Energize readers through active fiction and nonfiction writing that shines the light on exciting science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) concepts.
You love science and our world, and want to share your knowledge and passion with kids. How do you accomplish it? Learn the dynamics of engaging fiction and nonfiction science-based writing for children and teens, whether you’re published already or just beginning. Through presentations, hands-on workshops, one-on-one manuscript critiques, ample writing time, and sessions with acquiring editors, this workshop will give you the tools and insights you need to advance on your path to success.
Attendees will be able to submit to all editors participating in the workshop.
PLENTY OF TIME FOR WRITING, REVISING, AND NETWORKING!!
Faculty blog posts
Miranda Paul: Making Science Fun (or Funny)
Jennifer Swanson: Science Writing…It’s Not Just for Nonfiction
Miranda Paul: The Intersection of Science & Social Studies: Can Creative Combinations Enhance Your Writing?
Jennifer Swanson: STEAM-ing Into Nonfiction
Jennifer Swanson: 3 Myths About Why Writing Science Books for Kids is Hard
Sample schedule (from previous year)
Optional tour of Highlights for Children and Boyds Mills Press
Arrival and check in
Appetizers and dinner
After dinner: Welcome and brief introduction of faculty (our backgrounds, books we’ve worked on, and how it all relates to science, of students, group chat.
STEAMing into Nonfiction: Find engaging STEM/STEAM ideas/topics
Targeting the right age group for your content: different formats for nonfiction STEM writing and what works
for younger versus older readers.
Writing Time/Free Time
The Importance of Narrative Nonfiction, or, How to Trick Children into learning about Science
Getting Creative–Action Rhymes, Poetry, & Short Formats: Learning how to blend science topics into engaging, short formats for younger readers or listeners (age 8 and under) through reading/performing. An exploration
of magazine and online publishing opportunities.
Individual critiques with faculty
Writing time for those not in critique—rewrite for next group critique and other writing, if time allows.
After dinner: Writing time/Small table
Concept Picture Books: write engaging science books that aren’t necessarily “story” books with characters.
A look at creative nonfiction picture books, and discovering ways to balance the concepts, facts, and illustration with text that accompanies a 32-page picture book format. We will also explore “back matter” and what kinds of information might be good to include along with a concept picture book submission or pitch.
Educational vs. Trade Publishing Panel: The difference between and Educational to Trade
Nature Walk – Notice the Science All Around You
“From Submission to Shelf”: The process of creating a picturebook
Researching your Nonfiction book: Writing a proposal, photos, and speaking with experts.
Extra consultations with workshop leaders as needed.
After dinner: Science Trivia and Board Games Fireside (S’mores Science)
Nuts and Bolts of Submitting: polishing the dreaded cover letter, basics of preparing a WFH package, and figuring out where to send your work.
Fictional Characters, Nonfiction Content: narrative science-based picture books.
From picture book biographies of scientists to fictional series such as The Magic School Bus, join us for a study of narrative science-based picture books and chapter books.
Building out science-based content for middle grade and YA readers (nonfiction and fiction)