Intimate and inspiring workshops for children's authors and illustrators.
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Summer Camp at the Barn: A Week of Creative Mentorship 2016 | July 17 – July 23, 2016

The Highlights Foundation tackles summer camp a bit differently than with s’mores by the campfire and hiking in the woods (although those adventures are always on our schedule, too). To us, summer camp is a time to find the kind of encouragement for your writing that only a generous mentor can provide: someone to guide you in the long process of publication and a place to work one-on-one with a published author on fine-tuning your words and mastering your pitches in a relaxed and supportive atmosphere.

This year’s summer camp will kick off each morning with an inspiring keynote, followed by an hour and a half of one-on-one mentorship. You will have a writing mentor for the week who can offer broad critiques of your writing as well as immediate feedback on work produced at camp. Your mentor will support your goals for the week whether you want to flush out one piece for submission or identify the strongest concept for your work-in-progress. Our goal is to meet your needs by providing one-on-one support each day of camp.

Conferees will also find time to meet with other members of our faculty for guidance in the submission process, including query-writing basics and the current children’s book market. We know, however, that the most important piece of the publication puzzle is developing your writing muscle. That’s why we’ve dedicated plenty of time for you to work on your craft in the comfort of your private accommodations.

There will be 10 breakout sessions throughout the week led by an editor, agent, author, or illustrator. Each break out session is designed to help you grow as a writer through hands-on exercises. You pick the sessions that most appeal to you. Our faculty will cover topics like creating rich characters, developing voice, constructing believable settings, word choice, transforming stories from didactic to child-friendly, structuring plot, nonfiction, poetry, and much more.

This experience is not to be missed for any writer who is looking to experience the generosity of creative mentorship that only the Highlights Foundation can give.

You will need to submit a writing sample by June 10 so that we can best match you with one of our creative mentors. Registration for this workshop is limited. Register now!

We have five $500 competitive grants available for this program. For an application, contact Jo Lloyd.

Faculty & Special Guests

Matt Phelan, author and illustrator of the award-winning graphic novel,The Storm in the Barn, shares his ideas about creating graphic novels with participants.
Author and illustrator Matt Phelan shares his ideas about creating graphic novels with participants at 2015's Summer Camp.