SCBWI-MI Mentorship Program

Untitled design - 2024-02-20T072238.538.jpg

Kim Rogers- 2023-2024 Prose PB Mentor

Kim Rogers is the author of JUST LIKE GRANDMA, illustrated by Julie Flett; A LETTER FOR BOB, illustrated by Jonathan Nelson; and I AM OSAGE: HOW CLARENCE TINKER BECAME THE FIRST NATIVE AMERICAN MAJOR GENERAL, illustrated by Bobby Von Martin comes out in winter of 2024, all with Heartdrum. She is a contributor to ANCESTOR APPROVED: INTERTRIBAL STORIES FOR KIDS (Heartdrum, 2021). Kim is an enrolled member of Wichita and Affiliated Tribes and a member of the National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition. She lives with her family on her tribe’s ancestral homelands in Oklahoma.

Untitled design - 2024-02-20T071931.657.jpg

Leslie Helakoski- 2023-2024 Verse PB Mentor

Leslie Helakoski is the author of 15 picture books and she sometimes (but not always) illustrates them. Her newest addition, ARE YOUR STARS LIKE MY STARS? (illustrated by Heidi Woodward Sheffield) has been included in the 2020 Ultimate List of Diverse Children’s Books. Leslie’s award-winning books are known for their humor and word play. Recent titles include READY OR NOT, WOOLBUR GOES TO SCHOOL and HOOT & HONK JUST CAN’T SLEEP. Upcoming titles are WHEN THE RAIN CAME DOWN and BACK TO THE WOODS. Leslie served as a regional advisor for Michigan SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) for 11 years. She runs the popular PB&J workshop at Highlights each summer on crafting children’s books. She was awarded the 2020 Gwen Frostic Award for her work in literacy.

Coming Soon! (1).jpg

2024-2025 Mentorship Information Coming Soon

SCBWI-MI Mentorship Program

2023-2024 Picture Book Mentorship Program

We’re delighted to announce that SCBWI-MI will hold TWO picture book text opportunities for our 2023-2024 mentorship.

 *** New deadline*** The submission window is May 15-June 10th, *2023. 

 Each mentor is limited to 30 entries In the past, picture book text mentorships have filled up quickly, even with two mentors. Apply early to avoid disappointment. Mentorship Coordinator Jay Whistler will occasionally provide updates on the listserv and other SCBWI-MI social media regarding how many slots are left. If you’re really worried, you can email her at Submission Fee is $30, nonrefundable

The Verse mentorship with author Leslie Helakoski 

Our interview with Leslie can be found on this post on the Mitten Blog. 

The Prose mentorship with author Kim Rogers 

Our interview with Kim can be found on this post on the Mitten Blog.  


You must be a current SCBWI member living in MI

“Won and Done” rule: You must not have previously won a text mentorship (novel, picture book, nonfiction).

Exception: if you have previously won an illustration mentorship, you are eligible for a text mentorship.


May 15-June 5–registration window open

June 6-July 6–Judges evaluate entries, score, and return to mentorship coordinator

July 7-August 4–Mentor evaluates top entries and chooses a winner

Early August–Mentees notified they have won

Mid-August–Winners announced on The Mitten blog, the website, and various social media

September–Mentorships begin

Late September to early October–Feedback returned to all mentorship entries

To register, starting May 15, click HERE

For questions not answered in any of the links above, contact Mentorship Coordinator Jay Whistler at

Shop Talks (4).jpg

Submission instructions

Shop Talks (3).jpg


Shop Talks (5).jpg