A blog about reading, writing, finding and studying children’s books

A blog about reading, writing, finding and studying children’s books

Reading for pleasure? Start here
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What is ‘reading for pleasure?’ It’s a fact that reading for pleasure is one of the key indicators of success for children. In other words, children who enjoy reading and choose to do so (as opposed to just being made to read the assigned texts at school) will typically do better academically, which then filters through to the rest of…

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The monster guide to writing a children’s book: middle grade edition
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Hi, awesome writer! I’m so glad you’re here. Writing for children is the best job (or hobby) in the world but it’s absolute not the easy option! Children deserve to read and see themselves in the very best books, written by people who care passionately about making brilliant stories for their young audience. Writing for children should never be an afterthought…

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Birthday flash sale! 39% off everything
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Happy birthday to me! I turn 39 this week and I wanted to celebrate by giving YOU lovely people a little present because I love you so. From Wednesday 22nd November until Sunday 26th November (midnight GMT), you can get a whopping 39% off all editing services and courses at Writer and the Wolf, from the £9 Become an Expert…

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What’s a comic and what’s a graphic novel?
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What’s the difference between a comic and a graphic novel? Are they the same thing? Can children’s books be graphic novels? In the first post in my series exploring Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics I discussed definitions of ‘comics’ as an art form, ultimately settling on McCloud’s label of ‘juxtaposed pictorial and other images in deliberate sequence, intended to convey information and/or…

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My schedule for MCM London Comic Con 2023!
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Hands up if you’ve been to any comic conventions this year? I try and go to as many as I can, partly because I love comics – as do my husband and son – and partly because I edit comics (so the tickets are a deductible expense 😅). This year we’re off to MCM London Comic Con again and I’ve…

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What are comics?: Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud Part 1
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About 13 years ago I discovered Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art, part how-to, part comic, part history book, part academic text. I was gearing up to write my MA dissertation about representations of colour in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and needed to level up my visual literacy and I’d heard that McCloud’s book was the best way to learn about the way pictures and text can work together. I’m SO glad I picked it up because it’s utterly fantastic: a really immersive, compelling read and full of McCloud’s expertise and passion.

I started putting together a blog post discussing definitions of comics and graphic novels and picked up Understanding Comics from my shelf to remind myself of how McCloud uses these terms. Once I started reading I couldn’t stop! So I decided to treat myself and revisit the entire book, and I’m going to discuss it here as I read.

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Things to do with children in the library without a library card
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Found yourself in a library but you either don’t have a library card for this particular library don’t have a library card at all do have a library card but it’s blocked because you’ve got fines or overdue books (I’ve been there 😬)? Fear not! You can still have a lovely time even if you’re not able to load up…

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What themes and topics should YA focus on?
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Next up in the YA Fundamentals series is themes and topics. The most important thing to consider when writing YA fiction is whether your teen reader will feel as though the book has really been written for them. The difference between YA and adult novels isn’t just the ages of the characters or how much sex and violence you can…

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WELCOME! I LOVE YOU

Hello and welcome to Writer and the Wolf blog! I'm Siobhán and I'm a developmental editor of children's and YA books. This is where I post advice and tips for authors, parents, librarians and anyone who loves children's books!

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Joelle Wisler
Siobhán's advice shaped my manuscript and query into a project that got a full manuscript request from an agent in the first week of querying.


Jennifer Grolemund
I am completely BLOWN AWAY! Your feedback is SO helpful and SO thoughtful. You are a truly talented editor!



Hazel Compton
One of the best things I’ve ever done for my writing. I’ve been writing for years, but this manuscript critique has developed and delved into a much stronger, deeper and focused version of my novel.


Angela Kecojevic
You’ve nailed everything and picked up on the things only an editorial expert can spot! You really have been amazing. I couldn’t have asked for a better editor to help with this!

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