Spring into Magazine Writing for Children

by Leah Heilman Schanke In the April 2018 Professional Series presentation, participants learned that writing for magazines is a good way to break into children’s publishing because: It’s a repeat market – magazines need nonfiction, fiction, recipes, etc. every month. It’s often overlooked. It’s more open to new writers – publishers are often not open […]


Be the Hero of Your Writing Process with Kendra Levin

by Leah Heilman Schanke Kendra Levin, Executive Editor at Viking Children’s Books, author of The Hero Is You, and the September speaker in the SCBWI-Metro NY Professional lecture series, shared how writers can use the hero’s journey model to create a “holistic, healthy, creative writing process.” Many writers struggle with process and experience dark moments […]

SCBWI Metro NY and The New School Agents Panel 2016

By Leah Heilman Schanke For the third consecutive year, SCBWI Metro NY and The New School’s Writing for Children MFA program co-hosted an agents panel held at The New School. Linda Camacho of Prospect Agency, LLC, Susan Hawk of The Bent Agency and Andrea Somberg of Harvey Klinger Inc. were the featured agents. Adria Quiñones, […]

We Need Diverse Books: Diverse Sci-Fi/Fantasy Authors Panel with WNDB

By Leah Heilman Schanke Jennifer Baker, panel organizer for We Need Diverse Books (WNDB) and 2013 winner of the SCBWI On-the-Verge Emerging Voices Award, led a panel discussion on craft and world-building. She asked whether outlining played a role in establishing the rules of the world and fantastical elements. Do you outline or not? Heidi […]

The Voices in Your Head: A Look at How Characters Drive Stories with Marietta Zacker

By Leah Heilman Schanke “Voice is easier to talk about than to execute,” said Marietta Zacker, Agent at Nancy Gallt Literary Agency. Books on writing say a story cannot be character-driven and plot-driven, but Zacker disagrees, “The magic comes when you have a character-driven story, and infuse a plot that works. The character is the […]

Harold Underdown On Craft: Sharpening Your Re-Vision

Originally Published: April 2014 by Leah Heilman Schanke On April 8, Harold Underdown began his presentation by introducing the importance of Reader Response Theory in writing and editing children’s books. The theory focuses on the reader’s experience. While editors and writers also have a response, they primarily analyze plot, characters, setting, etc. But what happens […]

The ABC Of It: Why Children’s Books Matter With Leonard Marcus

Originally Posted: February 2014 by Leah Heilman Schanke Leonard Marcus, historian, author, critic, and curator of The ABC of It: Why Children’s Books Matter at the New York Public Library (NYPL) began his presentation by simply defining an exhibit as storytelling in three dimensions. Marcus observed that when people think about children’s books, they primarily […]