Margie Lawson

Changing your Writing World


“You have to write the book that wants to be written. And if the book will be too difficult for grown-ups, then you write it for children.” ~Madeleine L’Engle

There’s a lot of information—and even more misinformation—about writing books for kids floating around online. This course is designed for aspiring middle grade and young adult authors at any stage in the process, whether you have an idea for a novel but don’t know where to begin, or you’ve already ridden the query-go-round trying to find an agent for your first completed draft.

Lessons will cover craft topics such as plotting, drafting, voice, world-building, and revising techniques. We’ll also cover what comes after you have a polished book, self-publishing versus traditional publishing, how to write a query letter—along with exclusive interviews from a Scholastic editor and a former agent with Greenburger Associates on what they look for in MG and YA submissions. Students will have the opportunity to have pages of their novels critiqued.

This class comes in two flavors: basic and advanced.

The basic level will get all of the lessons, interaction with other students and the teacher, and basic feedback.

Those looking for more advanced editing will receive a detailed editorial letter on an excerpt of their work. Due to the intense amount of work involved in this edit, there are only 10 spots available at this level.


Michelle Schusterman

Michelle Schusterman is the author of over a dozen books for kids and teens, including SPELL & SPINDLEOLIVE AND THE BACKSTAGE GHOST, and the series THE KAT SINCLAIR FILES and I HEART BAND. She co-authored the YA novel THE PROS OF CONS with Alison Cherry and Lindsay Ribar, and co-authored the SECRETS OF TOPSEA series under the name M. Shelley Coats. She also wrote SPOTLIGHT ON CODING CLUB!, the fourth book in the New York Times Bestselling GIRLS WHO CODE series. 

Her upcoming projects include THE MYSTERY OF THE MASKED MEDALIST, book #1 in the Kudo Kids series co-authored with Olympic medalists Maia and Alex Shibutani to be released May 2020, and THE DOG'S MEOW, a Scholastic clubs & fairs pick out September 2020.

Michelle’s novels have received many accolades, including starred reviews from Kirkus, Booklist, and Publisher’s Weekly, multiple Junior Library Guild selections, and inclusion on the American Library Association’s Rainbow List and Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers List, the CBCC Best of 2019 List, and the NC State College of Education Comic Relief Reading List.

A former Texas public school teacher, Michelle spent six years in New York as a creative writing instructor at Writopia Lab in Manhattan, where her students received honors such as Scholastic Art & Writing Gold Keys and acceptance into the Worldwide Plays Festival. Michelle recently moved back to her hometown and teaches writing workshops both in Dallas and online.

Instagram: @michelleschusterman



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