What is the Master Course?

This is an intensive self-guided workshop on the eight Core Principles of picture book writing and editing.

  • Intensive: you will receive over 100 pages worth of content to read and apply as you write or revise your manuscript.
  • Self-guided: each week you will receive a packet with an in-depth explanation of the relevant Core Principle and a related worksheet. Once you receive the materials, you can work at your own pace in applying them.
  • Workshop: you will be expected to apply the principles you are learning to the study of other picture books as well as in revising your own work.
  • Core Principles: this program focuses on eight key principles that make-up the foundation of all good picture book writing. Each weekly lesson guides you through one of the Core Principles in a detailed and comprehensive manner. At the end of the course you will understand when and how to use these principles to create your best work.

How is the workshop structured?

This workshop was developed combining years of research, writing and editing. The program is specifically designed to make it easy for you to grasp these concepts and immediately apply them to your work.

  1. Presentation. The Core Principle is introduced and explained. In this section you will receive in-depth and detailed explanations about the principle and why it works so effectively.
  2. Practice. The Core Principle is broken down and studied in three different picture books.
  3. Application: a Worksheet guides you to apply the Core Principle to your own manuscripts, analyzing what works and why, as well as identifying ways of improving your writing.

What are the Core Principles?

1. Theme

2. Story Structure (Plot-driven stories)

3. Story Structure (Character-driven stories)

4. World-building

5. Character-building (Part 1: POV, Voice, Stakes, Agency)

6. Character-building (Part 2: MRUs, Lies/Wants/Needs, Character Suffering)

7. Showing vs. Telling

8. Three Act Structures

Bonus: Writing Tips

Bonus: Revision Tips


What are people saying about this course?

You can read all course testimonials here.

I learned about Karla Valenti’s master course through a critique member. When I heard her positive reviews I was interested. As I witnessed her manuscript transform I became resolute. I registered for the workshop with high expectations. Karla surpassed them. Her course is well-crafted and superbly executed… read more.

Jennifer Fier

Children's Book Writer

Even agented writers will benefit from Karla’s Master Course, which breaks down everything you’ve ever wanted to better understand about the crafting of picture books, their structure, their mechanics, and what makes them more (or less) powerful to a reader… read more.

Katelyn Aronson

Children's book writer

This is an excellent course – well-structured, in-depth and informative.  Even if you are not a beginner but just want to hone your writing, Karla’s patience, passion and knowledge prove invaluable… read more.

Fiona Halliday

Children's Book Writer

If writing picture books was a college major, this class would be a requirement! For the first time in my life, I began to understand what makes a picture book work and why. Karla’s knowledge, experience, and kindness shone through in every lesson, critique, comment, and email. No matter where you are on your journey, you will benefit from this class…read more.

Becky Scharnhorst

Children’s book writer

I recently finished taking Karla Valenti’s Picture Book Master Class with the mentoring component. I highly recommend this practical course to move your writing to the next level. Even though I’ve taken other seminars and webinars in my writing journey, much of what Karla offered was new, a new spin on something I had learned before, or a deepening of the concept. I found Karla to be generous with her time and talent, honest but kind, and a consummate professional… read more.

Jennifer L. Raudenbush

Children's Book Writer

Sign me up!

The Master Course on Writing and Editing Picture Books is available for $179.00.

You can also purchase the Master Course Plus which includes the Master Course and one-on-one coaching as you work through a picture book manuscript. With this option you will receive a total of eight critiques on your manuscript and I will be available to answer any questions along the way. $279.00.

The purchase of either option entitles you for a 25% discount on your next Premium manuscript critique. This course also includes access to a private Master Course Facebook Group where you can explore these concepts in further detail, ask questions, or share your own insights. The program is ongoing and you can start at anytime.

Are you ready to become a Master Picture Book writer?

Select one of the options below or you can make a payment directly at paypal.me/KarlaValenti

Feel free to reach out to me with any questions about this or any other service. karla.p.valenti [at] gmail [dot] com.