Conferences, Workshops & Retreats

© Lisa Anchin

The following is a list of conferences and workshop retreats offered for writers across the country. Conferences are listed first, chronologically, and retreats follow.


Tips for Attending the Summer Conference

Tips for Conference SCBWI Conference Newbies, Second Timers, plus a challenge for Many Timers

Ask the Agent: Do You Need to Go to Writing Conferences?

On SCBWI, Advice for Authors and Illustrators

Seven Tips for Your Next Writers' Conference


SCBWI Events Calendar- Workshops, conferences, retreats and regional events. We do not list the individual regional SCBWI conferences on this page. 

Craft Writers' Workshops/Retreats not limited to kid lit

College Kid Lit Conferences -listing of children's literature conferences around the country

What are the Great Children's Literature Writing Retreats?


Feb. 8-10 Write On Con an online conference for children's and YA writers and illustrators. WriteOnCon features blogs, vlogs, pitch sessions, Q&As, critique forums, and more — there’s something for every writer/illustrator, in every stage of their career. From the comfort of your home, a library, a coffee shop — any place with an internet connection — you can meet agents and editors, connect with potential critique partners, and generally soak up a whole bunch of knowledge.


Mar. 15-17 and April 4-6 Whispering Pines Writer's retreat for serious children's book writers and illustrators, with critique sessions from mentors. (West Greenwich, RI)

Mar. 21-24 Everything You Need to Know About Children's Book Publishing: Crash Course 2019 Highlights weekend retreat giving a comprehensive look at how the children’s book publishing industry works. You will gain understanding of all processes associated with submitting, selling, developing, and marketing a trade book or magazine article. You will also learn from and make connections with children’s publishing insiders.

MAY 2019

May 5-9 Highlights Whole Novel Workshop. For MG and YA authors, have your whole novel read and critiqued prior to the workshop, plus a week of one-on-one mentoring. Application deadline Feb 2.

May TBA Exclusive Nonfiction Beach Retreat. Join authors Candace Fleming and Jen Swanson, five editors, and an editor at a beach retreat focusing on writing nonfiction for kids. More details to come.

May 17-May 19 Big Sur Children's Writer's Workshop An Exclusive Workshop for Serious Children's Book Writers
Through these personalized workshops, Andrea Brown Literary Agency and leaders in the industry, work with writers to polish their materials. Faculty include Yolanda Scott (Associate Publisher & Director, Charlesbridge Publishing), and authors David Elliot, Anne Sibley O'Brien. (Cape Cod, MA)

JULY 2019

The annual Southampton Children's Lit Conference provides a unique forum in which to study and discuss the craft of writing for children. Open to new, established and aspiring writers, the 5-day Conference takes place every July in the Hamptons, at the Eastern End of New York's Long Island—a resort area of natural beauty. World-renowned authors, illustrators and editors offer inspiration and guidance through workshops, lectures, group discussions and special presentations. Workshops in picture book, middle grade and young adult writing meet daily for 3 hour sessions (enrollment is limited to 12 students per workshop.) In the afternoons, participants choose from a wide range of elective sessions with distinguished authors, editors, publishers, and agents.  

2019 Children's Lit Conference 
July 10-14, 2019 
Picture Book with Dan Yaccarino
Middle Grade (Faculty TBA)
Young Adult with Donna Freitas

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