Workshop Spotlight: Explore Nonfiction from All Angles With Our Mentors

Our Master Class in Writing Nonfiction for Children and Young Adults explores nonfiction from many angles: the editorial, the business, and, most importantly, the art of telling true stories. Work with our talented group of mentors to:

  • Explore factual writing through a range of topics, including nonfiction voice, biography, memoir, nature writing, science writing, and narrative nonfiction.
  • Engage in daily breakout sessions for hands-on digging into work-in-progress or sparking ideas for new nonfiction projects.
  • Work on your specific goals in one-on-one mentoring sessions: be guided in your revisions or explore story ideas.

Meet our award-winning 2018 faculty:

Larry Dane BrimnerSibert Medal Award Winner Larry Dane Brimner
Larry is the author of more than 200 fiction and nonfiction books for children. He is best known for his gritty works about the Civil Rights movement in America. His nonfiction book awards include:

  • Robert F. Sibert Medal
  • Carter G. Woodson Award
  • Robert F. Sibert Honor Medal
  • Jane Addams Children’s Book Award
  • NCTE Orbis Pictus Honor Book Award

Amanda ShihScholastic Associate Editor Amanda Shih
Amanda acquires and develops nonfiction for middle grade and young adult readers with a focus on historical, narrative, gift, and reference projects. She is currently looking for:

  • Gift books: Illustrated (especially illustrated history), smart humor, pop culture
  • Narrative: Historical (weird history–true hauntings, unsolved mysteries, etc.–and feminist/minority-focused history a plus), memoir, stories that connect past history with current events
  • Science and other reference: Books that make science fun and accessible for young readers, that bring to life the world around us in exciting ways; space and ocean books a plus
  • Diverse creators: Key to publishing new perspectives and new stories is being mindful about choosing who gets to tell those stories–I'd love to bring a diversity of voices and experiences to my list in every way

Sandra Neil WallaceAuthor & Advocate Sandra Neil Wallace
Known for her investigative journalism and original narrative style, Sandra’s books for young readers focus on people who break barriers and change the world. Her book awards include:

  • Kirkus Reviews Best Children’s Books of the Year
  • Bank Street College Best Children’s Book of the Year
  • CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People
  • ALA Notable books
  • Booklist’s Editors’ Choice
  • International Literacy Association’s Social Justice Award

Carole Boston WeatherfordAuthor & Poet Carole Boston Weatherford
Carole writes nonfiction biographies for children as well as poetry and historical fiction. Her book awards include:

  • We Need Diverse Books (WNDB) Walter Award
  • NAACP Image Award
  • Carter G. Woodson Honor Award
  • Robert F. Sibert Honor Medal
  • Coretta Scott King John Steptoe New Talent Award
  • SCBWI Golden Kite Award for Nonfiction
  • Caldecott Honor Medal

Rich WallaceAuthor & Editor Rich Wallace
Rich was a long-time editor at Highlights magazine and the author of both fiction and nonfiction for children and teens. His book awards include:

  • ALA Top Ten Best Book for Young Adults
  • A YALSA 100 Best of the Best for the 21st Century
  • Booklist Editors' Choice Award 
  • Bank Street College Best Children's Book of the Year 
  • NCSS CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People 
  • ALA-ALSC Notable Children's Book

Emma OtheguyAuthor Emma Otheguy
Emma is the author of the forthcoming Pope Francis: Builder of Bridges and the bilingual picture book Martí’s Song for Freedom, which received five starred reviews and these notables:

  • Bank Street Best Children’s Books of the Year
  • School Library Journal Best Books
  • Kirkus Best Books
  • New York Public Library’s Best Books

Peter JacobiJournalist & Professor Peter P. Jacobi

Peter is professor emeritus of journalism at Indiana University and a long-time faculty member of the Highlights Foundation who continues to offer exceptional instruction and mentorship at our workshops.



Jan CheripkoAuthor Jan Cheripko
Jan is the author of seven books for children and young adults, including the award-winning YA novel, Imitate the Tiger. He has been a featured author at NCTE, ILA and numerous regional, state and local educational conferences.

This talented team of experts will help you get your story where it needs to go!

Posted on: June 4, 2018

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