1. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2

    How can I get a children's story made into a book?

    Discussion in 'Self-Publishing' started by purpleroad, Jun 20, 2020.

    I've written a children's story for my son. He's five. How can I get it put into proper book with illustrations?

    If I could get it published that would be great too. It's called " Bert the Attention Seeking Cat" or "Bert- the cat that didn't like to be ignored".

    It has a number of situations where he's ignored and consequently does something silly to get attention. There are three possible things he does and my son has to guess what he did then turn the page to see what he actually did and what happened.

    E.g. he was being ignored at a party so did he

    1/jump onto all the food on a table

    2/climb down the chimney

    3/meow

    My son has to guess which of the three he did.

    Based on a real pet I had
     
    Aceldama and Justin Attas like this.
  2. Richach

    Richach Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    May 21, 2019
    Messages:
    587
    Likes Received:
    636
    Location:
    Birmingham Uk
    Sounds great!

    Find beta readers, proofreaders, illustrator, editor, publisher.

    Basically that is going to be the process. If you decide that you don't want to take it that seriously and you just want the book for your son. Go find a local printer, they would treat it as a booklet/brochure. Even better if you can speak to a major printer (they print for all the other printers) they will have endless contacts for graphic designers, illustrators who may be charmed by the idea and be willing to help for a fee. Think you have lots of research to do and if you need any help with the process, the members here will help or put you on the right track.

    Good Luck!
     
    purpleroad and Aceldama like this.
  3. Justin Attas

    Justin Attas Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2019
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    81
    If writing the narrative/finding an illustrator isn't on the table... I'd say start surveying ghostwriting hubs. Places like fiverr or writerswork are decent. As a former ghostwriter, I can tell you people would be more than willing to help you turn the spoken word into a book. It may be a bit costly, but you can negotiate by allowing the ghostwriter's name to appear on the cover with yours. Sort of a co-written scenario. I'd say that's your best bet. From there, you can either pitch the book to a traditional publisher/indie publisher or self-publish. DM me if you have more questions. I've spent a good volume of time nose deep in research on this stuff.
     
    purpleroad likes this.
  4. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2

    Thanks. I'll search for a beta reader or proof reader etc. Could someone steal your idea though ? lol. Want someone to perhaps re-phrase some of the wording perhaps or re-write it slightly if they felt that was better. Perhaps give me some ideas on whether some of the scenarios the cat gets into could be changed or made more amusing. Two actually really happened!

    Any recommendations for a beta reader or proof reader?
     
  5. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2

    I've used fiverr to design one of my business cards, and it was very cheap for what I got done.

    Thanks
     
  6. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2
    I checked fiverr and there are a lot of ghostwriters with varying prices. This all sounds great- I'll contact one soon
     
  7. Richach

    Richach Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    May 21, 2019
    Messages:
    587
    Likes Received:
    636
    Location:
    Birmingham Uk
    Might I draw your attention to the workshop that is run on this site. Click workshop, children's stories and I would recommend looking at the thread for 'the shoe.' as well as many others. The workshop is an Aladdin's cave for aspiring writers, and much can be learned from taking a look or even better taking part.

    You are welcome to share work there and get feedback.

    In regards to someone stealing your ideas, it is possible but very unlikely IMO. The skill of a writer is in the writing (technique, structure, form) as well as imagination. I don't think it is likely that someone will steal a half baked idea from someone else. I don't mean that to sound rude but it is true.
     
  8. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2016
    Messages:
    18,920
    Likes Received:
    21,889
    Location:
    East devon/somerset border
    Except that our friend is a new member and needs 14 days, 20 posts and 2 crits before he is able to post work for feedback
     
    Richach likes this.
  9. Richach

    Richach Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    May 21, 2019
    Messages:
    587
    Likes Received:
    636
    Location:
    Birmingham Uk
    Good points.
     
  10. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2

    Yeah, actually I don't write fantastically. I wonder if there's someone who can check how it's written too? I'm gonna use fiverr for the animation. Is it worth paying for a more expensive artist?
     
  11. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2
    Hi Justin, so get how the story is written improved then AFTER that worry about the illustrations? Where would I get the illustrations done? Fiverr?
     
  12. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2
    What's a crit?
     
  13. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2016
    Messages:
    18,920
    Likes Received:
    21,889
    Location:
    East devon/somerset border
    a critique - the workshop requires that you offer two critiques on other members work for each piece you request critique on
     
  14. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2
    Thanks
     
  15. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2
    I'm not writer but one of customers is a novelist and gave me the email of a proofreader and graphic designer.
    I'm trying to make a book for my six year old which is less than a thousand words long. I sent it to a proofreader but she said the words needed to be type set and it needed pictures and this wasn't her remit. I then sent it to graphic designer and asked if he could do the type setting and illustrations. He replied by saying-



    Do you have a cutter guide / book template for me to base the artwork on? What publishing company are you going to use? I can speak with directly with the publishers if that makes life easier?

    Illustration wise are you sourcing / supplying or do you have an illustrator lined up to do the illustrations?

    Sorry to bombard you with questions! I need to ask as that allow me to work out my design time and what will be involved on my part

    Thanks

    Not knowing what a book template is etc I just replied with no and asked if he could do it all and contact publisher. He didn't answer the question about typesetting. I've had no reply regarding the cost. To be honest, I'm not sure what a book template is.

    What should I write to him? I'm really just looking to make the book for myself
     
  16. SapereAude

    SapereAude Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2021
    Messages:
    418
    Likes Received:
    243
    Not to belabor the obvious, a book template is a template for a book. That's not intended to be facetious, it's a fact. If you work on a Mac and use Apple Pages, the program comes with templates for about a dozen different types of books. The templates take care of setting up the page layout, selecting fonts appropriate to the genre, and so forth.

    I don't know if there's a template in there for an illustrated children's book. At 1,000 words, I would guess you are looking for something like Dr. Seuss' The Cat in the Hat, with a hand-drawn cartoon occupying maybe half of each page, and the text occupying the other half (or maybe 1/3:2/3). I don't think you'll find a template for such, but I've been wrong before.

    Microsoft Word also includes templates, but none for books. However, you can download all sorts of book templates from the Internet -- do a Google search for "book+templates" (omit the quotation marks). See what comes up. IMHO, all those I have downloaded and opened have been worthless -- literally so bad they should have paid me to even take the time to download them and look at them -- but they are out there and might give you some ideas.

    As to the person you contacted, my guess is that his idea of "graphic designer" means "book designer." That's why you asked if he could do typesetting and illustrations, and he responded by asking who will do the illustrations. What you need is a graphic artist (or maybe just an artist), not a graphic designer.

    What's your mental picture for the book? If each scenario offers three possible choices, would you include a simple, cartoon-like illustration for each choice? I think you would have to -- if you only illustrate the correct choice, that gives away the answer. Or maybe that's the point?

    Are there any colleges or junior colleges near you that offer art courses? You might be able to find a student who would be happy to draw your illustrations to earn a little extra money.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2021
    purpleroad likes this.
  17. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2
    This is SapereAude suggestion which I like for the template-


    I doubt you'll find a template that fits. Based on this, I would see a book that's either square, or rectangular but in a landscape orientation. The right hand pages would have a brief bit of text describing the situation at the top (probably center justtified), with the three cartoons across the bottom of the page.

    Turning the page, you would find the correct cartoon repeated, maybe in a larger size or perhaps in a wider and possibly more detailed version, with the answer text below. Then the right-hand page would introduce the next predicament, with the next three cartoon panels.




    Shall I just send this template idea or actually set it out in this format before sending to graphic designer?
     
  18. SapereAude

    SapereAude Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2021
    Messages:
    418
    Likes Received:
    243
    That's not a "template." That's a rough concept.

    A template is a computer file that already has the page size set, the margins set, the typeface selected, the paragraph styles defined -- all you have to do is start typing, or copy and paste your manuscript text into it.

    I would suggest that you either visit a bricks and mortar book store (preferable) or look at listing for children's books on Amazon and get a feel for book/trim sizes and page layouts. Pick a couple that seem to fit your concept of what you want your book to become, and start from there.

    Then look at the information from a couple of print-on-demand publishers like Amazon KDP, Ingram/Spark, and Blurb to see what page/trim sizes they offer for children's books. They may not all be the same; if not, you will either have to decide which one you want to use (and those are not the only three around), or you'll have to use a page layout that has enough flexibility built in that you can adapt it to different trim sizes.

    You can find Amazon's standard trim sizes here: https://kdp.amazon.com/en_US/help/topic/G201834180

    In a horizontal (landscape) format they don't offer many standard sizes, but they have 8.25" x 6". That might do it. Amazon KDP can also do custom trim sizes -- some of their competitors don't offer custom sizes. I think 8.25 x 6 is a bit small, but you can judge for yourself. A standard sheet of printer/copy paper (in the U.S.) is 8.5 x 11. Fold it in half, tear it along the fold, and you have two pages at 8.5 x 5.5.

    Possibly a square format (which I think I have read somewhere is popular for children's books) at 8.25 x 8.25 or 8.5 x 8.5 would work.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2021
  19. SapereAude

    SapereAude Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2021
    Messages:
    418
    Likes Received:
    243
    Additional thoughts:

    Since you used the word "remit," I am going to assume that you are in the U.K., which means that U.S. paper sizes don't apply. Nonetheless, I think for the book you have in mind a landscape page orientation would work better than a potrait orientation.

    IMHO the easiest way to self-publish a book is Amazon KDP, but the only do paperback, not hard cover. And I'm not sure how long a paperback book would survive a 5- or 6-year old.

    Blurb.com specializes in just the kind of book you appear to have in mind, they offer hard covers ... and they offer a trim size of 10" x 8", which could be about right for the book you want (and for the layout concept I have envisioned).

    https://www.blurb.com/blog/choosing-best-trim-size/

    Blurb offers a book design software called BookWright, which includes templates. It might behoove you to download BookWright and explore it. It might answer some of your questions, and it might also prompt you to ask more questions. You have to start somewhere.
     
    purpleroad likes this.
  20. SapereAude

    SapereAude Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2021
    Messages:
    418
    Likes Received:
    243
    Let's see if this works ...

    upload_2021-6-8_10-48-43.png

    That's my book design concept. The lines around the top and bottom are only there to show a margin around the page -- they wouldn't be there in an actual book. The images would all be drawn by the same artist, of course, so the cat would always look like the same cat, and you wouldn't be copying someone else's images. This is just a conceptual mock-up.

    What do you think?
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2021 at 8:16 AM
    Steve Rivers and purpleroad like this.
  21. purpleroad

    purpleroad New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2020
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    2

    Looks good. I'll need to look into all this more. All based on a real cat I had as a child.

    I'm in the UK.

    I clicked on the Blub link you gave and this one seems good-

    STANDARD LANDSCAPE 10×8 in (25×20 cm)
    Common industry uses: Photography collections, children’s books, history books, textbooks, photography, illustration

    Best for: Content with a lot of horizontal images. Since more images and charts are often landscape (wider than they are tall), the shape of the book works well with the shape of the content. There is plenty of page room for both words and pictures without unnecessary white space around photos perpendicular to the shape of the page.


    I look to download and this
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2021 at 10:33 AM
  22. SapereAude

    SapereAude Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2021
    Messages:
    418
    Likes Received:
    243
    I zeroed in on Blurb's 8" x 10" page, too.

    Feel free to send that page layout suggestion to your graphic artist consultant if you wish. The rest of the concept is that the image I created is the right-hand page. Turn the page, and a larger (and perhaps more detailed?) version of the correct image will be on that page along with a simple paragraph repeating the text of the correct answer.

    Please let us know as the project moves forward. I, for one, am obviously interested. I'm a cat lover, so it strikes me as a very cute little book.
     
    purpleroad likes this.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice