DAVID LITCHFIELD PICTURE BOOK WORKSHOP
THIS EVENT IS NOW OVER. READ BELOW TO SEE WHAT FUN WAS HAD…
WHAT WAS COVERED
What a fabulous picture book workshop we enjoyed with international bestselling author and illustrator David Litchfield, the Director of his literary agency, Arabella Stein, and publisher at Quarto Kids, (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books and Wide Eyed Editions), Katie Cotton.
We were taken through the process of how a picture book comes together and explored some practical exercises on where ideas come from. Spider maps, venn diagrams and sketching are all processes David applies for planning his stories. So he spent time working with the group to create stories and develop characters in this way. In addition, David’s lively presentation and short exercises were supported by Arabella and Katie. They explained how agents and publishers work with authors to produce trends for today’s market, and revealed what they look for in a pitch. With the opportunity to take up a private one-to-one with Arabella or Katie, the day was truly an all-round picture book workshop experience.
Our venue was The Discover Story Centre in Stratford, and we could not have been happier with our choice. The location, the organisation and the team on hand to support us throughout the day were all superb and, with a number of food allergies in our number, all our catering needs were met with the delicious food on offer.
In addition we were treated to entry for the Fairy Tale exhibition which David played a part in providing illustration for. Our course attendees all said this was the icing on the cake for a perfect day.
So, thank you, Discover Story! We cannot rate Discover highly enough as a venue, and it will definitely be our first choice when organising a writing for children workshop in London in the future.
DAVID LITCHFIELD is a multi-award winning illustrator and author. As well as his own books, Grandad’s Secret Giant, The Bear and The Piano, its sequel The Bear, The Piano, The Dog and The Fiddle and his most recent thing of beauty Lights on Cotton Rock, he has sold books in over 25 countries and counting. His illustrated books and covers for multiple authors keeps him busy too and he loves collaborating with authors over the text they provide. His artwork is often found in magazines, newspapers and t-shirts. David provided huge inspiration, was funny, engaging and a natural presenter. Our course attendees went home with a head full of tips on their own storytelling ideas.
Watch our live, interactive interview with David, which took place in April 2019. We left the room completely inspired that day, and know you will too.
A fast thinker and reactor, ARABELLA STEIN is able to inspire and encourage artists and publishers. She recognises that setting up the best collaboration between a publisher and an artist is key and has worked with a great number of authors and illustrators. Arabella is particularly drawn to artwork with an immediate and unforgettable impact; individual, yet relatable characters and a narrative that shows and never tells.
Representing both established illustrators and authors and those at the beginning of their careers, Arabella happily gave one-to-ones to our group. Those who took up the opportunity said they found it useful in terms of which direction to take their story next. Showcasing her brilliance, her talk was entertaining and informative too, and our attendees loved it.
Before becoming a children’s picture book publisher and author KATIE COTTON studied English at Oxford University. As editor at Frances Lincoln Children’s Books (FLCB), she edited both the 2016 and 2017 Waterstones Illustrated Book Category winners – The Bear and the Piano by David Litchfield and There’s a Tiger in the Garden by Lizzy Stewart – and edited the initial titles in the bestselling Little People, Big Dreams series. Now, overseeing the picture book list at FLCB, she has commissioned high-profile titles such as Grandad Mandela and the bestseller Greta and the Giants. Shortlisted for Bookseller Editor of the Year 2018 Award, she loves nothing more than that frisson of excitement when a fantastic new story lands on her desk. FLCB do not accept unsolicited submissions (submissions that don’t come through an agent) so our course attendees were delighted to have the opportunity to pitch to her directly. And the feedback we received afterwards reflected how Katie’s expertise and positive encouragement was a really useful element to the day.