When I submitted a manuscript for a children's book to a publisher, they expressed an interest but wanted me to improve the style and cadence:
The syntax and cadence would possibly work well in an oral retelling of the story, but on paper, they seem to be awkward and stilted in parts. The narrative's tone seems inconsistent -- in some parts formal and old-fashioned, in other parts too casual and modern.
I have no idea of what techniques or method of writing I can implement. Are there any universal suggestions for style and cadence when composing a children's fable for the ages of 6-10? Should a casual, modern tone be preferred over an older fashion?
The publisher I cited is very strict about exercising their right to have option over submitted materials, so I have to be careful about presenting excerpts. In any case, here are some small passages.
The little squirrel begged and pleaded for the buzzard. He even offered up his mother, stating she was a whole lot fatter than he and could last him 3 meals. Too bad for that little squirrel though, that old buzzard was concerned about what was easiest and not who was the fattest. That was how he became the best hunter in the bird world. The little squirrel was so disappointed and hoped to be eaten by a “more amazing bird.” That old buzzard was offended when he heard that the squirrel or anyone else could think there was a more amazing bird than he.
“A bird more amazing than I,” the buzzard was also curious. “Oh, yes, yes. I saw an eagle once that was swifter than the fishes of the sea and could catch as many as 7 mid-air with one swoop and I was just amazed to see it fly. I bet 6 of the feathers from your marvelous feathered mane could do it all the more better.”
“Oh mighty buzzard, please do not despair. I know of one more challenge you can manage right over here. I once saw a falcon so fast that it flew between the jaws of an alligator but I am sure you could do that twice but be careful, those old alligators have never been known for being nice.”
This time, that old buzzard pulled it off. He was able to dive, not passed through, the jaws of not one but two alligators but, it was close; so close the the air from the clack of the alligators' teeth nearly caused him to tumble mid-air. Right then and there he knew it was his time to bail but that poor buzzard, he did not notice the alligator's tail.