Jo S. Kittinger is an amazing author an exceptional RA and cheerleader for the SCBWI. I saw her in New York this year for the SCBWI Winter Conference. Her new picture book, The House On Dirty Third Street, has just been released, so I asked Jo to give us a Writing Tip of the Day. Here's what she had to say:
Look for the heart of your story. Readers want to connect with emotion. They want to feel something when they read your book. I seldom remember characters' names or plot details, even in books I've loved. But I always remember the way a good book made me feel.
I've heard more than one editor say, "Make me laugh or make me cry and you've got me hooked!" So ask yourself, "What is the emotional core of my story?" Then direct your edits to polish that heart of gold (or greed, fear, faith, loss, or love -- whatever the essential emotion is.)