This list focuses on intensive workshops and retreats for serious writers of children’s literature. The retreats and workshops listed here are not MFA or long-term programs. These are one-day to two-week programs focusing on craft. Although many of these workshops are led by editors or agents, the focus is on the craft of writing children’s and young adult literature. If you are looking for a MFA program in writing for young readers, this list may help you.

Some events listed here may not be specifcally for children’s writers but offer craft workshops that may benefit writers for any age group. The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) offers many workshops and retreats, but scouring their site is too time consuming for me to include their events. You can find information for the chapters near you here.

NOTE: Some retreats or workshops may have registration deadlines far in advance of the workshop. Please note/verify the deadline to register/apply. Some of these retreats or workshops may be by application only. I receive no compensation for listing these events.

2021 Retreats & Workshops

February 4-7: Story Threads: Unravelling Character, ONLINE

Jeni Chappelle—Freelance Novel Editor, Cofounding Editor/Board Member, Revise & Resub
Tiffany Grimes—Developmental Editor/Designer
Carly Hayward—Developmental Editor

May 21-23: Big Sur Children’s Writing Workshop, North Falmouth, MA
Andrea Brown Literary Agency

Andrea Brown—President, Andrea Brown Literary Agency
Jennifer Laughran—Agent, ABLA
Jennifer Mattson—Agent, ABLA
Jennifer Soloway—Agent, ABLA
Kelly Sonnack—Agent, ABLA
Nikki Garcia—Editor, Little, Brown BFYR
Ashley Hearn—Associate YA Editor, Page Street Publishing
Yolanda Scott—Associate Publisher/Editorial Director, Charlesbridge
Jennifer Ung—Senior Editor, Simon Pulse/Simon & Schuster

March 19-21: Beachside Nonfiction Workshop, Fernandina Beach, FL

Candace Fleming—Edit and Get It Literary Services
Jennifer Swanson—Edit and Get It Literary Services
Lesa Cline-Ransome—Author
Sarah Albee—Author
Eric Rohmann—Illustrator
Simon Boughton—Publishing Director, Norton Young Readers
Kathy Landwehr—Vice President and Associate Publisher, Peachtree Publishing
Hilary Van Dusen—Executive Editor, Candlewick Publishers
Alyssa Mito Pusey—Executive Editor, Charlesbridge Publishing
Pam Bobowicz—Senior Editor, Workman Publishing
Katie Heit—Editor Cartwheel/ Orchard Books, Scholastic Inc.
Elizabeth Stranahan—Assistant  Editor, Crown Books.

June 6-12: YA & MG Master Skills Workshop, Concord, MA or ONLINE

Gary Schmidt—Author
Patti Gauch-Author

FAll TBA: Anne of Green Gables Adventure Workshop, Concord, MA
Whale Rock Workshops

Gary Schmidt—Author

December 4-6: Big Sur Children’s Writing Workshop, Big Sur State Park, CA

Andrea Brown—President of the Andrea Brown Literary Agency
Jennifer Laughran—Agent, ABLA
Jennifer Mattson—Agent, ABLA
Jennifer Soloway—Agent, ABLA
Kelly Sonnack—Agent, ABLA
Emma Ledbetter—Editorial Director of Picture Books, Abrams BFYR
Melissa Manlove—Senior Editor, Chronicle Books
Clarissa Wong—Editor, HarperCollins Children’s Books


Host your own retreat

with one of these books!

REVISING YOUR NOVEL FIRST DRAFT TO FINISHED MANUSCRIPTWHAT KIND OF LOSER INDIE PUBLISHES AND CAN I BE ONE, TOO by Pamela Fagan Hutchins

OUTLINING YOUR NOVEL

STORY GENIUS