I have wondered about some of my own children's songs and hymns. Would they be considered useful? It is natural to wonder and to actively seek out people to be a listening ear, a sounding board, or to just give encouragement. My neighbor across the street gives piano lessons to beginners and also accompanies in Primary. She was an English major in college and later married an English professor. She said that she was willing to take a look at my songs. I was happy to have her opinion because she is NOT really a professional musician but IS an actual "end user." She looked at my songs and gave real useful feedback about what the kids in her Primary might actually like from what she observes from week to week. She also had insights to textural forms, word usage and rhyme schemes and other writing details. She was a great sounding board and I appreciate her insights.
So yesterday, I decided to actually complete the submission process. For the new Children's Songbook, they allow up to 5 submissions per person. I had six children's songs I wanted to submit. One of those I decided not to send in again since they already notified me that it was under consideration. "Live By the Light of His Love" is a song comparing the two accounts of the Sermon on the Mount found in the New Testament and the Book of Mormon. That song had won an Award of Distinction previously in the Church Music Submissions.
Four of the songs I sent in are "Put on the Whole Armor of God," "Hosanna to Our King," "How Far Is Heaven?' and "Lord of All." These are all on my website. Some are also previous award winners in the Church Submissions -- but I simplified them even more drastically and added guitar chords. The completely new song I submitted is "My Baptism Covenant." My sister Barbara has been requesting a new baptism song for a long time. She finally wrote down a list of concepts that needed to be in the song, handed it to me, and I wrote the song.
Now we just wait until July to find out which songs become finalists. So glad I am not on the judging committee!