Most children’s books really aren’t that long. This means that you need to grab a child’s attention in the first few words. The first sentences or paragraphs can make or break the success of your story. That’s why when you learn to write children’s books, you really need to focuses on developing a strong start to your story.

A great way to engage a child’s attention immediately is to start out with action, dialogue, or anticipation. If your dialogue creates a sense of action or excitement your story will be even more engaging! Let’s look at a few book openers from some common children’s stories.

It was not that Omri didn’t appreciate Patrick’s birthday present to him. The Indian in the Cupboard – Lynne Reid Banks

In the great green room, there was a telephone and a red balloon. Goodnight Moon – Margaret Wise Brown

All children, except one, grow up. Peter Pan – J. M. Barrie

My name is India Opal Buloni, and last summer my daddy, the preacher, sent me to the store for a box of macaroni-and-cheese, some white rice, and two tomatoes and I came back with a dog. This is what happened: I walked into the produce section of the Winn-Dixie grocery store to pick out my two tomatoes and I almost bumped right into the store manager. He was standing there all red-faced, screaming and waving his arms around.

Kate DiCamillo, Because of Winn-Dixie