Lindsay Bayer

Children's Author, Child/Family Yoga Instructor, Curriculum Developer, Education Consultant

Read the Books you Want to Write – Children’s Book Journal

I am a firm believer that reading is a key component in the process of writing well. This concept has always been in the back of my mind because I love books, but it was firmly implanted in my mind during a writing course in grad school. It was drilled into me and my fellow classmates that writing (and editing, re-writing, fine-tuning and writing some more) forces the author to be in tune with communicating layers of humanity and emotion within a piece of written work. Because this is the case, it only follows that authors become more emotionally invested in the books they read. Like I said, I’ve always had this in the back of my mind, but the idea was reignited for me this week as I was reading Picture Writing by Anastasia Suen.

In the first chapter of the book, Suen discussed the “whole-brain process” of writing, which is invigorated by READING. She states that it is especially beneficial for writers to read the books they long to write. Recently I have become so involved in the processes of writing and editing and submitting that I’ve forgotten to be a reader. I read a lot to Stella, but my mind is in a different place when I’m reading to my daughter; I’m a mom first and I’m concentrating on Stella’s reactions to the stories and pictures. So…this week…I went to the library…by myself…grabbed a handful of children’s books…hunkered down in a chair in the corner of the building…and read.

Suen also discusses the importance of listing or journaling the books an author reads. I LOVE lists, so I was all over this one. So…without further ado…here’s the start of my children’s book reading journal; to keep me accountable to be a READER and provide ideas for new books to share with children in the lives of others.

  • This Jazz Man by Karen Ehrhardt
  • Plant a Kiss by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
  • Hand Book by Jeff Newman
  • We’re Going on a Picnic by Pat Hutchins
  • Little Pea by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
  • Buster by Denise Fleming
  • Fireflies for Nathan by Shulamith Levey Oppenheim
  • Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Eric Carle
  • It’s My Birthday by Helen Oxenbury