CALLING ALL ASPIRING AUTHORS!

box-and-book-lrDid you know that the annual Cheerios New Author Contest launches today! Do you have the ‘write’ stuff?
Are you an ambitious writer eager to pursue your dream of creating a children’s book that will be remembered years from now? If you are, you probably need no encouragement from us, so just click here to enter. The contest (www.spoonfulofstories.com), which is seeking the next great children’s book author, encourages aspiring authors nationwide to submit an original story, in either English or Spanish, for children ages three to eight.

In 2010, mom and small business owner Laurie Isop, of Renton, Wash., was named Grand Prize Winner and received a $5,000 cash prize. Also, beginning in late March, Laurie’s book How Do You Hug a Porcupine? will be featured in more than two million Cheerios boxes nationwide, with hard covers becoming available in July.

Isop offered some tips for raising kids who love books: “Start early, and don’t just read the words. Use as much inflection and drama as possible.” She encourages parents to offer a variety of books so children have lots of options. “Eventually they’ll find a character or subject they connect with, and voila! They’re hooked on reading!” She also says, “Don’t be afraid to conjure up your own books. When my youngest was four his preschool class got to visit a working construction site. That evening I wrote a little story on my computer. It was all of ten pages and had clip-art for illustrations. It was called Erik Visits the Construction Site. I used his name on every page and he just loved it; he begged me to read it to him again and again.”

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