Programs

Picture Book A to Z: CHARACTER, An On-Demand Online Course

On Demand

OVERVIEW:

Whether your picture book is character-driven or plot-driven, character anchors the story. This on-demand course is designed to give you tools and knowledge to develop strong characters that your readers will love.

Online, On-Demand Self-Paced Course

  • Five chapters of prepared online lessons that you can access on-demand for up to 6 months from the date of your registration.
  • Access to live Community Office Hours Thursdays at 7pm Eastern for up to 6 months from the date of your registration. (Most Thursday office hours are for peer-to-peer connection, with faculty Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen joining on the first Thursday of every month for questions and interaction.)
  • Two opportunities during your 6-month enrollment for an optional facilitated workshopping of one picture book manuscript with Sudipta and peers.

FEEDBACK EXPECTED:

  • No formal feedback will be offered. You may interact with peers in community office hours.
  • You will have access to an optional (but encouraged), facilitated, peer group workshopping of one picture book. (See dates below for 2022 workshopping.)
  • A limited number of 1:1 consultations are available with Sudipta for an additional fee ($125). Information will be available for purchase once enrolled in the course.

WHY THIS WORKSHOP?

From A is for ARCHETYPES to Z is for ZONE, this on-demand intensive with Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen features engaging lessons and character-focused writing exercises on:
Picture Book Character A-Z

  • point of view,
  • word choice,
  • inner and outer story arcs,
  • imagery,
  • emotion,
  • conflict,
  • motivation and more.

You also get access to live Community Office Hours on Thursdays at 7pm Eastern for up to 6 months from the date of your registration. (Most Thursday office hours are for peer-to-peer connection, with faculty Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen joining on the first Thursday of every month for questions and interaction.)

You might also like to check out the companion course Picture Book A to Z: PLOTTING, An On-Demand Online Course.

IT’S A GREAT FIT IF:

  • You want to write picture books. This in-depth course will ensure that you have a thorough understanding of how to create compelling characters in your picture book.
  • You have written a picture book(s) but aren’t sure it’s ready to submit. Making time for this course means you can spend time revising and strengthening your story through character.
  • You’ve been published in magazines but would like to see your book in print. This course can help you build on your strong writing skills to put together a powerful picture book.
  • You need a workshop you can complete at your own pace. You can work through the lessons individually and join monthly office hours to ask questions and engage with your writer community.

DETAILED AGENDA:

Written and/or Recorded Lectures

You will have access to this course for 6 months from your registration. It’s designed to be completed at your own pace. There are five chapters, with approximately 30 total lessons including:

Chapter One:

  • Character-driven vs. Plot-driven picture books (Letters A – D)
  • Writing exercises: graphic organizers, interviews, and keywords

Chapter Two:

  • Emotional Arc and the Hero’s Journey (Letters E – I)
  • Writing exercises: tracking emotional change and mentor texts

Chapter Three:

  • Fears & Flight (Letters J – N)
  • Writing exercises: Weaknesses, strengths, and self-identity

Chapter Four:

  • Point of View & Research (Letters O – S)
  • Writing exercises: Exceptions and point of view

Chapter Five:

  • Universal Truth (Letters T – Z)
  • Writing exercises: Pacing, page breaks, and more mentor texts

 

Office Hours

  • Thursdays at 7pm EST: Optional peer-only office hours for up to 6 months from your registration for the course.
  • First Thursday of each month at 7pm during the Office Hour: Faculty Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen will join for optional live Q & A.
  • Thursdays: March 24, May 26, August 25, December 8: Optional facilitated workshopping of one picture book manuscript. Join for whichever date is included in your enrollment of 6 months.

COMMITMENT REQUIRED FOR THE BEST EXPERIENCE:
You can work through these workshop sessions at your own pace, and you’ll have six months from the date of your registration to do so. For an enhanced experience, you can join the community office hours, monthly Q & A with Sudipta, and/or the optional workshopping of one picture book manuscript (see dates above).

HOW IT IMPACTS KIDS:

Picture books are the first entry point for getting children engaged in story. Appealing characters will invite kids to immerse themselves in the stories they hear–and later, the ones they read.

Why do we mention this? Learn about the Highlights Foundation mission.

RELATED RESOURCES:

Picture Book Word Count, and Other Rules that are Meant to Be Broken
Picture Books: To Rhyme or Not To Rhyme
How Do You Know If You’ve Written a Picture Book?

FROM OUR COMMUNITY:

“Sudipta provided a wealth of information in the coursework and was very generous with her time during office hours. She knows her stuff!”

“Sudipta is a wonderful teacher in person but the online lessons were also great – so much material laid out in a very accessible way. It is clear she put a lot of work and thought into the class.”

“Even though we were not together in person, I felt the facilitator and Sudipta did a great job in making us feel we were a mini family where we could learn and share freely.”

Faculty & Special Guests

Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen

Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen is an award-winning children’s book author whose books include Chicks Rule, The United States vs. Jackie Robinson (2019…
Learn more

$259.00

All-inclusive registration includes workshop tuition, lodging, meals, beverages, and snacks. Free shuttle service is available from Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (AVP) International Airport.

We offer payment plans as low as $75/month. We'll be in touch with details after you register.

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workshop information

Our all-inclusive price means we provide transportation to and from the airport, lodging, all meals, unlimited snacks, and wireless Internet access.

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