NESCBWI Spring 2024 Virtual Agent Editor Day

May 04, 2024

Online event

New England SCBWI will once again be hosting Agent/Editor Day for picture books/picture book dummies, portfolios, graphic novels, middle grade/YA novels, and chapter books. This is a popular event that sells out fast and the new SCBWI website does not allow us to password protect and use a lottery.

What is Agent Editor Day?

Agent Editor Day is a wonderful way to get feedback on your WIP or completed work. 

Attendees will select a Zoom breakout room with up to 6 other authors/illustrators and a publishing professional. Each participant will have the opportunity to share their screen with the first five pages of their MS or their full picture book manuscript, dummy, or portfolio. Participants will present as much of their work as possible in five minutes, and will then have ten minutes to get feedback from the faculty mentor and the group.

The goal of this day is for you to receive helpful feedback on your work. You do not need additional information such as your elevator pitch or your bio. Please listen during your critique unless asked a direct question, and save your questions to the end. When it is time for the other members of your group to go, you may find listening to the professional critique received by others will be just as helpful as the information you receive about yours. Please be respectful of the members of your group by sticking to the time limit.

At the end of the day, attendees will have the opportunity to submit their work to most of the publishing professionals that attend so even if you don't get your top choice, you can use the feedback you receive to create many opportunities. About a week after the event, you will receive the submission guidelines. You have a two-month window to submit following their guidelines. Do not feel you need to send it in the next day. Take the time to use your feedback and the feedback of others in your group to give your manuscript/dummy/portfolio its best shot.

Schedule of Event


8:30 a.m.— Zoom Opens

8:45 a.m.— Event welcome

9:00 a.m to 9:20 a.m.— Mini Keynote address with Editor Alison Weiss and Author Pam Vaughan discussing the editor/author relationship

9:20 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.— Breakout rooms for critiques for 2 hours; 15 minutes per participant

Each participant will have the opportunity to share their screen or read the first five pages of their MS, their picture book dummy, their picture book manuscript, or their portfolio. Participants will present for five minutes, and will then have ten minutes to get feedback from the faculty mentor and the group.

11:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. — Break

11:45 a.m. to 12:45ish p.m.— Panel discussion w/ faculty about what they are acquiring

12:45 p.m.— Wrap up

Meet the Faculty

Foyinsi Adegbonmire, Feiwel & Friends / Macmillan

Foyinsi Adegbonmire is an Editor at Feiwel & Friends, an imprint of Macmillan Children's Publishing Group. She acquires Middle Grade and Young Adult fiction, from contemporary to mystery to grounded science-fiction, and enjoys lighthearted stories with conversational narrative voices. She was named a 2021 PW Star Watch Honoree and her acquisitions include New York Times-bestseller Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé. When not reading or thinking about her very large TBR pile, she can be found watching Black sitcoms from the 90s/early 2000s.

Eve Adler, Red Fox Literary

Eve Adler worked as an editor for over sixteen years before becoming an agent. She's building her list with authors and illustrators of board books, picture books, early readers, chapter books, and middle grade projects. She’s drawn to stories that make kids feel comforted, loved, and understood; to diverse voices; to ideas that break the mold; to projects that meet kids where they are developmentally; and to books that expand kids’ worlds while helping them understand their own. After years of working at publishers, Eve loves how agenting offers the ability to discover talent anywhere, to develop ideas with authors and illustrators, and to find the right home for projects. She enjoys being an advisor and cheerleader for clients throughout their careers, and is eager to find new talent!

Orlando Dos Reis, Scholastic Press

Orlando Dos Reis is a senior editor at Scholastic acquiring primarily middle-grade and young adult fiction, as well as some graphic novels. His titles range from commercial to literary. He received his B.A. in creative writing from Virginia Tech and his M.A. in English with a concentration on children's and young adult literature from Kansas State University. He lives in New York City.

Leyla Erkan, Christy Ottaviano Books/Little, Brown

Since joining Christy Ottaviano Books as an editorial assistant in 2021, I’ve supported VP Publisher Christy Ottaviano and Senior Editor Jessica Anderson on their diverse range of titles spanning age categories, formats, and genres. Most recently, I worked on the UK picture book import One Day at a Time by Rachel Ip, illustrated by Natelle Quek, a thoughtful story about divorce through the lens of two siblings. I am interested in young adult, with a particular focus on romantasy; horror with unreliable teen characters; urban sci-fi with a video gaming twist; and contemporary coming-of-age stories, especially centering platonic friendship or queer characters.

Allison Hellegers, Stimola Literary Studio

Allison Hellegers is a Foreign Rights Director and Literary Agent for Stimola Literary Studio. After literary scouting, she was the Director of Foreign Rights for Alloy Entertainment and Rights People, and she continues to oversee all foreign, subsidiary and film rights for Stimola Literary Studio while growing her client list. Allison is drawn to works for all ages that push boundaries, evoke emotion, and take readers on a journey. Her adult co-agent clients include New York Times bestselling author Lucy Adlington (The Dressmakers of Auschwitz) and Reese Book Club pick Holly Smale (Cassandra in Reverse). She’s looking to take on more fiction and non-fiction clients, and is interested in pop culture, comedy, science, journalism, history, and health/wellness. Her young adult clients include award winning authors Colby Cedar Smith (Call Me Athena) and Rebecca Caprara (Spin) and as well as graphic novel clients Teo Duvall (Brooms) and Mari Costa (Belle of the Ball). In YA, she loves a big hook and bold characters that sweep her off her feet. Middle grade will always be a favorite area, and she enjoys a classic, literary voice with humor and heart, and/or a touch of magical realism. Her middle-grade clients include ALA Notable Elaine Dimopolous (The Remarkable Rescue at Milkweed Meadow) and beloved Australian author Nova Weetman (It All Begins With Jellybeans), who also has her first adult memoir coming out this year (Love & Other Scenes). She represents a select few picture book clients, including Horn Book award winner Dinah Johnson (H is for Harlem) and Ezra Jack Keats honor winner Marta Bartolj (Every Little Kindness). Allison attends Frankfurt and Bologna each year and has been an industry speaker and on staff at numerous conferences and events. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, son, and rescue mutt.

Andrew Karre, Dutton Books

Andrew Karre is senior executive editor at Dutton Books, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers Group, a division of Penguin Random House. Over the course of his twenty year career, he's had the pleasure of working with award winning and bestselling authors, including A.S. King, Malinda Lo, Ibi Zoboi, Candice Iloh, Cory McCarthy, Joy McCullough, Ashely Hope Pérez, Kristin Cashore, and Shannon Gibney. He lives in St. Paul, Minnesota with his family.

Chris Krones, HarperCollins / Clarion

Chris Krones (they/them) has been an editor in children's book publishing for more than a decade and a half. They are also the author of many books for young readers including the forthcoming UNDER ONE RAINBOW. In their free time, they are a dj, a weightlifter, a coach, and a loving pet parent of two dogs and a cat. They live with their spouse in Boston.

Carina Licon, Henry Holt Books for Young Readers

Carina Licon is an Assistnat Editor at Henry Holt Books for Young Readers (Macmillan Children’s). In picture books, she seeks: books that explore difficult experiences/emotions in nuanced ways; books that center BIPOC and queer joy; intergenerational households/settings; the fun, imaginary, and magical; the humorous, goofy, and silly; the tender, touching, and sweet. In middle grade and young adult, she seeks: complex, whipsmart protagonists; contemporary YA horror and thrillers in the vein of Courtney Summers; spooky, atmospheric MG; gothic YA horror or fantasy; stories about mental health; coming-of-age stories; friendship stories; a modern day Jessica Darling series that reflects our diverse world; intergenerational BIPOC stories; stories of everyday life in a BIPOC household (especially Latinx); romance with lots! of! angst!; contemporary, grounded fantasy OR high fantasy with strong real world/relatable themes.

Sydnee Monday, Kokila/PYR

Associate Editor Sydnee Monday joined Kokila/Penguin Young Readers in May of 2018. Their growing list features debuts from Gwendolyn Wallace, Kiera Wright-Ruiz, Walela Nehanda, and more. Prior to Kokila, she worked at NPR, the PEN/Faulkner Foundation, and Sankofa Bookstore in Washington, D.C. They're a graduate of Howard University.

Kortney Nash, Godwin Books/ Henry Holt Books for Young Readers

Kortney Nash is an assistant editor at Godwin Books, an imprint of Henry Holt Books for Young Readers. She graduated from UC Berkeley with a Bachelor of Arts in 2021 and has been working in children’s publishing ever since. She has a particular love for sci fi and stories that champion queer voices (and a soft spot for laugh-out-loud funny picture books). When she’s not reading, she can be found sewing or practicing new spreads with her tarot cards. Kort is currently based in Jersey but grew up in sunny south Los Angeles.

Sandra Proudman, Gallt & Zacker Literary Agency

Sandra Proudman (she/her/ella) is a literary associate at Gallt & Zacker Literary Agency, assisting Marietta Zacker and representing a small list of authors and author-illustrators. She is passionate about bringing underrepresented voices to the forefront and is also a committee member of #LatinxPitch. When not busily immersed in all things publishing, you can find her spending time with her amazing husband and adorable toddler, catching up on all her shows, and taking care of her vegetable garden. She is also the author of the YA fantasy, Salvación, (coming 2025) and the editor of the Latinx anthology RELIT: 16 Latinx Remixes of Classic Stories (out now!). Connect with her on Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok @SandraProudman.

Aliza Razell, The CAT Agency

Aliza represents visual storytellers with distinctive, unique voices. She is inspired every day by the illustrators and author-illustrators she represents, and is honored to help bring their stories into the world. She began her Publishing career at Candlewick Press, where she spearheaded & coordinated illustrator searches and negotiated illustrator contracts. With a degree in Classics and a background in visual art, she is passionate about storytelling and the magical place where words and images collide. Aliza grew up homeschooled and barefoot in the woods, and has lived in Finland and Scotland before returning to her home state of Massachusetts where she lives with her partner John (who is a spreadsheet magician) and their cat Corryvreckan (who is Aliza’s familiar). Outside of agenting, Aliza is a multimedia photographer, tarot enthusiast, and an aerial circus artist.

Sera Rivers, Speilburg Literary Agency

Sera Rivers is a Literary Agent at Speilburg Literary, an AALA member, and a writer. She holds an MFA in writing for children from Simmons University. Prior to agenting, Sera worked as an editor in educational publishing for seven years. Sera lives in Western Massachusetts with her partner and their puppy Jett. When she’s not reading or writing, she can be found running all over New England training for her next marathon. Check out her website at for her MSWL, events, and updates. She tweets at @writeloudly.

Chris Russo, Holiday House Publishing Inc.

Chris graduated from Pratt Institute with a BFA in Communications Design (Illustration) in 2011, and has been a designer at Holiday House Publishing at a full-time capacity since 2016. He is also a freelance illustrator, has sold comics and artwork at shows like MoCCA Fest and SPX, and the author/illustrator of Cat Likes Red.

Kelsey Sullivan, Disney Hyperion

Kelsey Sullivan is an associate editor with Disney Hyperion. She works on mostly young adult titles that have a darker twist to them. She loves murder mysteries with strong female characters working to solve the case, but she also has a soft spot for voice-y coming of age stories. In her free time Kelsey enjoys watching the Housewives shout at each other and lifting weights. She is based in New York.

Natalia Vázquez Torres, Charlesbridge Publishing

Natalia Vázquez Torres is a Latine assistant editor at Charlesbridge, where she works on fiction and nonfiction picture books, chapter books, and middle-grade and young adult novels. She graduated from the University of Puerto Rico with a BA in creative writing and foreign languages, and received her MFA in creative writing and publishing from Emerson College. As manager of Charlesbridge’s Bilingual-Spanish program, Natalia has edited several Spanish editions, including Abuelita y yo hacemos un flan by Adriana Bergstrom-Hernández, Mil mariposas blancas by Jessica Betancourt-Perez and Karen Lynn Williams, and the bilingual editions of the Storytelling Math series. Natalia is also developing her own frontlist titles, which includes stories with unique family structures, environmental issues, and adventures, among others.

Alison Weiss, Pixel & Ink

Alison S. Weiss has been in publishing for over fifteen years. She is currently acquisitions editor at Pixel+Ink (part of the Trustbridge Media Group), a publisher focused exclusively on series publishing with transmedia potential. Her series include The Curious League of Detectives and Thieves by Tom Phillips, Plotting the Stars by Michelle A. Barry, The Winterton Deception by Janet Sumner Johnson, Clara Poole by Taylor Tyng, The Sinister Secrets by Sean Ferrell, illustrated by Graham Carter, The Second Favorite Daughters Club by Colleen Oakes, Shiver-by-the-Sea by Erin Dionne, illustrated by Jenn Harney, and Sky & Ty by Steve Breen among many others. Alison ran her own editorial consultancy, working with publishers including Simon & Schuster, Audible, and Arctis, as well as private clients, and was editorial director at Sky Pony Press. Her books have been nominated for and received many awards and honors, among them a William C. Morris finalist and Edgars nominations, starred reviews, and have appeared on numerous end-of-year and state lists. You can follow her on Twitter, Bluesky, and Threads at @alioop7 and learn more about Pixel+Ink at