Using a Child’s Imagination for Writing Children’s Books

My daughter has a big imagination. Some of the things she comes up with are silly, crazy, or unbelievable. I already have an idea of hers that I’d like to develop into a children’s book about dinosaurs.

I sometimes think that adults make things overly complicated. When we think of ideas for a story, we make it more complex. But to think at a kid’s level, we need a kid’s mind to give us the best ideas.

I find that a lot of my daughter’s ideas are linked to reality. The things she thinks of are related to recent events, TV shows she’s watched, or topics she’s interested in. At the moment, she likes to play princess. But she’s also interested in driving recently. She loves making the turn signal sound now. Not particularly useful for a story, but she includes these little things in her play.

Tonight, we went to the playground, and the entire theme of her imaginary life was a princess going to McDonald’s for hamburgers and chicken nuggets. At home, she’s often a pony with a towel for a tail. She especially likes unicorns. And now, she’s got a pony flying around (My Little Pony) fighting with Anpanman.

I’ll have to keep notes of her ideas. Maybe someday I’ll write about them.

For those of you with children, do you have any funny stories about your kids’ ideas? Let me know in the comments below.

18 thoughts on “Using a Child’s Imagination for Writing Children’s Books”

  1. My daughter’s imagination was brilliant when she was younger. She had a menagerie of soft toys and concocted all sorts of stories and lives for them all. Ah, to go back to those innocent days! 🙂

    1. I find myself unable to play like my daughter does. It’s so simple, too simple for me. I’d rather create stories on paper or my computer than act them out.

        1. I just wish I could play like she does. But I find that I’m satisfied with the imaginary worlds I think up in my head for my writing.

    1. My daughter loves to build things, and she’s used Lego to create symmetrical “things.” She likes symmetry. And she’s 4, too. Her artwork is quite creative, too.

  2. In my “Questions I ask my kids” I frequently ask them about their dreams. Half the time they tell me about a dream they had the other half they just make up a story.

      1. I would say only about 25% of the dreams they share are actual dreams. The other times they’re just making up stories. I allow them creative liberty 🙂

            1. Nope. Earlier today, my daughter decided to run around the kitchen with her arms flapping, and my sister asked her what she was doing. She said, “I’m silly.”

  3. I remember being a child and playing games that I couldn’t play now because I just can’t imagine the illogical things in them anymore. I used to be perfectly fine at pretending that I was a monster with an infinite amount of wings. Now I can’t imagine that anymore.

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