Tag Archives: Tara Lazar

StoryStorm 2019: May Bountiful Ideas Rain Upon Us

1 Jan

StoryStorm, the brainchild of creative picture book penner Tara Lazar, is an inspiring challenge to writers of all inclinations to create 30 individual ideas for a story/plot/concept/book throughout the month of January. To further motivate, Lazar’s site provides a daily insightful guest blog from fellow writers/illustrators.

StoryStorm is the evolution of Picture Book Idea Month (PiBoIdMo), which centered exclusively on picture book ideas, and occurred during the hectic month of November (it clashed with National Novel Writing Month). Registration is free, just make sure to post a comment with your name on the registration post, and then you’ll be able to win a slew of cool kid lit related prizes, permitting you post a comment on each inspiration guest post. Be sure to also subscribe so your inbox will be filled with daily inspiration.

Both incarnations are widely popular with thousands of published and aspiring authors as well as classrooms of students participating to develop routine muse-filled habits while embracing their inner creator. In 2018, I decided to continue on my own with PiBoIdMo in November, but am also happy and encouraged to creatively ride out the ‘Storm in 2019!


I’m already one idea in with Wood You?, a meta picture book response to deforestation and both the liberal and conservative stances on protecting the earth’s trees. Think of it as the Lorax, but less furry and more direct and analytical. I certainly need to work on my pitches, as that book (from what I just wrote) sounds AWFUL!!!! 🙂

Bring on the Ideas: 2014 PiBoIdMo

29 Oct

It’s that time of year again!

Now that we’ve filled our mouths with Halloween candy, allow that sweet sugar to muse our brains with 30 delicious ideas for picture books. If you haven’t already, please sign-up for the 6th Annual Picture Book Idea Month hosted by the lovely Tara Lazar. On a personal note, for the second year in a row, my 9th grade English honors students will participate for extra credit. I hope to share their creative ideas with you in the future!


2013 PiBoIdMo

24 Oct

While fall is cooling our bodies as winter prepares to visit, allow Tara Lazar’s Picture Book Idea Month to warm your creative soul!


CraveWriting has participated for the past three years and looks forward to awakening from a dormant period of children’s book writing hibernation. We strongly encourage all imaginators to participate by visiting TaraLazar.com and creating 30 original picture book ideas during the month of November.

Happy imagining everyone!

That’s a Wrap: PiBoIdMo 2012

8 Dec


Special thanks to Tara Lazar for hosting the fourth annual Picture Book Idea Month. My third venture with this global creativity party left me feeling less than “imaginative,” as you can see from my idea list below. This could be my gut saying, “it’s time. Revise and send out your existing stories, before you go mustering up more ideas.”

However, the true joy was seeing my talented ninth grade students generate ideas each and every day. I’m proud of their “imaginator” skills and look forward to guiding them as they turn one of their ideas into a genuine picture book manuscript. I just need to remember to add one student to my roster: ME!

Happy writing everyone. For those with a picture idea or three, I urge you to consider Picture Book Marathon in February.

This year’s ideas, well the titles at least:

  1. Busy Baby
  2. Thomas LeClair the Strange Little Bear
  3. Journey of the Droplets
  4. The Unlucky Cannon
  5. Frank and Steve’s Monster
  6. The Greedy Gyoza
  7. Septopus
  8. Mirror Jumper
  9. Outside the Box
  10. Down the Mountain
  11. The Giant Eraser
  12. Super Slice
  13. The Chip Monk
  14. The Wampire
  15. The Ark
  16. Sensory Field Trip
  17. Pet Buffet
  18. For Giants Only
  19. Owl Cafe
  20. The Late Bird
  21. Birthday Doors
  22. My Pony is Bigger Than Yours
  23. Girl VS. Cap
  24. Cop Kid
  25. Santa’s Apprentice
  26. The Haunted Boy
  27. Uninsultable Kid
  28. The Vegetable Jar
  29. Cinderello
  30. Aldo the Alligator Finds a Job


Job Done!

6 Dec

In November, 2010, children’s book author Tara Lazar issued a challenge: “Write 30 picture book ideas in 30 days.” In the end, 198 dedicated writers answered the call.

For anyone wishing to explore the innocent world of picture book writing, I highly recommend Picture Book Idea Month (PiBoIdMo). Each daybrought a new guest blog post from an established author, editor, or agent arriving in my mailbox which also allowed me to make several new contacts. In addition, there were hoards of tasty prizes from jewelry, to signed picture books, to manuscript critiques.

Compared to the 50,000 words demanded in NanoWrimo, creating 30 ideas in one month is not as severe of a challenge. Though typically each month I’d probably only produce 5 or 6 original ideas. The beauty of PiBoIdMo is that it keeps your imagination focused on strictly picture books.

Even if you missed out, and don’t want to wait until November 2011, you can always do it another month on your own. Visit the PiBoIdMo site to access the motivational posts.

Overall, I feel accomplished. PiBoIdMo helped me launch into my 10th Children’s Book Ideas journal, and gave me a handful of ‘ready-to-write’ ideas.

Special thanks to everyone involved and congratulations to all who participated.

Btw…for laughs/lollipops below is a list of some of my titles for ideas generated during PiBoIdMo:

  • Are You Really a Kid?
  • Wild Wando
  • Ropunzel
  • We’re Not For Dinner
  • The Cheercrow
  • Christmas Palm Tree
  • The Best Man is a Boy
  • Witches Day
  • Foolish Frederick
  • Mr. French Toast

Lovely Link: 400+ Things That Kids Like

6 Nov

Head on over to Tara Lazar’s blog for a list of 400+ Things That Kids Like. For example, campfires, popcorn, and weekends. The list is both un-scientifically but so-obviously accurate and more importantly, amusing. Instead of checking to see if your project’s topic and characters are on the list, use this list as inspiration for a new story.

In fact, the list was so inspirational, that before I even read a single item, I drowned my journal with a new idea for a children’s book. Working Premise: A boy moves to an upscale neighborhood  where he meets a group his own age. Before he can become one of them, he must pass their test to prove he’s a kid.

You never know where an idea may spring from, but a list of hundreds of things kids like will certainly ignite your creativity engine. If interested Tara also has a list of 79 Things Kids Don’t Like. Happy imaginative driving everyone!

Download: PiBoIdMo Checklist

3 Nov


As a professional procrastinator, I often focus on everything but the task at hand. So, instead of jotting down ideas, I decided to spend my afternoon whipping up a little check-list to monitor my progress during PiBoIdMo. Please download the above PDF and use it at your leisure. Simply click on the link and print, or right click to download it. I recommend printing it in color, cause it just looks that much sexier, but B&W will do just fine.

Happy “idea hunting” imaginators!

Recommendation: PiBoIdMo

3 Nov

I've got my badge, where's yours? Sign-up today!

Tara Lazar, author of THE MONSTORE (2013) is sponsoring Picture Book Idea Month 2010. PiBoIdMo is the cuddly companion to the arduous stress of NanoWrimo. So what do you have to write? Simply jot down 30 original ideas for picture books and you’re a winner and may even take home some prizes including agent contact and professional critiques. There’s no requirement to share, and you can keep your “best-selling” premise on the down-low. Personally, as a self-proclaimed “Idea Factory” I’m looking forward to peeking through my imagination’s closet by giving myself plenty of leads for February’s PB Marathon.

Happy “idea planting” imaginators!