Craft, Community & Your Career: A Support Group for Experienced Storytellers Feb-Jun 2021

February 5 - June 7, 2021

Online Course Info:

One book can make a difference in the life of a child.  It’s a belief and a mission at the very heart of the Children’s Book Community.

While your passion may make the pursuit of accomplishing that mission feel amazing and rewarding, there can be difficulties—especially when it comes to blending your passion with the professional aspects of making a career in children’s books work.

This course has been thoughtfully designed to support storytellers who want to make writing for children a long-lasting career.

Gather with course facilitators and industry veterans including Mitali Perkins, Sarah Aronson, Erin Dionne, Leah Henderson, Chris Tebbetts, and more, to find the support you need to grow your career in children’s book publishing.

Online Workshop Participant Cap:

60 students.

Join Us Online To:

Monthly programming will center on three core concepts:

  • Moving your work through the creative process.
  • Business and career. Seeking opportunities to connect with your audience.
  • Essential conversations. Values at the craft and industry level including representation, diversity, inclusion, lived experiences, and #ownvoices.

Elements of this multi-month online workshop include a kick-off weekend, pre-recorded lectures, online resources, live discussions and engagements, office hours, writing exercises, a community discussion board, and optional 1:1 consulting opportunities (at $100 per month).

Please note that there is an application process for this workshop. Application deadline is February 2. During the registration process, you will need to submit:

  • A brief publishing history (for traditionally and self-published writers)
  • A brief overview of your course of study and/or your efforts at publishing thus far (for pre-published writers)
  • Optional: wishlist for course topics (suggestions encouraged!)

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis starting immediately. You will be notified of your acceptance status as your application is reviewed by the faculty. PLEASE NOTE: While this course requires an application to ensure that all participants are beyond the beginner level, please don’t be put off by the process if you are pre-published. If in doubt—apply!

What You’ll Learn & Experience:

  • Kickoff Weekend, February 5 – 6, 2021: This will be a weekend intensive to meet, collaborate, and engage in course content. You’ll get to know the group, hear about planned lectures and other topics, participate in “ask anything” consults and population-specific breakouts, and office hours.
  • Live Sessions, February 5 – June 7, 2021: Sessions will take place on the first and fourth Mondays, February 5 – June 7, via Zoom (at 7pm Eastern). They will be recorded and made available later if you are unable to attend a specific session live.
  • The first Mondays will include live themed office hours for discussion and connection to industry professionals. Topics will include: Equity and Inclusion in the Children’s Book Community; Bringing Yourself, and Your Best to the Page; and more (including specific topic requests from participants.)
  • The fourth Mondays will include an in-depth lecture/discussion. Topics will include: Quirky Revision; Visual Outlining; Seven Questions to Ask About Race, Culture, and Power in Fiction; Tapping into Voice; Three Kinds of Backstory; and more (including specific topic requests from participants.)
  • Access to our Virtual Classroom: Online pre-recorded mini-lectures, writing exercises, and resources will be added to the virtual classroom by our facilitators throughout the workshop. Topics will include: Taming the Beast of Social Media; Finding Inspiration in Life; Writing Prompts, Memory Maps, and Journaling; Deep POV; Staying Inspired; and more (including specific topic requests from participants.)
  • Access to our Community Discussion Board: Participate in discussions with fellow participants and facilitators to deepen your sense of community and find mentorship and support to continue your career in children’s book publishing.
  • Throughout the program, optional 1:1 career and/or marketing consultations and mentoring to overcome specific challenges, for an extra fee (see details immediately below)
  • Live closing session, June 7, 2021: to conclude the workshop and celebrate our time together.

1:1 Consultations
Participants can choose to supplement their experience with one or more 1:1 consultations with our facilitators (up to one per month, for $100). Consultations can center on general career or works-in-progress; you choose the focus(es) to overcome specific challenges or get support in specific areas. (Please note that those who opt for 1:1 consultations throughout the program will meet independent of the pre-assigned group meeting times.) Details about securing single or multiple consultations will be part of our kick off weekend.

Please note:
If you’re unable for any reason to attend either session, you’ll have access to the recordings of each through July 31, 2021.

Join Us If:

You are a published, self-published, or serious unpublished writer, who has been at it for a while and seeks community, support, and inspiration.  We want to help you:

  • Take a deep dive into advanced craft and industry-related topics
  • Discuss important topics in representation and authenticity in children’s books
  • Gain inspiration to take the next steps in your career
  • Experience real peer support and interaction to build your sense of community in this industry


Sarah Aronson

Sarah Aronson has an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts, and has…
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Chris Tebbetts

Chris Tebbetts is the author and co-author of many books for young readers. Titles include the #1 New York Times…
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Leah Henderson

Leah Henderson has always loved getting lost in stories. When she is not scribbling down her characters’ adventures, she is…
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Mitali Perkins

Mitali Perkins has written many novels for young readers, including Rickshaw Girl (chosen by the New York Public Library as one of…
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Erin Dionne

Erin Dionne’s latest book for tweens is Secrets of a Fangirl (2019). She’s the author of 6 other books for…
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