In this Guardian article from 2008, the then Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen explains how to write for children. He writes very well but I can’t help but wonder where does someone like C. S. Lewis fit into his picture of what a children’s author should be?
We’ve all been children, we all know a parent or parent-figure. This makes us all potential writers of children’s books. I think of children’s books as not so much for children, but as the filling that goes between the child world and the adult world. One way or another, all children’s books have to negotiate that space, whether it’s thinking about how the text of a picture book will sound when read aloud, or how the child views him or herself in a world run by adults. And before it reaches the hand, eye or ear of a child there are many adults to deal with: editors, illustrators, publicists, marketing people, the buying adults. And of course, more than likely, you’re an adult reading this, so the moment you think about writing something for children, you’ll be handling something or other from your own childhood. This may be something you read, experiences of being read to, pleasurable or painful experiences from when you were young.