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Kelly Milner Halls

She writes Childrens books.

6/12/06 6:54:51 PM Opening "Chat Log 6/12/06"

W2PSushi: Hi Kelly!
KellyMilnerH: Hi ya!
Rose1533: Hi, Kelly.
KellyMilnerH: HI Rose.
Mcphersontampa: {{{{{{{{{{{KELLYMILNERHALLS}}}}}}}}}}}} my HERO!
KellyMilnerH: Ahhhh...thanks Mcpherson. I feel all hugged and happy.
Beccastrat: Evening all! :-)
Mcphersontampa: <LOVED Albino Animals and Dinosaur Mummies!
KellyMilnerH: You DID? Wow, is that cool or what. Wait until you see the next ones.
KellyMilnerH: Mcphersontampa has actually SEEN two of my books. How cool is that? <grin>
Mcphersontampa: <Didn't just see them...LOVED THEM!
KellyMilnerH: Mcpherson, that makes you MY new hero.
KellyMilnerH: Hi Lyn
LynWriteBk: Hi Kelly, Sushi, Maggie, Angel
W2PSushi: Folks, Tom invited Kelly. To kick off this session, he will now give a formal introduction
PHeeren: Hello, fellow W2P'ers and fellow writers
PHeeren: thanks for coming to this special chat
KellyMilnerH: Thank you for having me, Tom
PHeeren: this is Kelly Milner Halls, whose books about dinosaurs became famous for children worldwide
PHeeren: is that correct, ma'am?
KellyMilnerH: Kids who love dinosaurs, sure Pheeren. : )
PHeeren: welcome to W2P, Kelly
KellyMilnerH: Thanks Pheeren, I'm happy to be here.
W2PSushi: and do you have a kickoff presentation for us?
KellyMilnerH: I can yack for a second, sure...ready for that?
W2PSushi: sounds good! then we'll open the floor to Q&A

KellyMilnerH: I studied journalism at college -- wanted to be Linda Ellerbee, which clearly dates me. I'll save you the trouble, I'm OLD. : ) Nearly 50.
KellyMilnerH: But when I got out of school, and started writing for an adult newspaper, it was boring.
KellyMilnerH: Pot hole stories, meals on wheels.
KellyMilnerH: I wasn't sure that was the kind of writing that would make me happy for a lifetime.
KellyMilnerH: So I worked for the YMCA -- before and after school care and summer camps -- for a while.
KellyMilnerH: It was a job where I could bring my kids. And it was GREAT fun.
KellyMilnerH: In the process, my kids started to read and I had an epiphany.
KellyMilnerH: Someone gets paid for kidstuff -- kids books, kids magazine articles, kids newspaper sections.
KellyMilnerH: I knew I'd found my calling, so I jumped in with both feet.
KellyMilnerH: Was it easy? No. It was hard work. But it COULD have been easier if I'd had ME to help ME.
KellyMilnerH: So I resolved to help new children's writers however I could, and that's why I'm here -- why I speak at conferences, why I mentor people.
KellyMilnerH: I love fiction, write a lot about children's fiction writers. But I love nonfiction.
KellyMilnerH: And I love WEIRD nonfiction best. I tell people I get paid for being weird and it's not far from the truth.
KellyMilnerH: I was a reluctant reader in my youth, so I grew up to write the books I wished I had 40 years ago.
KellyMilnerH: I started with a couple of articles. One was called PISTOL PACKING PALEONTOLOGIST.
KellyMilnerH: It was a good article about a dinosaur expert who also had a law enforcement degree.
KellyMilnerH: He specialized in protecting rare fossils against theft.
KellyMilnerH: Great pictures.
KellyMilnerH: It took me TWO YEARS to sell it...but it wasn't because the piece wasn't good.
KellyMilnerH: It was because I didn't know my kids magazine markets.
KellyMilnerH: When I finally accidentally submitted to the RIGHT magazine, which in this case was Child Digest, they bought it.
KellyMilnerH: Not a word was changed.
KellyMilnerH: I learned in that instant the business of writing was as important as the writing itself.
KellyMilnerH: Give an editor what they want most, and you better your odds at success in children's writing.
KellyMilnerH: I've made a living as a writer ever since, for the most part.
KellyMilnerH: I've taken some strange diversionary branches here and there -- working for iUniverse when the old Writer's Club first sold its soul.
KellyMilnerH: That was interesting.
KellyMilnerH: But for the most part, I have written for kids or about children's writers for the past 15 years, and survived to tell the tale.
KellyMilnerH: I write about what interests me -- and as luck would have it, most of what I like, kids like too.
KellyMilnerH: Dinosaurs, mummies, albino animals, bugs you can eat...that's my home turf. And I wouldn't change it for the world.
KellyMilnerH: NOW should we open it up for questions?

W2PSushi: sounds good
W2PSushi: enthusiastic crowd!
KellyMilnerH: lol
W2PSushi: better use protocol, eh?

KellyMilnerH: Rose, did you have a question?
Rose1533: Which children's authors have you written about
KellyMilnerH: Rose, I've been so lucky in my career. I helped create Kids Reads for the Book Reporter network.
KellyMilnerH: At the time, I had to review 10 books a week and do two interviews a month.
KellyMilnerH: I have interviewed the best of the best, from Eric Carle to Laura Numberoff to William Joyce to David Carter.
Rose1533: Have you done either Kevin Henkes or Kate Duke? (two of my faves)
KellyMilnerH: Avi, Chris Crutcher, Brian Jaques, dozens of writers. It's been like a children's literature course. Yes to Kevin. He was a very gracious man, very shy. No to Kate Duke.
Rose1533: thanks.

Mcphersontampa: Who found the illustrator/photographer for Albino Animals (great pics)?
KellyMilnerH: I wrote about Albino Animals for Scholastic's Science World magazine a year ago. It was a great piece. And it was my job to find the photos for the book.
KellyMilnerH: When I interviewed the experts, I asked if they had photos or knew of photographers with great pictures.
KellyMilnerH: My editor then did the negotiations. The book had a $10,000 photo budget, and it shows. I didn't make QUITE that much on my advance, but maybe someday it'll total out that way.

W2PSushi: You mentioned knowing Chris Crutcher
KellyMilnerH: Very well.
W2PSushi: we've hosted several YA folks but no Children's until now
W2PSushi: what would you say is the 'boundary' between these genres?
W2PSushi: they seem very different.
KellyMilnerH: It's primarily the age of the protagonists, Sushi. YA books have protagonists -- main characters -- 16 or over. Middle grade characters are a bit younger.
KellyMilnerH: And YA tends to have the option of pushing the envelope a little more when it comes to mature content.
KellyMilnerH: Which is why Chris gets banned and why I love to help him fight the bans.
KellyMilnerH: <grin>
WriterOfDreamz: ban fighting...you're my kinda person ;-)
KellyMilnerH: I'm an enemy to censorship.
KellyMilnerH: lol Writer...I'll take on a fight if it's about free speech.
W2PSushi: Been a big hullabaloo in the SF world, regarding an "Asimov's" short story, this week.
KellyMilnerH: See, Crutcher writes gritty stuff because he's been a therapist so many years.
KellyMilnerH: He sees how tough a kids life can be. And the stats, previously posted on the Bush-man's own Health and Human Services website say one in three girls, one in seven boys will be sexually mistreated before the age of 18.
KellyMilnerH: That supports his anecdotal experience.
W2PSushi: yikes
PatGuth: I teach in the inner city of Chicago and boy is that right
PatGuth: Even in elementary school as young as in second grade
KellyMilnerH: Pat, but you're right. You've seen it.
KellyMilnerH: He's writing gritty stories, because too many kids are living gritty lives. And those kids NEED to know they aren't alone, no matter how many people want to pretend bad things never happen.
KellyMilnerH: See? Told you I was a big mouth on that topic.

Mallie1025: Do you write for schools-scholastic and chap books, etc., and what age range?
KellyMilnerH: Mallie, my books fit into that age range, but they're nonfiction.
KellyMilnerH: Not biography.
KellyMilnerH: So they tend to be broken into sections. We are writing for reluctant readers, trying to create a new scale of success.
Mallie1025: Do you sell to schools and how?
KellyMilnerH: I write very much influenced by my magazine history. So when a kid picks up my book, he or she can read 600 words and feel successful. Finished, at least for that moment.
Mallie1025: I read the titanic with a grandson -- you mean like that?
KellyMilnerH: ALBINO ANIMALS was a Scholastic Book Fair selection, so schools buy them there.
KellyMilnerH: And all Darby Creek books are distributed by Lerner, which has strong roots in the school markets.

PHeeren: Kelly, do you think of writing children's books about a child with a disability? I am disabled myself with profound deafness and cerebral palsy and I have a positive impact on my dear w2pers since I first came in 2003 (is it correct
PHeeren: I am writing some stories about disabled young adults based on me
KellyMilnerH: I have, PH because I was 40% deaf when I was a kid. I've written about kids in wheel chairs, I look for kids who succeed however they can.
KellyMilnerH: So yes. That's part of where Albino Animals came from.
KellyMilnerH: I saw an African American albino girl and wondered how lonely she might be -- a minority within a minority.
PHeeren: thanks and I am a volunteer in hospital
KellyMilnerH: I wrote the book so kids like her would have something to hang on to.
KellyMilnerH: One of the best books I've read on CP -- and I tutored a 3rd grader with CP between semesters at college -- is STUCK IN NEUTRAL by Terry Trueman. But more needs to be out there.
KellyMilnerH: Tom, lots of editors are looking for that, so don't give it up.
PHeeren: I am an active hospital volunteer since December 1996 and earned 1000 hrs so far
KellyMilnerH: PHeeren, are there any kid volunteers?
PHeeren: yes
KellyMilnerH: PH, consider profiling one special kid volunteer. Why does he do what he does?

W2PSushi: [dreamz is in Europe -- it must be 3 AM there! ;-D ]
WriterOfDreamz: (it's 3.30!)

ABSHRINK: the hidden you
ABSHRINK: a book my kids read long ago
Rose1533: The Hidden You is the title of a book, I think. Is that it, abe?
KellyMilnerH: Okay ABE...you're saying do I know that book? I don't, but it sounds like a great read. I know my success ratio took leaps when I got in touch with who I really was and wrote from that place.
ABSHRINK: yes read so long ago
ABSHRINK: also "a wrinkle I n time" my kids loved them
KellyMilnerH: ABE, everyone loves that book don't they? Classic.

WriterOfDreamz: There's a movement here being spearheaded by Kids authors for publishers to leave little or no gap between producing work in print, braille and audio so everyone can access it. It's only being extended to existing authors, how important do you feel it is for them to at least consider some older books which aren't so widely available?
KellyMilnerH: Writer, I think people who know the kids should recommend older books of value.
KellyMilnerH: But when it comes to young readers, especially reluctant readers, they have to fall in love with story telling, fiction or nonfiction FIRST.
KellyMilnerH: My nephew read nothing.
KellyMilnerH: Then he read nothing but GOOSEBUMPS.
KellyMilnerH: People said, "Garbage," and I understood it.
WriterOfDreamz: lol
W2PSushi: [my son read a couple of those]
WriterOfDreamz: I used to have a lot of the goosebumps books
KellyMilnerH: But the truth is, he learned to love STORY through GOOSEBUMPS.
KellyMilnerH: He got confidence.
KellyMilnerH: And we went from GOOSEBUMPS to REDWALL in one leap.
KellyMilnerH: Never underestimate the juicy NEW stuff and its power to help kids find their way to old classics.
WriterOfDreamz: well the campaign seems to be proving a success, kids who can't read print are finally getting the treatment they deserve
KellyMilnerH: Hopefully, Writer...and your're right, the old classics count too.

W2PSushi: We are W 2 Publish, so let's talk $$$
KellyMilnerH: Okay Sushi. Go for it.
W2PSushi: what do the magazines pay? The book publishers?
KellyMilnerH: Children's magazines pay BADLY on the whole. I used to juggle twelve articles a month to break even.
W2PSushi: any other sources we ought to know about?
KellyMilnerH: It's getting a little better.
KellyMilnerH: $200 to $600 per article on the whole. $50 to $150 for briefs.
KellyMilnerH: Books, figure on $4000 to $6000 advance for a nonfiction picture book, 9 to 12.
W2PSushi: similar to what SF stories receive
KellyMilnerH: YA gets more, $10,000 for a first YA novel.

Mallie1025: Kelly, I read some chap books geared for 9 + yrs and was surprised by the delicate issues they discussed--drunk fathers, etc.
KellyMilnerH: Mallie, very true.
KellyMilnerH: Mallie, people are writing their truths, and editors are learning that sells.

Mcphersontampa: I recently answered an ad in SCBWI for an illustrator, it paid
Mcphersontampa: $7,000-$10,000 for 32 illustrations.
KellyMilnerH: Mcpherson, illustrators get more than writers very often.

PHeeren: do editors usually feel awkward reading a short story about a disabled kid? Times have changed but I am not sure if the editors have changed or is still prejudice towards disabled writers by editors?
KellyMilnerH: Tom, the answer applies to your question too. Good editors want good fiction, with and without disabilities.
Mallie1025: Yes but it this good for the kids?
PHeeren: ok thanks
KellyMilnerH: PHeeren, submit to the editors that have already shown a disabilities interest or sensitivity.
KellyMilnerH: I can't tell you the number of librarians who want good disability fiction characters. Do it well, and the editors will buy it. Trust me.
PHeeren: okay

KellyMilnerH: Mallie, it's good for the kids who are suffering. And it's good for the kids who know kids who are suffering.
KellyMilnerH: Kids SEE what's going on in the world.
KellyMilnerH: Talking about it -- good and bad -- makes them feel safer, prepared.
KellyMilnerH: Pretending there is nothing bad doesn't keep a kid safe.

ABSHRINK: again is it foolish to try for publication without an agent? Book or mag?
KellyMilnerH: ABE, no it's not foolish. And I have only sold one of my books -- of 14 -- through an agent.
KellyMilnerH: Magazine work for kids never requires an agent.
ABSHRINK: thanks

Mallie1025: Beverly Cleary is the one who pioneered the tell all stories about family life
KellyMilnerH: Gotcha Mallie. And you should tell your truth, regardless. That's the authenticity that's missing from too many children's writer's submission.
KellyMilnerH: Try to write FOR a market, and it shows. Write what your heart tells you to write and it shows too.
KellyMilnerH: The authenticity SELLS.
BrownDvs: <----------------------------- agrees with Kelly

KellyMilnerH: That's your letter [query] asking if they'd like to see your book idea.
KellyMilnerH: If they say YES, you have permission to submit, even without an agent.
ABSHRINK: "literary agent" what's that?
KellyMilnerH: If they say no, try someone else.
KellyMilnerH: A Literary Agent is a third party representative that handles the negotiation.
KellyMilnerH: They are hired to do the submission and contractual part FOR the writer.
Mallie1025: What is the average page count of your books/articles
KellyMilnerH: They tend to know a lot of editors and they tend to be tougher when it comes to getting more money, so it's nice.
KellyMilnerH: But I like doing it myself.
Mallie1025: Me too
ABSHRINK: My story submitted to possible agent. Need agent approval first?
KellyMilnerH: ABE, not necessarily, but agents know what sells. So if you can get his or her approval, you know you're on the right track.
KellyMilnerH: ABE, I hope you get it published. Consider Magination Press.

KellyMilnerH: Mallie, on my articles between 150 for briefs and 800 for articles. Books, they are averaging 64 pages.
Mallie1025: Excellent--just my size!! Thanks :)
KellyMilnerH: Mallie, there is a need for good books for kids -- honest, strong work.
KellyMilnerH: It's hard, but not impossible.
Mallie1025: Kelly I read so many with the grandkids, that I feel I can write them without being tied to 400 pages in a novel
KellyMilnerH: Exactly Mallie.

WriterOfDreamz: what's the best way to get published when writing for kids mags, just wing it and see if they want you?
KellyMilnerH: Writer, the fastest way to break into kids magazines is through nonfiction and HOLIDAY articles.
KellyMilnerH: Holidays are the toughest niches for editors to fill because it's all been done.
Mallie1025: And I do not write down to kids-tho mine grandsons says I have a child's mind--hoping that is good lol
KellyMilnerH: I'm known for my ODD holiday stuff, so I know that's a great way to break in. Come up with a new angle.
WriterOfDreamz: focusing on kid stuff in nonfic - like the gory bits of history that they get fascinated by?
KellyMilnerH: Perfect, Mallie...well done.
Mcphersontampa: TY for the great idea Kelly!
Mcphersontampa: Holidays for Animals!
KellyMilnerH: Exactly Writer. I wrote about why we give hearts for Valentine's Day once.
KellyMilnerH: I mean, it's a body part.
KellyMilnerH: Turns out we thought at different times in history love came from other body parts.
KellyMilnerH: The liver, the spleen and the bowels.
KellyMilnerH: Body parts and kids -- a natural mix.
KellyMilnerH: So my weird Valentine's Day story was a big hit.
WriterOfDreamz: lol
OldAngler: Love comes from the bowels? What a bunch of crap...so t speak
KellyMilnerH: Imagine giving paper bowels for Valentine's Day.
KellyMilnerH: LOL Angler, you haven't changed a bit.
KellyMilnerH: So break in with new angles on old themes at the holidays.
KellyMilnerH: Remember there is a six month lag...submit six months before the holiday.
WriterOfDreamz: The kids magazine front is a little thin on the ground here for some reason, but i'll look around
Mallie1025: Kelly--great story idea!! Kids love body parts--all of them :)
KellyMilnerH: But if it's a good idea, they'll buy it for NEXT year.
Mallie1025: LOL Old
WriterOfDreamz: I'm one of those people who picks up weird information like magpies do glittery things lol
KellyMilnerH: Exactly Writer, so turn that into kidstuff.

Rose1533: Know of anyone writing about kids with ASDs?
KellyMilnerH: I don't Rose, not yet. But be sure you know the subject, then tackle it.
WriterOfDreamz: ASDs?
Rose1533: Autism Spectrum Disorders
KellyMilnerH: Rose, consider the parenting markets too.
Rose1533: Including Asperger syndrome, which my daughter, Emily, has.
Mallie1025: Hey now science says the heart has a "brain" of its own--has to be a story there
Rose1533: Oh, there are help books.
Rose1533: I was thinking about kids books, to help those without understand what those with ASDs are going through.
WriterOfDreamz: look at the popularity A Curious Incident of A Dog in the Night Time achieved - the protag has aspergers.

MRSFRENCHY: I'm a Bk amp and would like to reach kids who are amps, but how would I reach them?
KellyMilnerH: amputee?
KellyMilnerH: Frenchy, Crutcher has an amputee in his book WHALE TALK. And I have to tell you, he's one of the most popular characters in all his books.
WriterOfDreamz: consider a cushion to be headed towards your head mallie ;-)
KellyMilnerH: Andy Mott, the one legged swimmer.
KellyMilnerH: If you write a story about a kid with an amputation, and you write him well -- a strong character with more than JUST a disability -- the librarians will LOVE you. They will help you find your audience.
KellyMilnerH: And if you write that book, it's easier to get press for, because it's a theme that hasn't been well covered yet.
KellyMilnerH: Crutcher wrote about it because when he coached swimming, he had a one legged swimmer.
KellyMilnerH: He was able to make the kid REAL, not stereotypical. You could do it even better. So write it.
KellyMilnerH: Great idea.
MRSFRENCHY: I figure I'd have an advantage since I'm an amp
KellyMilnerH: Frenchy, you absolutely would. DO it.

PHeeren: Kelly, what about writing short stories based in foreign lands? I wrote "Tennyson Bear meets the Easter Bunny" 12 yrs ago but I still cannot find my old rough draft...it takes place in London, btw
PHeeren: and also, an Easter story about two ducks learning about compassion in quondon (London)
W2PSushi: I know Paddington Bear but not Tennyson Bear. ;-)
PHeeren: I love British culture and UK
KellyMilnerH: PH, I think that multicultural edge could be a winner, in a short story or nonfiction article. Probably not enough for a whole book. Unless you looked at all the "Easter Bunny" type characters in other lands and at home. THAT
KellyMilnerH: could be a fun, quirky book.

Mallie1025: Kelly, what do you think of the books on "same parent" homes--caused quite a controversy at first
KellyMilnerH: Mallie, I think kids in gay families MUST have books that reflect their lives. I think people who don't like them should not BUY or READ them.
KellyMilnerH: But they shouldn't bother anyone who DOES love them. I know the editor of KING AND KING.
WriterOfDreamz: :: passing kelly a soap box to stand on...just in case::
KellyMilnerH: She said the letters she gets make her cry -- letters from kids who love that their lives are in a picture book.
W2PSushi: King and King got dumped on a LOT
W2PSushi: I think many had not understood its intended audience, perhaps
KellyMilnerH: KING AND KING was a target. But Tricycle Press stood behind it and that's as it should be.

KellyMilnerH: Mcpherson, than you for coming. Thanks for liking my books.
OldAngler: I wrote a duck story...very sad...the duck always laid on his back. He went nuts...just quacked up
Mcphersontampa: KELLY, THANK YOU!
KellyMilnerH: Cryptozoology -- bigfoot, loch ness monster, etc., next. Then Kid mummies.
Mcphersontampa: It's been a pleasure!
KellyMilnerH: Bye Mcpherson...you wonderful reader.

Rose1533: Cinderella time here. Night, all
KellyMilnerH: Night Rose.

PHeeren: The Episcopal Church is having General Convention which will debate gay clergy and gay marriages
PHeeren: and I feel uncomfortable when they fight
PHeeren: over my church's problems
KellyMilnerH: PH, I understand your angst. Fear is a strange thing.

BrownDvs: Goodnight all
KellyMilnerH: Night Brown.
PHeeren: I am Episcopalian
W2PSushi: wow! The time has flown
BrownDvs: It was nice meeting you, Kelly.
KellyMilnerH: That it has, Sushi.
Mallie1025: Night adam
KellyMilnerH: Nice meeting your too Brown.
W2PSushi: JA Konrath kept on going for more than an hour! his big fans all showed up ;-)

MRSFRENCHY: I'm going to call it a night.
Mallie1025: Night Mrs -- write that book!!
KellyMilnerH: Night Frenchy, I wanna see that manuscript.
OldAngler: Gotta run off...Kelly, great info!!
KellyMilnerH: <grin>
KellyMilnerH: Angler, great seeing you again.
OldAngler: bye
PHeeren: anyway, I have enjoyed the chat and meeting with you, kelly
KellyMilnerH: Sushi, PHeeren, Lyn, did I do okay?
Mallie1025: Kelly we need you to come back soon--so many more questions
Mallie1025: Kelly, do you have a website?
KellyMilnerH: www.kellymilnerhalls.com

WriterOfDreamz: actually kelly I think I have another question for you, if you don't mind :)
KellyMilnerH: Don't mind at all Writer. Go ahead.
WriterOfDreamz: Okay, I'm currently writing what is possibly the most insane project in the world - retelling cinderella through letters and notes sent between different characters
KellyMilnerH: Okay
WriterOfDreamz: we've been advised by one person to aim the project towards adults, do you agree, or should we consider the kids market?
KellyMilnerH: Writer, write it as it demands to be written.
KellyMilnerH: If it speaks to you in an adult voice, write it that way.
KellyMilnerH: If it speaks to you in a more child like voice, go with it.
KellyMilnerH: But trust YOUR instinct.
KellyMilnerH: Books cross over all the time.
KellyMilnerH: They cross over because they have multiple appeals, not because a target was aimed for and hit.
WriterOfDreamz: so far its adult - but I don't know if that's His influence or our warped minds LOL
KellyMilnerH: It's more organic.
KellyMilnerH: Does that make sense?
WriterOfDreamz: yup
KellyMilnerH: Look at Jon Sciescka's books.
KellyMilnerH: Stinky Cheese Man.
WriterOfDreamz: little red riding shorts lol
KellyMilnerH: Three Little Pigs, from the wolf's perspective.
KellyMilnerH: They are very adult stories, written for kids.
KellyMilnerH: They prove my point.

PHeeren: I'm off for now
KellyMilnerH: Bye PH
KellyMilnerH: Thanks.
PHeeren: bye paul

KellyMilnerH: Read Stinky Cheese man and you'll see what I mean. Write it as it needs to be written, and trust it to find its audience.
KellyMilnerH: Have you seen that book Writer?
WriterOfDreamz: I don't think so but I have seen one of Sciescka's books
WriterOfDreamz: not sure which it was though
KellyMilnerH: Writer, go to the library and get them all.
KellyMilnerH: Read them, study them, find out who edits and publishes them.
KellyMilnerH: That might be the editor you submit YOUR book to.
WriterOfDreamz: lol Kelly, unfortunately that one was from the library - it was the only one they had
KellyMilnerH: Bummer, Writer. Are you a long way from a bookstore?
KellyMilnerH: You can read without buying.
WriterOfDreamz: I don't think he's so widely known over here kelly
KellyMilnerH: LOL
KellyMilnerH: You're in the UK?
WriterOfDreamz: yup
WriterOfDreamz: I haven't seen his books on sale anywhere
KellyMilnerH: Hmmm...the Stinky Cheese Man might be worth the Amazon price in your case.

Mcphersontampa: <would willingly sit here all night and listen to Kelly
KellyMilnerH: Ahhh....Mcpherson, I don't want you to get too tired.
Mallie1025: Me too Mc

KellyMilnerH: But the point remains...write it as your inner writer tells you to.
KellyMilnerH: Great idea, I think.
KellyMilnerH: Did I miss anyone's questions?
Mcphersontampa: ...sorry that just reminded me of: Walter the Farting Dog....lol
KellyMilnerH: Exactly Mcphearson, another great example.
WriterOfDreamz: we're still thinking we must be insane ;-)
KellyMilnerH: Insane works in kidstuff.
Love2write4kidz: lol
KellyMilnerH: Trust me.
Love2write4kidz: like muncsh

WriterOfDreamz: well how many books have been written jointly by two people who've never met?
KellyMilnerH: Like Muncsh...or Seuss.
Love2write4kidz: love them both
KellyMilnerH: But see, Writer, that's a marketing point.
Mcphersontampa: They even made money off of Walter the Farting Dog plush toy....you squeezed it and it farted.
WriterOfDreamz: certainly will be at this rate LOL
Love2write4kidz: lol
Mallie1025: Yes, my grandson crack up over an obscene underwear kids book
KellyMilnerH: That is something interesting to put on your press release.
W2PSushi: Micki do you mean Captain Underpants?
KellyMilnerH: Exactly, Mallie, Captain Underpants is HUGE.
Love2write4kidz: what about moral wacky stories, they say no preaching
KellyMilnerH: Mcpherson, I loved those books.
Soulofawriter18: i've a question
KellyMilnerH: No preaching, Love...just story telling. Let the kids draw their own conclusions.
KellyMilnerH: Soul, what's your question?
WriterOfDreamz: mallie...can you throw my cushion back to me please?
W2PSushi: I used to deliver those books, when I worked with the Scholastic Book Fairs
Mallie1025: LOve I like to get a moral I can--alligator story--don't take in wildlife you can't keep
Soulofawriter18: i'd like my students to critique some of the stories i've written, but I don't know which questions to ask of them...any help there?
Mallie1025: Yes, Dreamz and don't duck lol
KellyMilnerH: Soul, how old are your students?
Soulofawriter18: 9 and 10
WriterOfDreamz: I say give em a copy and a nice RED pen
KellyMilnerH: Okay, Soul, ask them to read the stories, if they aren't too long. Ask them what they liked, what they didn't like.
Pattyapplet: so fifth graders?
KellyMilnerH: Ask them if they ever thought, "No way that's could happen."
Soulofawriter18: 4th grade
WriterOfDreamz: let em tick the bits they like, cross the bits they don't, then ask em why
KellyMilnerH: As them when they got bored.
KellyMilnerH: Ask them if they like the characters...if not why not.
Mallie1025: Soul, my grandsons crit my stories and a friend of mine who writes kid's books
Mallie1025: Harsh but honest critics
KellyMilnerH: Ask them how they'd like to see the story unfold differently.
Love2write4kidz: get them to rewrite the story, bet it would rock
KellyMilnerH: But be aware, if they are YOUR students, it'll be hard for them to tell you the truth.
Love2write4kidz: true true
KellyMilnerH: Might be better to trade with another writer/teacher.
WriterOfDreamz: unless you tell them it's not your story lol
KellyMilnerH: Your kids do HER stories, her kids do YOURS.
KellyMilnerH: That's an idea, Writer.
KellyMilnerH: Say it's for a friend.
WriterOfDreamz: tell them it belongs to someone else
WriterOfDreamz: or even better get a friend to come in pretending its her story
KellyMilnerH: Did that help, Soul?
Soulofawriter18: great suggestions guys...thanks...:)
Soulofawriter18: yes it did...
WriterOfDreamz: she can ask the kids the questions and have a handful of answers you've prepared for her
KellyMilnerH: Good.
Mcphersontampa: It's pouring down rain here. I'll sit until lightning takes me out.
Mallie1025: My 9 yr. old has 3 hardcover books printed - since she was 6==great concept for kids and cheap
KellyMilnerH: Mcpherson, that's right, you have a hurricane aimed at you.
KellyMilnerH: It is Mallie, great idea.
Mcphersontampa: No, it's headed north.
Mallie1025: annoys me since I am not in hardcover yet lol
WriterOfDreamz: great you have a hurricane I have a heat wave
W2PSushi: now THATS dedication ;-)
Mallie1025: Kelly--yes, they write the story do the illustrations and send it off for printing
WriterOfDreamz: can someone go to my opticians appointment for me? lol
Love2write4kidz: lol u are a dreamer
KellyMilnerH: Be safe, Mcpherson, okay?
Mcphersontampa: reschedule
KellyMilnerH: Dreams are good.
Mallie1025: The school and teacher make a big deal of it too
Love2write4kidz: yes they are
Mcphersontampa: of course....thanks
WriterOfDreamz: wish I could, but this appts already a month late lol
KellyMilnerH: Well, should we let poor Sushi go now? I better go work on this mummy book.
Love2write4kidz: kelly, do u critique stories
KellyMilnerH: I do when I have time, Love.
Mallie1025: Dreamz go to bed--must be 4 in London
KellyMilnerH: Will have time after I finish this mummy book, this summer.
KellyMilnerH: My deadline is June 27.
Mcphersontampa: Bye {{{{{{{{{{KELLY}}}}}}}}}}}} come back SOON!
Love2write4kidz: how would one submit a story for u to look at
KellyMilnerH: Mcpherson, I will come whenever invited.
WriterOfDreamz: it is four in london...although i'm not in london ;-)
Love2write4kidz: good luck with it
Mcphersontampa: Sushi...invite her once a week!
Mallie1025: close enough lol
KellyMilnerH: Love, my website is www.kellymilner.com.
Pattyapplet: Where r u dreamz?
W2PSushi: again, anyone interested in our writer's group here, please email me
Mallie1025: Yes paul we must have her back!!!
Love2write4kidz: thanks
WriterOfDreamz: Manchester - up in the north west
KellyMilnerH: My email address is kellymilnerh@aol.com, so feel free to write.
W2PSushi: also to request a copy of this evening's chat session
KellyMilnerH: Thanks ya'll.
Mallie1025: I will give up a crit night lol
Soulofawriter18: great chat...sushi and kelly thank you..
SoulofPanther2: Kelly - you have given me much to think about - I write animal fiction but have not really considered children as my market until someone in here asked me to:)
KellyMilnerH: For having me.

WriterOfDreamz: home of mass murderers, cotton mills and stodgy food LOL
KellyMilnerH: G'night everyone, thanks again.
SoulofPanther2: Now I have more to think about:)
Mcphersontampa: BYE!

Mallie1025: Night Kelly--wonderful presentation and patience with us
W2PSushi: email me (or Lyn) for a copy of the Log
LynWriteBk: who missed the beginning?
Love2write4kidz: yes I did, came in about 5 minutes ago
W2PSushi: Thanks, everyone
Mcphersontampa: Not me, I came an hour early and sat and waited!
W2PSushi: It's my dinner time, here on the west coast
LynWriteBk: wow McP
Love2write4kidz: my bed time in montreal
WriterOfDreamz: Mac...you're crazy
WriterOfDreamz: :-D
Mcphersontampa: Tell me something I don't know
W2PSushi: McP got the Bolt, but never had to hurl it! ;-D
WriterOfDreamz: i'm crazy too?
Mcphersontampa: <glad of that
LynWriteBk: I'll send out the log tomorrow to people on my list
Pattyapplet: Dreamz we are all a bit crazy!
W2PSushi: g'nite, all

KellyMilnerH: You guys have my email address. If I can help, let me know.

6/12/06 8:22:37 PM Closing "Chat Log 6/12/06"

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