Tell Your Story: Picture Books

There’s just one thing we can tell you about writing a picture book: there is no one “right way” to do it.

You have a story to tell, and a unique voice with which to tell it.

Maybe you’ve had an idea for a while and want to get started. Maybe you’re looking for a place to find community and hone your craft.

No matter where you are on your journey, we’re glad you’re here.  Your story and your picture book can inspire children, and we’d love to help.

Blue Picture Book Icon of an Open Book
Yellow background with note paper accents that says: I Leared a LOT and it was authentically helpful. It felt like they were sharing their knowedge and experiences as supportive mentors who wanted to help new authors coming up behind them.

A Crash Course in Children's Book Publishing

This course covers all aspects of children’s book publishing, from genres and types of books to working with a publisher (and everything in between). Material will be covered via live Zoom sessions and pre-recorded content.

You’ll also have access to weekly live office hours with faculty, and a 1:1 consultation after the course.

Inspiring Children Through Story

“My picture book … deals with parents separating. One little boy, who parents recently divorced, went to bed with [it] many nights. This deeply moved me to know this picture book helped this little boy.”

“I tutor 2nd grade reluctant readers. My understanding of picture book structure and prose allows me to help them learn more than words. Rather than just read the story, we talk about it.”

“You mean I get to keep this book forever?”

…Spoken by a child in tears who was gifted with one of my books at a school visit and had never owned a book before.

“I sometimes talk to students about all the times I failed as an illustrator and writer. One day a teacher brought a young girl with her notebook to talk to me after my talk. The teacher thought she was very talented. The girl said she had always been too afraid to show anyone her work but asked me to look. I was so honored and grateful to be able to encourage her creativity and hopefully pass on some courage.

“A friend of mine teachers fourth grade and he read one of my books to his class. After that, they drew pictures to go with the story. I now have about thirty great pictures. It is also interesting to see what the children most focused on in the story. One thing, for example, is a spider which is a rather minor character but makes a great impact.”

“When I hear kids giggle while I’m reading [my book] I feel like I’ve done the job I intended to do.

Stories from Our Highlights Foundation Alumni

Chelsea Tornetto and her book cover, Gardens are for Growing

These are Your People, and This is Your Place

“I am currently releasing my first two traditionally published children’s books with more on the way, and it wouldn’t have happened without the experience I had at Highlights.”  Learn more about Chelsea’s story here.

Traci Sorell with her book Powwow Day to her right, and a bookcase filled with books behind her.  It is a screen shot from a YouTube video.

From Scholarship to Book(s) with the Highlights Foundation

Traci Sorell shares the role that our community played in in the development of two of her books, including her picture book Powwow Day (illustrated by Madelyn Goodnight).  Learn more about Traci’s story here.

Lina Maslo (top left) Lori Richmond (top right) Sheryl Haft (bottom left) Annie Won (bottom right)

Four Alumni & Their Books

Children’s Book Workshop Alumni from 2014 and 2015 share their experiences and paths to publication.  See their stories here.


The Highlights Foundation positively impacts children by amplifying the voices of storytellers who inform, educate, and inspire children to become their best selves.

Tell Your Story Through Picture Books

Intimate and inspiring workshops for children’s authors and illustrators.

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Get Involved at the Highlights Foundation

Our Mission in Action

Share Your Story, Inspire a Child
Equity & Inclusion in Kidlit
Partners & Sponsors

The Highlights Foundation positively impacts children by amplifying the voices of storytellers who inform, educate, and inspire children to become their best selves.  Learn more about our impact.