What child doesn’t love having someone read them a book at bedtime? If you write children’s books, you probably envision your book as part of that cherished memory. Promoting your work can be difficult, though. You’ll want your website and other materials to be targeted towards children and adults alike.
A word search can serve as a powerful and engaging tool. Kids and parents will come to your website to solve the puzzles about your wonderful books. And who knows? Those same puzzles could become part of the cherished bedtime memories, too.
Making Your Children’s Book Word Search
The types of word searches you make will depend on your current body of work. If you are a prolific children’s author, create a list of all of the books you’ve written to make into one comprehensive word search. It might look similar to this word search for the Rhode Island Children’s Book Award.
First-time writers can start by making word searches for their first book. For stand-alone books, you can include the names of characters, general themes of the book, words about the setting, and more. But no spoilers! Kids will want to read the book themselves to find out what happens. This “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” word search provides a good example.
Seasonal children’s books can focus on the joy of the season. Take this “Polar Express” word search, for example. Many of the words are specific to the book, while others pertain to the holiday season as a whole.
You might also have a series of books you’d like to make a word search for. If you’re in that situation, add favorite characters and locations like before, but also add a few hints as to what will come in future books. Or, if you write books that aren’t necessarily a series but encompass similar ideas, you can add these recurring words to your word search. For example, Dr. Seuss might have made a word search with his unique language in a word search like this one.
Online Activities for Children’s Books
To share your word search with your fans, embed your puzzle onto your website at any time, and use it to promote your book. Here are some ideas for using your word search for promotional purposes:
- Share it on social media to drive traffic and interest
- Pair it with an audiobook or an online book for kids to solve in tandem
- Run a contest with your puzzle, offering your latest book as a prize for the winner(s)
You can also encourage others who enjoy your book to share the puzzle on their website, too. This might include your local library, bookstore, peers, and more.
Offline Activities for Children’s Books
The online activities for your children’s books will lead well into the offline activities. Many authors attend book events at libraries, bookstores, fairs, book clubs, and more. Bring word searches for the kids to share and solve as an extra prize, or include them with a book signing.
You can also put your word search on your printed promotional materials. Add a word search to the invitation for an event, and encourage others to do the same. A small word search on the back of your business card will also appeal to the kids who read your books and the adults who buy them.
Once you’ve made your word searches for your children’s books, feel free to post them in the comments or send them to us; we’d be delighted to share them, too. Similarly, if you’d like to make a crossword puzzle for your book, visit our sister site, Crossword Hobbyist. And if you find you need any help making a puzzle for your wonderfully unique book, feel free to reach out to us for further guidance. We’d be happy to help.
Kristen Seikaly used her artistic background, research skills, and love for the internet to launch her first blog, Operaversity. Now she uses the skills to connect teachers, parents, and game enthusiasts with Crossword Hobbyist and My Word Search. She studied music at the University of Michigan, and now lives in Philadelphia.