The Weekly 411 (6/14/24)

© Rebecca Chester

 June 14, 2024 vol. 24

The Weekly 411 gathers all the links added to Kidlit411 each week. To receive this post by email, sign up for our email updatesAre you on Facebook? Join our Kidlit411 group for conversations and camaraderie. This week's illustration is by Rebecca Chester.

Kid Lit News

State of Children's Book Publishing in 2024 (SCBWI webinar on June 14, free for SCBWI members)

Picture Book Giveaway

We're pleased to host a giveaway of the picture book, Your House is Not Just a House, by Idris Goodwin, illustrated by Lorraine Nam (Clarion Books), out now. Enter to win a copy via the Rafflecopter below. 

About The Book:

From breakbeat poet and playwright Idris Goodwin and celebrated artist Lorraine Nam comes a whimsical, irresistible rhyming read-aloud empowering kids to embrace their imagination.  


It seems your home is just

walls, windows, and doors,

but take a closer look—

it's that and so much more!


One rainy day, a kid opens their closet to discover a teleportation chamber. In the adventure of make-believe that follows, we are invited to see our homes as more than places to live—they are vessels for creativity and joy.


About the AuthorIdris Goodwin is an award-winning storyteller for multiple generations. An accomplished playwright, breakbeat poet, content creator, and arts champion, Goodwin is recognized as a culture bearer who celebrates community values and cultivates histories with care. Idris is the author of over sixty original plays, ranging from his hip-hop-inspired breakbeat series to historical dramas to works for young audiences. Driven by a passion for cultural impact and civic engagement, Idris currently serves as artistic director of Seattle Children’s Theatre. Your House Is Not Just a House is his debut picture book. Find him at


About the Illustrator: Lorraine Nam is a paper illustrator and daydreamer. When she is not folding, gluing, and cutting things out of paper, she can be found cooking, reading, or traveling. She currently lives in Brooklyn, New York, and frequently looks out at the New York skyline from her studio window. On a clear night, she is able to see the occasional star. You can visit her online at

a Rafflecopter giveaway


 Picture Book Giveaway

We are pleased to host a giveaway of the picture book, Barrio Rising: The Protest That Built Chicano Park, by María Dolores Águila, illustrated by Magdalena Mora (Penguin Young Readers) out on June 18. Enter to win a copy!

About the Book: Barrio Rising highlights the revolution that built Chicano Park and emphasizes the importance of coming together to create positive change. It creates a space for children to serve as a rallying cry for present-day inequities and an opportunity for discussion and action. The book's backmatter also sheds light on the ongoing struggles faced by Barrio Logan residents and neighboring communities, including the fight for waterfront access, the reduction of emissions from nearby freeways, and the elimination of toxic pollution from industrial businesses near homes and schools.

About the Author: María Dolores Águila is a Chicana poet and writer from San Diego, California. Deeply inspired by Chicane history and art, she seeks to write empowering and inclusive stories about everything she learns. She also loves drinking coffee, browsing the bookshelves at her local library, and spending time with her family.


About the Illustrator:  Magdalena Mora is a Minneapolis-based illustrator and graphic designer. She has illustrated numerous picture books including Still Dreaming/Seguimos Soñando and The Notebook Keeper, both of which were 2023 Pura Belpre Honor award winners. Magdalena grew up between Chicago, Mexico, and California. When not drawing, Magdalena likes reading, people-watching, and trying to find the best tacos in the Twin Cities. Mostly the latter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Conferences, Workshops & Retreats

Aug 1-4 SCBWI Virtual Conference A children's book writing conference spectacular! Join in a vibrant digital environment that will uplift, inspire, and support you in writing and illustrating impactful children's books. Pitch your book to acquiring agents and editors. Get your art in front of industry pros. Explore all aspects of children’s book creation: writing, illustrating, translating, and marketing. Immerse yourself in sessions specifically for illustrators, traditionally published & self-published authors, nonfiction writers, graphic novel creators, picture book writers and more! Every attendee has access to the content of all 50 sessions for up to one month after the conference concludes.

Oct. 5 Picture Book Summit Picture Book Summit is a world-class online conference for picture book writers and illustrators. With keynotes and workshops from bestselling, award-winning authors and illustrators, plus other learning and networking opportunities for aspiring picture book authors around the globe, all from the comfort of home, this is the one conference for children’s writers you don’t want to miss! The team has invested in a robust, online learning “classroom” so they can bring you award-winning, well-respected speakers and workshops LIVE, plus submission opportunities.  

Feb. 21-23, 2025 Big Sur Workshop with Andrea Brown Literary Agency Long recognized as one of the top agencies for children’s book writers and illustrators, Andrea Brown Literary Agency (ABLA) brings top tier professionals together with both beginner and seasoned writers. This popular workshop fills quickly. Two industry professionals will mentor you in very small group sessions where one-on-one feedback is provided. Writers will get the chance to mingle and discuss their works with editors, agents, and published authors throughout the all-inclusive weekend. (Big Sur, California)

Picture Books

3 Big Tips for Writing a Children’s Picture Book Like a Pro

6 Plot Points for Children’s Books (MUST-HAVES)

How Picture Books Can Save Novelists from the Dreaded Rewrite

Five Reasons to Type Up Other Writers' Books

Contests & Awards

June 20 PB Pitch

  • What: pitch your picture book manuscript on Twitter (X)
  • Prize: agent and editor attention

Middle Grade

Middle Grade Novel Outline

Writing Lower Middle Grade Fiction

Top Tips for Writing a Middle-Grade Novel

Middle Grade Novel Structure 101: Stuck in the Middle (Grade) with You

How to Write a Middle Grade Novel- from Start to Finish


Editing and Revising Picture Books

Picture Book Revision Takes 25 Years


  1. Would love an opportunity to win a copy of Barrio Rising. I just watched the author, María Dolores Águila, in an interview on Fox News. My second grade class studies changes in neighborhoods during a unit in ELA. This would be a nice compliment to that unit. And it could build upon a nice discussion on social themes and peaceful engagement. Love the illustrations too!

  2. I'm excited to read both of these fabulous picture books.

  3. These books look great!

  4. Thanks for sharing these wonderful books!

  5. Beautiful books! Congratulations to all involved. I'm excited to read, review, and share both books!

  6. Two fabulous picture books + Kidlit news! Thank you!

  7. Two very different picture books in this week’s issue-both sound terrific but I really love the way Your House is Not Just a House gets the imagination going and presents a home, any home, in such a positive way.

  8. Awesome job, Idris! How imaginative.

  9. Both the books sound wonderful.

  10. This is amazing! Thank you for the bonus giveaways too.

  11. Love imaginative picture books. This one sounds so intriguing.


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