Fall Craft Intensives: Charlottesville, VA

Oct 14, 2023

Hillsdale Conference Center

Join us for a day of craft and comraderie! Choose one or two intensives and make sure to join us for lunch too. Interested in feedback? Make sure to sign up with a consultation from one of our faculty.

Date and Time:

Oct 14th

Morning Session: 9am-12pm

Lunch Social for all attendees: 12-1pm

Afternoon Session: 1-4pm


Each intensive session: $75, members / $85, non-members

Lunch included (menu to come)


Written-only feedback: $55

Written feedback + 20-minute zoom call: $75


Hillsdale Conference Center

Morning Session

Rhyme Time Strategies for Writing Rhyming Picture Books that Sing with Debra Shumaker and Tracey Kyle (1).png

For picture book writers:

Power up your picture books with language that ignites imagination and invites repeating readings. With examples from mentor texts and practice in guided writing exercises, you’ll explore how strong verbs and targeted language support readers and listeners in both comprehension and enjoyment. Dig into poetic techniques, rhetorical devices and grammar choices designed to amp up the “readaloudability” and kid appeal of your text. You’ll leave with a clear understanding of the many ways language can be used effectively in picture books.

Afternoon Session

Rhyme Time Strategies for Writing Rhyming Picture Books that Sing with Debra Shumaker and Tracey Kyle.png

For novelists:

One of the most common reasons for rejection by an editor or agent is that your characters are flat or one-dimensional. This workshop will explore a number of ways you can delve deeper into character. In fact, participants are encouraged to approach each of the hands-on exercises in the persona of one (or more) of your characters. We’ll discuss habits, mannerisms, dialogue, thoughts and internalizations, emotions, gut reactions, interior and exterior lives, etc. Please bring a hard copy of at least one chapter of your current work-in-progress and highlighters in four different colors. You’ll leave with at least three handouts and even more ideas for getting into your characters’ minds and voices.

Learn more about your faculty:


Anne Marie Pace

Anne Marie Pace is a picture book author. Her many books include GROUNDHUG DAY, SUNNY’S TOW TRUCK SAVES THE DAY, BUSY-EYED DAY, and the four books of the VAMPIRINA BALLERINA series (Disney-Hyperion, illustrated by LeUyen Pham), which has been adapted into Disney Junior’s Emmy-nominated hit animated series VAMPIRINA. Her latest book is MOUSE CALLS, illustrated by Erin Kraan, from Beach Lane Books/S&S. She lives with her family in Virginia.


Edie Hemingway

Edith (Edie) Hemingway is co-author of two Civil War novels, both licensed by Scholastic Book Fairs and optioned for films. Her middle grade novel, Road to Tater Hill (Delacorte Press), won a Parents’ Choice Gold Award and was listed on Bank Street College’s Best Books List and several state lists. That Smudge of Smoke (BeaLu Books), her newest MG novel is set in two timeframes and told from different points of view. An MFA graduate of Spalding University’s Naslund-Mann School of Writing, Edie taught writing for children and young adults as a member of their faculty for nine years. She served four years as Regional Advisor for the MD/DE/WV chapter of SCBWI and is an active member of the Children’s Book Guild of Washington, DC.

Important Information



Hillsdale Conference Center 550 Hillsdale Drive Charlottesville, VA 22901 (434) 817-9333



Submit material for a critique with one of our faculty. We're offering two different kinds of consultations: a written only critique for $55 and a written critique plus a 20-min zoom meeting for $75.