Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Take My Picture Book Class From Your Front Porch!

Howdy Campers!  

My fabulous 2019 class with some of their favorite picture books
helps me celebrate my 20th year teaching in UCLA Extension Writers' Program

My 10-week Beginning Picture Book class begins Wednesday, 9/30/20 to 12/9/20 from 3-6pm PST. I'd love to see you in one of those friendly squares. If you're interested, sign up SOON, enrollment's limited. More info at the very bottom of this post.

Welcome to another...

I've been feeling breathless about teaching virtually (see Margaret's wonderful One Word poem on this topic) and yesterday my generous UCLA Extension Writers' Program colleague, Adam McOmber, who also teaches in the Vermont College of Fine Arts, administered virtual oxygen to me. As so many of you know, the amount of stuff to learn can be freaking overwhelming. But with Adam's help (and the help of my wonderful Program Rep, Ashley Griggs) I'm finally getting it.

Deep breath.

Today's WWW comes from an exercise Adam uses in his novel writing class, which is also a great prompt for picture writers and for poets, with a little tweaking.
photo of Adam McOmber by Ryan Bakerink

He gives each student one chapter of a book. After they've read it, he asks: what are three inspirations you got from this book?

For picture writers:

1) Read a picture book.

2) Write down three things in this book that might inspire a new picture book or inspire you to rewrite an existing manuscript in a completely different way.


For poets:

1) Read a poem.

2) Write down three things the poet does that might inspire a new poem or inspire you to rewrite an existing poem.

Try this!  And please let me know how it goes. I really want to know. 

Writing the Children's Picture Book

photo of April Halprin Wayland (and Steve, the guy who took her on her first date) by Sonya Sones

when? 10 Wednesdays, 3pm to 6pm PST, 9/30 to 12/9 (no meeting 11/11)

where? Anywhere!

Designed for beginning picture book writers, this fun, fast-paced course surveys the genre's breathtaking possibilities, exploring its art, craft, and publishing practices (what are editors looking for?). You'll compare a wide variety of picture book structures, characters, and themes, and learn how to use voice, poetic and muscular language, point-of-view, repetition, and more. Through a balance of lecture, writing assignments, feedback, and the 10 books you read each week, you'll gain a clear sense of your own writing strengths, the ability to give and receive valuable critiques, and knowledge of the submission process--all in a nurturing community of writers.
April Halprin Wayland is the author of seven picture books, including More Than Enough: A Passover Story (Dial), It’s Not My Turn to Look for Grandma! (Knopf), and New Year at the Pier: A Rosh Hashanah Story(Dial), named Best Jewish Picture Book and winner of the Sydney Taylor Gold Book Award. Ms. Wayland won the Myra Cohn Livingston Award for Girl Coming In for a Landing: A Novel in Poems and has won seven poetry awards from the SCBWI. She is a recipient of the UCLA Extension Outstanding Instructor Award in Creative Writing.
Our Students Say it Best!
“Not only is April some kind of genius of rhyme and language, but she is a fabulous instructor—clear, endlessly inventive, and no-nonsense. I have learned more than I thought possible and had a great time doing it."

"Every class the three hours flew by.”

"She presented a great combination of whimsy, encouragement and discipline that I thought was the perfect tone for beginners like me."

37609: Picture Book I WRITING-X 441.1; 3 Credits; Writers' Program: (310)
                                   Enrollment limited.

posted by April Halprin Wayland, with the help of Eli and Monkey ~


Carmela Martino said...

What a great exercise, April! Thanks for sharing. And good luck with your class!

April Halprin Wayland said...

Thanks, Carmela!