Digging Even Deeper: Making Graphic Novels

Nov 18, 2023

Online event

Join us online for the first workshop in our DIGGING EVEN DEEPER workshop series. With this workshop, we're taking an even deeper dive into our topic as we spend an afternoon exploring graphic novels.

Event Information


Workshop Part 1 – Making Graphic Novels

This 3-hour intensive workshop is for writers, illustrators, and writer-illustrators. Presented by Katherine Battersby, the workshop will focus on the craft of creating books for young people; specifically the complex but exciting world of making graphic novels, and will appeal to both beginners and more intermediate creators. Together we will examine the history of graphic novels, from story arc and characterisation, to world building, voice, and visual style, with a strong emphasis on both written and visual storytelling (appropriate for writers and illustrators). Each concept will be illustrated using graphic novel examples, drawing from both classic and modern titles, as well as Katherine’s own personal experiences as a graphic novel author and illustrator. Expect an interactive workshop with plenty of opportunities for lively discussion.

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Workshop Part 2 – Graphic Novels and More: From the Editor's Desk

Katherine's editor, Karen Wojtyla, from Margaret K. McElderry, joins us for the final hour of the afternoon. In this workshop, we'll discuss how art and craft meet business when publishing books for children. We'll talk about the creation of graphic novels, picture books, and books for middle-grade and young adult readers, and take a look at how editors and designers work together to help bring to the page and to the public the work of authors and illustrators. This will be a wide-ranging talk, and please feel free to ask questions. Each book has its own story, and rules are made to be broken, but we can examine the broad parameters within which we all work to create memorable books in this exciting field.

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About the Presenter

Katherine is the critically acclaimed author and illustrator of fourteen children’s books published around the world, including many picture books (such as TROUBLE AND Perfect Pigeons) and the popular graphic novel series, CRANKY CHICKEN. Her books have received glowing reviews in The New York Times, starred Kirkus reviews and been named CBC Children’s Choice books. She is regularly booked to speak in schools, libraries, and at festivals, and she is a passionate advocate for literacy and the arts. In another life, Katherine worked for many years as a paediatric occupational therapist, specialising as a children’s counsellor. She has also studied graphic design and loves typography, handmade paper, and vintage teacups. Katherine lives in Ottawa and grew up by the beach in Queensland, Australia.

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About the Editor

Karen Wojtyla edits picture books, middle grade, young adult, some nonfiction—and graphic novel fiction, too. As the Editorial Director of Margaret K. McElderry Books, she has worked with many brilliant writers, including New York Times bestselling authors Cassandra Clare and Margaret Rogerson, National Book Award winner William Alexander, Newbery winner Susan Cooper, Newbery Honor recipient Holly Black, Costa Children’s Book Award winner Hilary McKay, Morris Award finalist Nafiza Azad, Printz Award winner David Almond, Newbery Honor recipient Zilpha Keatley Snyder, Katherine Battersby, Emily Carroll, Susan Fletcher, Shaenon K. Garrity, Tessa Gratton, Stephen W. Martin, Emily Arnold McCully, Colleen Paeff, Ellen Potter, James E. Ransome, and Betsy Uhrig. Karen is attracted to works with strong dialogue, vivid settings, and characters whose journeys move readers to laughter and tears, from authors and artists of diverse backgrounds and across a variety of genres.


Saturday, November 18, 2023. 1:00-5:00 pm EST


Virtual Event. After registering, you will find your registration confirmation under Events on your Member Home. The Zoom link for the event will be found under the green Meeting Info button.


$45 CDN for Premium Members. $60 CDN for Registered Users.

Register early. Seats for this event are limited.


Karen will be open to submissions from workshop attendees for a limited time following the workshop. Details will be provided during the workshop.


The workshop will be recorded, and the recording will be available for one month following the event. Attendees will receive a link and a password by email the week following the event.


Upon completion of payment, you will receive a payment confirmation by email. You will also find a registration confirmation on the website that will include event-specific details. Go to your Member Home and click on My events under the black bar at the top of the page. All events you have registered will be displayed on this page. If there are additional meeting details (i.e. Zoom links for virtual events or materials required for the event), this information will be found under the green Meeting Info button.

Questions about this event? Contact Michelle Jodoin, Regional Advisor, SCBWI Canada East 

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SCBWI Canada East

This event is hosted by SCBWI Canada East. Should you have any questions, please reach out to us using the Contact Us button below.