Here’s a photo of Jodi "helping" me read a manuscript. She sure seemed to like it, so hopefully I will too and will want to buy it. :) She's growing and changing every day. She just started crawling a little bit, but she tries to use her feet too much rather than focusing on getting her hands and knees in sync. She sure is proud of herself, though!
Many Heartsongs have children as secondary characters, but sometimes in first drafts they don’t age like they should as times passes in the story. Usually this happens with infants and toddlers. I’ve seen stories where the baby starts out cooing and being cradled in chapter one, then several months later in chapter nine, he’s still just cooing and being held all the time. Well, every mom knows a matter of months brings drastic changes in a little one’s development! That same baby surely wouldn’t be cooing and content to be held constantly. He’d be babbling, maybe even talking some, and eager to crawl or toddle around (depending on how much time has gone by, of course.)
In stories where more time passes, authors need to watch their older child characters closely, too. Would a five-year-old at the beginning of the story act the same after a year or so has passed? Or a twelve-year-old who turns fifteen by the end? No, her actions and dialogue should reflect that she’s maturing as time elapses, even if it’s just ever so slightly.
I know authors don’t intend for their young characters not to age, but since these secondary characters aren’t as essential to the story, their development can get overlooked. But they’ll stand out to your reader, especially ones who know children well.
So, just remember to keep an eye on the children in your books. If any significant amount of time goes by, make sure the kiddos are keeping up!