Ever since J.R.R. Tolkien's "The Hobbit" and his series "The Lord of the Rings" were published, there have been many fantasy books that followed which described the "formula" that Tolkien used.
Much of Tolkien's books rely on some sort of a journey. The main characters have a quest that must be completed, or else the world will face mortal peril at the hands of a great evil. Since Tolkien's novels, there have been many authors who have tried to emphasize the importance of a quest, using it as a vehicle for plot, introducing new characters, and allowing for characterization.
As far as children's literature goes, there have been books where the characters must go on a physical journey that ends up testing them on the emotional and mental levels as well as physical.
An example would be the book "Dorothy and the Wonderful Wizard of Oz." The entire book is devoted to the new and exciting things Dorothy and her friends come across in the fantastic land of Oz. Through the journey, Dorothy experiences emotional growth and develops deep relationships between the Lion, the Tin Woodsman, the Scarecrow, the Wizard and many more characters.
Books that feature journeys aren't new, but there is so much potential for writers to be creative with them. Not to mention, it can also serve as a great writing exercise because it makes the writer try to realize the types of descriptions they need to have. When is it important to describe that tree or that flower, and when is it okay to leave out the fact that Dorothy needed to dig a small hole in the ground she could use as a latrine?
Understandable? This writer hopes so.
That's all for today, dear readers. Till next time- keep reading!