A custom picture book by Lakshmi Mitter is drawn and written completely around your child and his or her personality. Mitter uses details from your child’s life and makes the book truly special. We have a discount for the first 10 sign ups! Read on to find out more.

Children’s book author Lakshmi Mitter has written many wonderful titles like Triangle Fish Goes Missing, TED the Fire Engine Finds a New Friend, and Christmas Under the Sea. She also authors custom picture books that are handcrafted to suit an individual child’s interests and reading level.

What makes Mitter’s customized picture book different is that she gathers as much information as she can about a child. She then writes a story to do justice to a child’s inner voice.

A special price for the first 10 orders

The first 10 orders get 25% off! The original price of one copy is Rs.1000. A standard package of 4 copies is available for only Rs.2000.

Intrigued to know more about a custom picture book? We caught up with Lakshmi Mitter to find out more.

lakshmi mitter

How did you come up with the idea of a Custom Book?

One of my son’s friends got to know from my son that I write story books for children. He wanted to know if I can write a book with him, my son and two other friends as part of a story. I agreed to write a book featuring him and his friends as super heroes. Once the book was completed, I gave them copies of the book and they loved the concept. From there on, I thought of developing the idea further and that’s how the concept of a Custom Picture Book was born.

Can you give us examples of stories that were very unique?

Every Custom Picture Book strives to make every child feel immensely happy to see themselves as super stars in a story book that is specially created for them. While the concept can be the first step to reading for pleasure, it is also a beautiful means to capture some of life’s most memorable moments.

Each book is a unique story in its own way as every story is tailored to suit each child’s unique interests and reading levels. Here are few examples of some unique stories

A Trip to Egypt!

A parent wanted a story book for her 6 year old daughter based on a trip they took together to Egypt. The book I created for her shows the places that she had visited in Egypt and to make it a little more interesting, I created a treasure hunt for her as part of the story. She has to find a treasure from every place she visits in the book and the treasures are all put together at the end of the book, in the form of a surprise birthday present for her. Her birthday date was close to the delivery date that I had promised. So I added the birthday to make the book extra special.

A custom picture book to remember friends

I wrote a custom picture book for five girls who spent a lot of fun time together playing creatively, writing songs and dancing. One of them is leaving the place where they are staying and she wanted to give her friends a gift to remember her. I incorporated several elements in the story that reflects the fun times that they have spent together. The story in short features them as five brave girls who accidentally land in a mysterious land where it grows dark very quickly. They work together to find their way back home. (The girls were in the age group 8-11)

I wrote a story for five girls who spent a lot of fun time together playing creatively, writing songs and dancing. One of them is leaving the place where they are staying and she wanted to give her friends a gift to remember her.

A custom picture book for a teen!

Most of the books I have created so far have been for children in the age group 4-11. However, I received a special book order which deserves special mention here. A teenage girl wanted a story book based on a very memorable trip to Sikkim that she and her grandpa took together, when she was little. She gave the book as a gift to her grandpa for his birthday.

As for unusual demands or preferences, oh yes there have been some very interesting requests coming directly from the children. One wanted to appear as an eye surgeon and her brother wanted to be an airplane pilot. He even had specifications regarding how the plane should look. Another child wanted to be “Super Flash” and be the hero who catches the villain in the end. One even asked if she can be Bahubali in the book.

A teenage girl wanted a story book based on a very memorable trip to Sikkim that she and her grandpa took together, when she was little. She gave the book as a gift to her grandpa for his birthday. One child even asked if she can be Bahubali in her book!

Is the narrative arc in every book different?

Yes it is. For children in the age group 4-6, the stories have simpler plots, not too many twists and turns. For 7 and above, depending upon their reading levels the complexity of the plot varies.

What has been the best reaction to a story you have written?

The best reaction that I have received so far is for a book I created for two five year olds, who are best friends. I was told that they are not too interested in books. So when they received a book as a gift, at first they were not too excited. But when someone read the book to them, they realised that they were the heroes in the story. They were thrilled! They went running around telling anyone they could find in the house that they both were “really” in a story book. There is another reaction which will always remain with me. The child who was a pilot in the book about him was so happy with the book. He could barely find the words to say. He took his time with the book and kept touching the picture that showed him as a pilot. After a while, he looked up with a big smile. His eyes literally twinkled. He finally found the words to say and he said, “I like it. Thank you.”

 

Image credit: Lakshmi Mitter

Image credit: Lakshmi Mitter

You mention that you also ask parents about a special object that the child treasures. You bring them into the book. Any unique objects that have been in any of your books?

I generally ask parents to include any detail they think would be relevant and must appear in the story to enhance the familiarity element. A parent wanted her daughter’s favourite wash cloth also to accompany her in the adventure story. Another wanted a dog her daughter met during a trip to be part of the story.

When I was a kid, I wanted to be in every adventure I read about. Does a custom book fulfill this basic need that we have, to want a book to be more than just a book?

Absolutely. The primary purpose of the Custom Picture Book is to make the child feel immensely happy. They are happy to know that they can be the hero or heroine of the book. The other characters could be anyone the child considers to be special. It could be parents, grandparents, cousins, best friends and so on. The only limitation is the maximum number of characters in the book cannot exceed 4 or 5.

I am looking towards creating Custom Picture Books centred around birthday parties and which may be given away as return gifts. These are likely to have space for more characters. This is currently in the works.

 

I am looking towards creating Custom Picture Books centred around birthday parties and which may be given away as return gifts. These are likely to have space for more characters. This is currently in the works.

How can a custom book encourage a reluctant reader?

Children are reluctant to read on account of various reasons. The most common reason, I think, is because the subject matter is not interesting enough. Sometimes, they are still trying to grasp the reading skill, which is daunting in itself.

Children are reluctant to read on account of various reasons. The most common ones in my opinion are: the subject matter is not interesting enough or they are still trying to grasp the reading skill, which is daunting in itself.

The concept of Custom Picture Books paves the way for customisation in accordance to the specific interests of each child. They can actually be heroes in a story book, with a storyline in accordance to their specific interests. This is a huge incentive to pick up the book. It is a huge incentive to at least take a look, if not independently read it. Each time I write a new story for any child, I keep in mind the kind of stories that they usually enjoy. In addition, I write the story in such a way that there is space for familiar elements to exist. Familiarity, I believe goes a long way in easing the pressure of independent reading. A book with familiar people, places or objects is it less daunting. It motivates children to give independent reading a try sooner or later. Once they are able to read one or two books on their own, it serves as a huge confidence booster.

To read a sample custom picture book, click here.

We have an offer for you!

You can order here. Make sure you use the code ‘IMC’ when you answer the first question in the order form. This entitles you to our offer!

The first 10 orders get 25% off! The original price of one copy is Rs.1000. A standard package of 4 copies is available for only Rs.2000.

At any given point of time, Lakshmi can work on a maximum of two book orders in the same week. As a result there may be a delay in attending to orders that come after the first two orders.

Note: Shipping charges additional for deliveries outside India.

Website: http://lakshmimitter.com
Email: lakshmi.mitter@yahoo.com

Featured image credit: Pixabay

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