Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

PWID 2019: Breakouts

There will be three breakout sessions. When you register, you will be asked to choose one breakout per session. Because of room size restrictions we ask that you attend only the breakouts you have registered for. If you would like to change breakouts, please contact the registrar.

NEW! This year a 2-hour Intensive with Vashti Harrison will be offered during SESSION I. If you register for the Intensive, be aware you will be working through the first breakout session as well as the second panel session.




A. Visual Storytelling: A writing and illustrating toolkit (with Vashti Harrison)  Suitable for both writers and illustrators. (rm 201)



B. The Seven Deadly Sins of Dialogue:  Take a closer look at dialogue in this craft-focused session. (MG/YA) (with Bill Konigsberg/214)

C. Perfecting the Basics: How to Make a Picture Book Stand Out: This craft-based session will focus on the elements of a successful picture book, from story and voice to marketability. We will review New York Times bestsellers After the Fall: How Humpty Dumpty Got Back Up Again and Be Kind and critically discuss how these fulfill the criteria of key basics of a winning picture book. (PB authors/ Illustrators) (with Connie Hsu/Amph)

D. Writing with Cultural Authenticity (with Adriana Domínguez/rm 216)




E. Thinking outside the book: creative approaches to utilizing the book form  Join me in unpacking picture books and graphic novels that use the book form in exciting and interesting ways. We’ll cover storytelling components like structure, pacing, and page turn from the POV of both author and illustrator. (PB authors/ Illustrators/GN) (with Kait Feldmann/rm 214)

F. Agents, Queries, and Contracts: Oh my!A not
 exploration of the role of a literary
 agent, how to write a successful 
query letter,
 finding the right agent match,
 selling a book, 
and how an agent works 
on your behalf even after your 
book is sold. Soon this process will feel like a walk in 
the park!
 There will be plenty of time for Q&A.

 (with Laurel Symonds/Amph)

G. Creating Content with illustration: Jasmin Rubero discusses how to create content and take your illustrations to the next level.In this presentation, she will give examples on way sartists have added their touch to a book without explicit direction from the text, author, or editor. Also covered in this breakout will be to review what illustrators should think about when they are sketching/planning their dummies that will enhance the reading experience. (Illustrators) (with Jasmin Rubero, rm 201)

H. Netflix and Write:  What the medium of television can teach us about writing better stories. (MG, YA) (with Christopher Hernandez, rm 216)




I. Building Empathy Bridges: Join Bill Konigsberg as he discusses writing across differences in sexual orientation, ethnicity, ability, etc. (ALL formats) (rm 102)

J. The Perfect Pairing: How Picture Book Text and Art Come Together: We will follow the making of Wherever You Go by Pat Zietlow Miller, illustrated by Eliza Wheeler. The journey includes how the picture book was submitted and acquired, the editing process for the text, the vision for the artist pairing, and how all elements came together to form a commercially successful picture book. (PB authors/ Illustrators) (with Connie Hsu/Amph)

K. From Castles to Condominiums: Building Immersive Worlds in Fiction: Detailed world-building is essential to strong fiction—but it’s not just for fantasy and sci fi! Learn the key points to creating believable worlds and how the world influences plot and character. (MG/YA) (with Laurel Symonds, rm 214)

L. Graphic Novel Breakout: (with Kait Feldmann, rm 201)

M. Fun Times with Nonfiction:  How to approach nonfiction books in a fun, exciting, and interesting way. (PB, MG, YA) (with Christopher Hernandez, rm 216)