What is PiBoIdMo you ask? It’s the cool shorthand for Picture Book Idea Month, a fabulous initiative begun by children’s author Tara Lazar.
Tired of novelists having all the fun in November with NaNoWriMo, I created PiBoIdMo as a 30-day challenge for picture book writers.
The challenge is to create 30 picture book ideas in 30 days. You don’t have to write a manuscript (but you can if the mood strikes). You don’t need potential best-seller ideas.
You might think of a clever title. Or a name for a character. Or just a silly thing like “purple polka-dot pony.” The object is to heighten your picture-book-idea-generating senses. Ideas may build upon other ideas and your list of potential stories will grow stronger as the days pass.
Daily blog posts by picture book authors, illustrators, editors and other kidlit professionals will help inspire you. By the end of the month, you’ll have a fat file of ideas to spark new stories.
PiBoIdMo was first held in 2008 by a party of one—me! Then I hosted it on my blog for the first time in 2009. Each year the number of participants has doubled. In 2012 we had over 750 writers following PiBoIdMo.
I’m having a go at this for the first time, as well as trying my hand at NaNoWriMo. So far, this is getting most of my attention.
I flushed out a small, thick, blank notebook from my hoard and have been using a double spread of two pages for each idea. Some days the ideas flow easily, other times I stare at the blank page for what seems like hours. It’s a lot like novel writing really.
Below are a few of my pages so far, just to get the gist of what my approach is all about.
If anyone has any wonderful ideas for The Horse that wanted to be a Zebra, feel free to share. At the moment I’m thinking he may somehow paint big stripes on himself before running away to the jungle? Hmmm.
Most of these ideas may not see the light of day but I’m certainly feeling creative & motivated to continue, which makes all the page-staring worth it in the end.