Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Felicity


It's Writing Wednesday. Renowned picture book writer and children's book editor Charlotte Zolotow (read about her here and visit her website here) was once quoted as having said that books for young children must have felicity. One of the dictionary definitions of felicity is "something that causes happiness." Seems simple, doesn't it? But it is so fundamental that it's worth musing about. Does your manuscript "cause happiness?" Is it joyful? Is it uplifting? Even books which have serious subject matter should leave a young child with hope and an understanding of goodness in the world. After writing a story, we need to be able to evaluate whether or not it is actually successful. Asking if it has a hefty dollop of felicity would be a good place to start. Felicity--we might want to put that on a sticky note and keep it handy.

2 comments:

Anne said...

This is so simple, yet so profound! Thank you for the gentle reminder of what our true purpose is: to spread a little happiness here and there. I am enjoying your "school" for picture book writers so very much. Thank you.

Andrea Zimmerman said...

Thanks, Anne. I heard this C.Z. quote many years ago and have kept it as my primary guiding principle for making picture books.

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