Resources For Writers

Must-See Websites:

KidLit411 – most comprehensive, informative website I know for children’s writers and illustrators, chock full of fantastic resources and information.

SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers And Illustrators) – the international professional organization for writers and illustrators of children’s literature loaded with resources of all kinds and well worth considering membership.

General Information:

Some Basics On Becoming A Writer

Great Groups/Communities/Challenges For Children’s Writers:

SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers And Illustrators) – the international professional organization for writers and illustrators of children’s literature loaded with resources of all kinds and well worth considering membership.

Children’s Book Insider – membership group with access to tons of articles, videos, resources of all kinds for every age level of writing for kids from picture books through young adult.

Julie Hedlund’s 12×12 – membership group (3 levels available) 12 picture books in 12 months, writing and critique forums, opportunities to submit to and connect with children’s literary agents

Tara Lazar’s PiBoIdMo (Picture Book Idea Month – November) – a month of educational and inspirational blog posts from respected children’s authors and illustrators and a challenge to create a picture book idea a day for a month

Carrie Charley Brown’s ReFoReMo (reading For Research Month – March) – a month of instructional posts from respected children’s authors on using picture books as mentor texts to learn from and improve your writing

Angie Karcher’s RhyPiBoMo (Rhyming Picture Book Month – April) – a month of educational posts on writing picture books in rhyme

Paula Yoo’s NaPiBoWriWee (National Picture Book Writing Week – May)

Online Writing Classes:

Institute of Children’s Literature

Making Picture Book Magic – Susanna Leonard Hill

Just Write For Kids – Emma Walton Hamilton – picture books, MG, YA

Lyrical Language Lab – Renee LaTulippe – Punching up prose with poetry

Nonfiction Archaeology – Kristen Fulton – nonfiction picture books

Kidlit Summer School – Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen – new subject matter each summer

Must-Read Books:

Writing Picture Books: A Hands-On Guide From Story Creation To Publication by Ann Whitford Paul

The Nuts And Bolts Guide To Writing Picture Books by Linda Ashman

Querying And Submitting:

SubIt Club – “a support group for writers and illustrators getting their work “out there”.” SubIt Club posts submission information, talks about query and cover letters, and helps motivate and support you as you send your work out into the world.

Heather Burnell’s Monster List of Picture Book Publishers

Getting An Agent:

Heather Burnell’s Monster List of Picture Book Agents

Agent Query

Literary Rambles

Query Tracker

How To Tell If An Agent Is On The Up & Up

Writing Contests For Children’s Writers/Picture Book Writers:

Institute Of Children’s Literature Writing Contests: the Institute runs 3 or 4 writing contests per year with with varying topics and age ranges and varying cash prizes.

Pockets Annual Fiction Contest: submit between March 1 and August 15 of the contest year.  800-1000 words for ages 6-12.  1st Prize $500 and publication in Pockets Magazine.  10 runner-ups will be held for possible publication.  Please scroll half-way down page below regular submission guidelines to see Annual Fiction Writing Contest Guidelines.

Susanna Leonard Hill Writing Contests: 3 or 4 contests per year, no entry fee, prizes vary but usually include ms critiques from agents, editors, and respected authors, enrollment in writing classes, writing craft and resource books, personalized signed picture books, memberships in groups or websites, etc.  Valentiny Contest (2nd week of February), Halloweensie Contest (last week of October), Holiday Contest (1st or 2nd week of December), Illustrators’ Contest sometime in the spring or summer, plus sometimes other contests depending on prize availability 🙂

Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest: deadline April 1, 2019 .  Submit a funny poem up to 250 lines.  1st Prize $1000, 2nd Prize $250, 10 Honorable Mentions of $100 each, top 12 poems published online.

Writers Digest Annual Writing Contest: has a category for Children/Young Adult.  Deadline May 6, 2019. 1st Prize $1000.


Idea Generating:  What’s The Story? Cards

What’s The Story Cards are now available if you email me.  Check them out!

They come in a nice little box.


If you open the lid, you can stand the cards up to make it easy to pick randomly with your eyes closed 🙂


The cards look like this:


And they come with an instruction card that looks like this:





And they’re great for sparking and generating story ideas!  Good for writers who need an idea, families on summer road trips (a whole new spin on car/airplane entertainment), or a fun game while roasting marshmallows around the camp fire 🙂  So feel free to holler if you want some 🙂

Calendar of Children’s Book Festivals:

Charlotte S. Huck Children’s Literature Festival, March 8-9, 2019, Redlands, CA

Tucson Festival Of Books, March 2-3, 2019, Tucson, AZ

University of Central Missouri Children’s Literature Festival, March 17-19, 2019, Warrensburg, MO

Fay B. Kaigler Children’s Book Festival, April 3-5, 2019, Hattiesburg, MS

Children’s Book Festival Of Johnstown, April 7-8, 2019, Johnstown, PA

Los Angeles Times Festival Of Books, April 13-14, 2019, Los Angeles, CA

Southern Kentucky Book Fest, April 26-27, 2019, Bowling Green, KY

Hudson Children’s Book Festival May 4, 2019, Hudson, NY

Bay Area Book Festival, May 4-5, 2019, Berkeley, CA

Gaithersburg Book Festival, May 18, 2019, Gaithersburg, MD

Chesapeake Children’s Book Festival June 2019, Easton, MD

Harlem Book Fair, July 2019, Harlem, NY

Minnesota Children’s Authors & Illustrators Festival, September 2019, Red Wing, MN

Princeton Children’s Book Festival September 2019, Princeton, NJ

Brooklyn Book Festival September 2019, Brooklyn, NY

Baltimore Book Festival, September 2019, Baltimore, MD

Scholarshare Children’s Book Festival, September 2019, Sacramento, CA

Orange County Children’s Book Festival, September 2019, Costa Mesa, CA

Collingswood Book Festival, October 2019, Collingswood, NJ

Chappaqua Children’s Book Festival, October 5, 2019, Chappaqua, NY

Sheboygan Children’s Book Festival, October 11-13, 2019, Sheboygan, WI

Warwick Children’s Book Festival, October 2019, Warwick, NY

Vegas Valley Book Festival, October 19, 2019, Las Vegas, NV

Virginia Children’s Book Festival, October 2019, Farmville, VA

Boston Book Festival, October 2019, Boston, MA

Texas Book Festival, October 2019, Austin, TX

Rochester Children’s Book Festival, November 2019, Rochester, NY

Savannah Children’s Book Festival, November 2019, Savannah, GA

Traverse City Children’s Book Festival, November 2019, Traverse City, MI

Utah Humanities Book Festival, Fall 2019, Salt Lake City, UT