Three Questions For Children's Book Writers and Illustrators

Welcome to Inkygirl: Reading, Writing and Illustrating Children's Books (archive list here) which includes my Creating Picture Books series, Writer's and Illustrator's Guide To Twitter, interviews, my poetry for young readers, #BookADay, writing/publishing industry surveys, and 250, 500, 1000 Words/Day Writing Challenge. Also see my Inkygirl archives,  and comics for writers (including Keiko and Will Write For Chocolate).

I tweet about the craft and business of writing and illustrating at @inkyelbows. If you're interested in my art or other projects, please do visit Thanks for visiting! -- Debbie Ridpath Ohi


Travel writing contest, no entry fee, cash prize

From Charles Carroll, editor of Are you fed up with travel writing as it exists today? Are you looking for a fresh approach to this medium; one that focuses on the extreme nature of traveling as opposed to the “Club Med” stories that so often fill the pages of travel writing these days? If so, this contest is perfect for you! Send us your story, any language, any topic; as long as it’s original and interesting it constitutes as Xtreme! The winning author will be awarded a $100 cash prize! This is our inaugural competition and it will run quarterly. In addition to submitting your crazy travel experiences in written form- we are accepting Xtreme photos and videos for equal consideration. We’d eventually like to receive enough photos and videos to have a separate competition, but for now written and visual work will go head to head! Our viewers will vote for their favorites and XTS will award the winner on March 1, 2010- no strings attached, no questions asked. If your worried about creative license, the authors of the work on our site retain all rights to their art and, if they so wish, can ask for it to be removed at any time. Give it a shot, you’ve got nothing to lose! DEADLINE: March 1, 2010 PRIZE: $100, (quarterly competition) LIMITATIONS: None CONTACT US: For more info about the contest:

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The Weird Book Room

Thanks to my friend Ray for pointing out the Weird Book Room on ABeBooks. If you're looking for some literary diversions, it's worth a visit. I would have loved to have eavesdropped on the editorial or sales meetings for some of these books.

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So who's going to join me in the 1000 Wds/Day Challenge in 2010?

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To those who took up the 1000 wds/day or 500 wds/day challenge last year, how did you do? And how many of you want to join me in the challenge THIS year? For those who haven't heard of this challenge, the goal is to write 1000 words a day, at least six days a week. If you miss the occasional day or days, that's ok -- the goal is to keep up the motivation even if you sometimes slip up. Too often, I find that writers start motivational challenges like NaNoWrimo with enthusiasm and good intentions, but give up when they start missing their daily targets for more than a few days in a row…undermining their confidence and defeating the purpose of the original challenge. You can read more about the 1000 Words A Day Challenge here. You can also aim to write 500 words a day instead (or you want to drop down from 1000 during the year) or the 250 Words A Day Writing Challenge (just added!). 500words-300w

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Online Community For YA Writers: YALitChat

YA author Georgia McBride has started up a community for YA writers on Ning called YALitChat. YALitChat is named after the #YALitChat group on Twitter, founded by Georgia:

#YAlitchat is a weekly twitter chat for anyone involved in the writing, editing , marketing or publishing of Young Adult literature. #YAlitchat takes place at 9PM EST and goes until 10:15PM. There is a guided discussion three weeks out of the month and one week each month, there is open discussion. For daily tweets relating to Young Adult literature that may be of interest to our writers, I have started a #YAlitchat Twibe. Our Twibe is a twitter group for #YAlitchat members. Visit to join. There is also a larger community where you can connect and share twenty four/seven on ning at without worrying about the limitations of twitter.
If you're a YA author, I strongly recommend checking out this community. Georgia regularly posts up-to-date info about markets and industry news relevant to YA writers. And feel free to add me as a friend! You can find me at

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