at 7:15 AM Comments comments (0)

I'm please to introduce my latest story: PINK RIDING HOOD AND THE WARTY STICK MONSTER.

This story spins the tale of Little Red Riding Hood in zany directions.  Blossom hops and sings through the wood when she meets a hungry and warty stick creature. All Blossom sees is the monsters goodness.

You can check the story out here:

Overcoming Common Pitfalls in Picture Book Writing

Posted by Joy Moore on November 22, 2015 at 7:15 AM Comments comments (1)

1. Focus. When the writer does not know what the story is really about it causes meanderings. It causes you to lose the POV. It is fine if you don’t know what the story is about when you first begin to write it. But, you do need to know when you send it out. If story is tight it allows you wonderful opportunities to put in details and not be generic.


2. Know your audience. Children want to read about issues that affect them. They was a character they can identify with. They want to read about other kids and their problems. The story needs to be told from a childlike POV.


3. If the problem is a scary one. If the issue or tension is too difficult for the child to read about, use animals. It will be easier for the child to read about an animal going through the difficulty than a child.


4. Leave hints in the ‘words’ for the illustrator rather than giving illustrator notes. Trust the illustrator. They will do an amazing job and often go beyond your expectations.


5. Empower children. Children are used to having adults telling them what to do. Children often feel vulnerable. Have the character in the story solve their own problem. If the child does not solve their own problem you will have a hard time selling you book. If you have a parent in your story make sure you really need them there. Otherwise kill the parent. Or make the parent childlike.


6. Show don’t tell. You will lose the POV of the story. You lose the opportunity for character development. You allow the reader to write your story for you. Think of what you want to tell. Think of a scene to show the feeling. Then act the scene out. Often times a thesaurus will help. Using specific verbs will help. Make the scene dramatic. Build the scene moment by moment.


7. Openings. You must hook the editor in the first paragraph or you are dead meat.


8. Language. Think of the story as a long poem. Show rhythm in the language. Make it easy to read out loud. Give it musicality. First work out the plot. After the pot is finished spend a good amount of time on the language.


9. Tension. Make the tension go from hard to harder to hardest. Or funny to funnier to funniest. Three times have them fail. Give them a dark moment. Go to the unexpected place or an exaggerated place. Have the character react to it in a strong dramatic way. Then the resolution.


10. Never send out a manuscript without making a dummy first.


The story behind the story

Posted by Joy Moore on April 1, 2014 at 4:35 PM Comments comments (4)
Some of us are born in an extraordinary enviournement. We don’t know it. At first. It could be just about anything. 
The only hearing child of a deaf family. The only normal sized child of a dwarf family. The only shy child of a prominent family. 
The scenarios are unending. And for the first part of our lives that is OUR normal. 
The story of an extraordinary fish was born out of this idea. 

Comet was born in a crooked pond uniquely adapted for his family of itchy colorful fish. 
But Comet holds a dark secret. He’s tired of his exceptional world. 
All he wants is to be ordinary. One day he ventures out into the mainstream full of 
anonymity and dangers. 

It takes finding a friend just like him for Comet to realize his 
peculiar family is a gift. 

Because of them he has an ability and finesse to navigate both worlds.


My first review.

Posted by Joy Moore on March 16, 2014 at 8:30 AM Comments comments (0)

From fellow author Sherry. I hope you will chick it out.

The Journey of Wiggle-Wiggle

Posted by Joy Moore on March 5, 2014 at 4:15 PM Comments comments (6)

The story of Comet began its life in the middle of 2010. In the process of writing, I fell in love with a word. Catawampus. It plopped its way into the manuscript and refused to leave.

So began the twists and turns of my steep learning curve.

Right away the personalized rejections started to roll in. They included comments such as:

Never say you are a new author.

Do not tell me your critique group loved it.

We would like see more from you as you grow.

You did not put in a SASE so we are mailing you our rejection from our own postage.

This story needs something quirky.

This story needs an unexpected twist.

I paid for a critique from my SCBWI regional advisor and multi-published author Connie Heckert. She helped greatly and the rewrites began anew. Once again, the manuscript was sent out into the stratosphere.

One evening, while eating out, conversation was flying around the table about the need to scratch itchy spots. With that the idea for a quirky factor was born.

Months passed and I paid for a critique at a SCBWI conference. A well-known author Jill Esbaum helped me with the critique. She told me that the story almost made her cry.

The rejections continued. Still, I didn’t give up. Words flowed through my body. They filled my head. They bonked back and forth to get out.

About a year later I won a free critique from the generous Jean Reidy. She had this to say. “Who and what is this story about? If you had to summarize your picture book in one sentence, what would you say? I ask this, Joy, because that one sentence summary is used at multiple levels of the publishing process – to pitch an agent, an editor, an acquisitions team, a sales team, on a book jacket. What would that pitch say? I tried to come up with a pitch for your story myself and found that there were actually several stories going on here. Is it about an itchy fish? Is it about finding your way home? Is it about bravery and encountering the beast? Is it about friendship? To say it’s about all these things will get you into trouble, because you have less than 500 words to tell your story.”

I took her critique to heart, applied her suggestions.

Then I receive a request from MeeGenius for edits. They told me that the word catawampus could not be used as a noun. I thought they wanted me to take it out. So I did.

Finally, in January 2014 WIGGLE-WIGGLE, SCRATCH-SCRATCH, ITCH-ITCH-ITCH debuted. When I saw the finished product, I had another surprise coming. They had put my much loved word, catawampus, back.

It had been close to three years from the time the story was first written till the time the contract was signed. The manuscript went through major upheavals. A fare sum was paid to get it polished. Will it equal out in the end? Time will tell. What have I learned in the interim? Patience. Professionalism. And always share the credit.

I hope you can check my story out.