As a children’s author, I’m often pleased to find that I’ve inspired children and adults to write children’s stories of their own. A question they wonder is what exactly makes a good children’s book. Whether you’re a children’s author, illustrator, parent who reads to your child, or someone who is shopping for a children’s book to give to a cherished child, it’s important to know the components of a good children’s literature. This question perhaps can’t be easily answered, as delightful children’s books come in all shapes, sizes, and varieties, but it’s worth taking a look at it.
Even before I became the mother of three children, I had a profound interest in children’s books and at the age of sixteen began writing kids books of my own. There was something that drew me to the magical storybooks which I grew to love as a child but never grew to forget as I got older. Finally, after my children were grown, I decided to turn a lifelong dream into reality as I decided to write a story that I would publish. It was a story about a dragon named Danny and his adventures with his little companion, Skipper, and it was called Danny the Dragon Meets Jimmy, the first book of an entire series, which even includes a soon-to-be-released Danny the Dragon Cookbook. As I wrote the story, I grew to understand what makes a children’s story truly enchanting for its readers—the young and young at heart alike.
In the end, enduring children’s literature can’t be replicated according to any formula, although points such as a charming protagonist, unique, rhythmic language, and bold, colorful illustrations, will always remain important. Whether a children’s story truly captivates the imaginations of children and adults alike, ultimately depends upon a quality that is perhaps as elusive and magical as the imagination itself.