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Aspiring children's picture book writers and illustrators ages 18-24 are invited to attend a free symposium with esteemed industry professionals focused on diversity, craft, business and careers!

Click the "RSVP" button to register.
Limited space available.
Panel discussion on career paths, marketing yourself, getting published, and enjoying your work
Art and writing workshops to hone your craft
Portfolio and manuscript reviews, and the opportunity to have an exhibition at Central Library
(See application below)
Breakout sessions with essential information on books and publishing
Free lunch!
Featuring Industry Leaders...
Ruth Chan, Pat Cummings, Shelley Diaz, Cheryl Willis Hudson, Wade Hudson, Laurent Linn, Donna Mark, Daniel Nayeri, Namrata Tripathi, and Evan Turk!
Bonus Opportunity...
Apply by Feb 18 for one of 24 spots for a portfolio or manuscript review with Pat Cummings, Laurent Linn, or Donna Mark and a chance to have you work selected for an exhibition at Central Library!  To apply, first complete your registration for the sympsosium using the RSVP button on this page, then go to

9:15-9:45     Check-In + Coffee, Tea, & Pastries
Information Commons Lab (Left side of Grand Lobby, 1st Floor)
BPL Central Library, 10 Grand Army Plaza
9:45-10:00   Welcome & Opening Remarks
Information Commons Lab
10:00-10:30   Morning Panel Discussion: Pathways in Picture Books
Information Commons Lab
A authors, illustrators, and professors discuss how they got to where they are, why they love writing and illustrating, challenges they have overcome, and why you should stick with your goal and make your book. Featuring Ruth Chan and Evan Turk, with Pat Cummings.
10:30-11:00   Lecture: The Business of Picture Books
Information Commons Lab
Laurent Linn shares a practical and inspiring lecture on how to get your work noticed and published.
11:00-11:15      Break
11:15-12:15     Morning Breakout Sessions: Writing & Illustration
A)  Writing and illustration demo and hands-on workshop with Evan Turk. -- Second Floor Meeting Room
B)  Illustration demo and hands-on workshop with Ruth Chan. -- Youth Wing Upper Program Room
12:15-1:10      Networking Lunch & Info Tables
Dweck Lobby
Lunch provided!
1:15-2:15       Afternoon Breakout Sessions: Understanding Children's Picture Books
C)  Ages, Stages, & Pages: child development for picture book creators, 
with Rachel Payne from BPL. -- Second Floor Meeting Room
D)  The best of diverse picture books: classics, new titles, and how we choose what to buy, 
with Chris Lassen from BookOps. -- Youth Wing Upper Program Room
11:15-2:15       *Portfolio & Manuscript Reviews*
Information Commons Lab
*By application only. See "Bonus Opportunity" above
and apply separately by Feb 15 at
2:15-2:30   Break
2:30-3:20 Afternoon Panel Discussion: How Children's Publishers are Addressing the Need for More Diverse Books
(And what we are looking for from new writers and illustrators!)
Dweck Auditorium Lobby
Leaders in the field of diverse publishing discuss their efforts to increase equity and inclusivity in books and authorship, and provide tips and guidance for aspiring children's picture book creators.  Panelists include Namrata Tripathi, Daniel Nayeri, Cheryl Willis Hudson, and Wade Hudson, moderated by Shelley Diaz.
3:20-3:30  Award Announcements & Closing
Dweck Auditorium
Exhibition winners from the portfolio and manuscript reviews will be announced!
3:30-4:00   Dessert and Mingling with Special Guests
Dweck Lobby
Coffee, tea, dessert, and conversation!

Save the Date: Storymakers Exhibition & Reading Reception
Thursday, March 21st, 6:00-7:30 pm
Gallery viewing, artist recognition, hors d'oeuvres and refreshments
*Apply for the portfolio/manuscript review by Feb 18 to be considered for the exbition!



For questions about accessibility or to request accommodations please email [email protected] or call (718) 230-2753. You may also include this information directly in your online registration form. One week advance notice of need for accommodations is requested. 


Youth & Family Services, Brooklyn Public Library

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