Anastasia Suen

Author – Consultant – Editor

June 1-July 20, 2016 Intensive Picture Book Workshop

Work on your picture book with a developmental editor.


Q. How will you critique my children’s book manuscript?
A. I will work with you for 8 weeks via email to help you “find the story inside the story” of your children’s book manuscript. Weeks 1 and 8 are “goals” weeks. Weeks 2-7 are critique steps. Your work will be due each Wednesday.

Begin a new critique step module (on a private site) each week for 6 weeks in row. You have 7 days to read the 7 lessons and complete the critique step.

Intensive Picture Book Workshop Critique Steps:

  1. Story Goals: What are your 5 goals for this story? (Ideas)
  2. Story Topic: What topics does the story cover? (Ideas)
  3. Story Theme: What is the story’s emotional message? (Ideas)
  4. Story Pitch: What happens in Act 1, Act 2, and Act 3? (Organization)
  5. Story Arc: How do the main character’s emotions change? OR Which idea patterns do you use? (Organization)*
  6. Storyboard: How is the story paced page by page in a picture book? (Organization)
  7. Point-of-View: Does the story have a single narrator? (Voice)
  8. Wrapping Up: Final Manuscript Questions + Goals Review

*Yes, I critique nonfiction picture books!

Intensive Picture Book Workshop Syllabus:

A story has three parts: the beginning, the middle, and the end. Each part, each act, has a different job to do.

In the Intensive Picture Book Workshop you will learn how to:
1. show and tell your picture book story (without writing art notes).
2. answer the guiding questions for each act in your picture book story.

Act 1: Picture Book Beginnings

The 3 P’s: A Person in a Place with a Problem

Module 1: Who is the narrator?
Module 2: Uh-oh! What’s wrong? (A story starts when something changes.)

Act 2: Picture Book Middles

The 3 C’s: Conflict, Complications, CRISIS!

Module 3: What conflict does the main character encounter?
Module 4: Are things getting more complicated for the main character? Does it lead to a CRISIS?

Act 3: Picture Book Endings

The 3 E’s: Enlightenment, Energy, Emotion

Module 5: What does the main character finally realize?
Module 6: What does the main character finally do to solve the story problem?

Each module has a mentor text example lesson in each genre: fiction, nonfiction, and poetry.

My writing students come from all levels of the continuum, from beginner to advanced. Some students sold the books they wrote in the workshops while others continued to master their craft and sold their first book later.

Are you ready to work with a writing mentor? Are you looking for a writing class to help you start your book or take your work to the next level? Sign up for a workshop critique so we can start working together!

Copyright © 2016 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.

Timeline: A Visual History of Our World

Timeline: A Visual History of Our World
by Peter Goes (Author / Illustrator)

Booktalk: From the Big Bang to the present day, illustrated scenes tell the history of our planet in one continuous story in a beautiful large-format hardback for young and old.



Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2016 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.

Gorillas Up Close

Gorillas Up Close
by Christena Nippert-Eng (Author), John Dominski and Miguel Martinez (Photographers)

Booktalk: Explore the differences between gorillas in zoos and in the wild with the gorilla family troop in Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo. Delight in the similarities gorillas share with humans while finding out more about these incredible animals.

Snippet: Gorillas. What’s not to love? They’re smart, funny, busy, and hairy–from incredibly cute to seriously scary. They’re knuckle walkers. Vegetarians, too. Who knew you could become that strong just by eating your veggies?

It’s STEM Friday! (STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

Copyright © 2016 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.

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