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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 on your right.
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 reviews, exhibition, and award opportunities (See application below)
  • Breakout sessions with essential information on books and publishing
  • Networking
  • Free lunch!


Featuring Industry Leaders...

Pat Cummings, Laurent Linn, Aram Kim, Sean Qualls, Jason Low, Dhonielle Clayton, Nancy Mercado, and more!


Bonus Opportunity...

Apply by Feb 15 for one of 20 spots for a portfolio or manuscript review with Pat Cummings or Laurent Linn, and a chance to have you work selected for an exhibition/reading in the BPL galleries on March 22nd!  Applications due February 15th.  To apply, first complete your registration for the sympsosium using the RSVP button on this page, then go to

9:45-10:00   Check-In
Info Commons Lab, BPL Central Library, 10 Grand Army Plaza
10:00-10:15   Welcome & Opening Remarks
10:15-11:15     Panel Discussion: Pathways in Picture Books
Authors, illustrators, publishers, 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.
11:15-11:30   Break
11:30-12:30  Morning Breakout Sessions
Demo and hands-on illustration workshop with Aram Kim: multi-media digital and pastel painting
Demo and hands-on illustration workshop with Sean Qualls: mixed media collage and painting
Business workship with Laurent Linn: The Business of Picture Books: How to get your work noticed and published.
12:30-1:15  Networking Lunch & Info Tables
Lunch provided!
1:30-2:15  Afternoon Breakout Sessions
The basics of child development and picture book design, with Rachel Payne from BPL
The best of diverse picture books: Classics, new titles, and how we choose what to buy, with Chris Lassen from BookOps
(1:15-2:30  Portfolio & Manuscript Reviews, by application only. See "Bonus Opportunity" above.)
2:15-2:30   Break
2:30-3:15 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!)
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.  Karen Ginman will be moderating the discussion with Jason Low, Dhonielle Clayton, and Nancy Mercado.
3:15-3:30  Award Announcements & Closing
Save the Date: Storymakers Exhibition & Reading Reception
March 22nd, 6:00-7:30 pm
*Apply for the portfolio/manuscript review 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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