Writing SF For Kids

Is writing science fiction or fantasy for younger markets really different than writing for adults?
Well...
Yes and No.
It's true that children's lit, especially for early readers, can follow a simpler format than mainstream fiction.
But...

Everything you know about writing, all the rules, guidelines and advice you've been given before still applies. You have to establish a convincing background, filled with characters the reader cares about, facing difficult challenges, and rising to the occasion to resolve the plot.
And you have to do it all in less than two thousand words!

That's seven or eight pages. If you're dealing with middle grade or YA magazines. Write for a market younger than this and expect word-counts lower than 1000 words. Some even demand the story be complete in 300 words.

On the plus side of the equation, once you have the story firmly in your mind, you can easily turn out a finished story in one or two writing sessions. And the kids magazines pay very well, generally more per word than comparable adult markets. Selling to a major children's magazine can bring the author between 150.00 to 300.00 dollars, and some pay far in excess of that. So, if you think you have what it takes to write for kids, here are a few pointers.
 

Dead grandmother stories. Talking animals. Scary witches who turn out to be kindly old ladies. Editors have seen them all. Try to be original.
  Think back to the stories and books, even the movies, that shaped your life. Now think about the lives you may be shaping. Give kids your very best. They deserve it.

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