Introduction to Children’s Literature, March 4-April 5 (5 weeks online) SP20


Where: AsynchronousOnline (Sakai)

March 4, 2020

Registration is closed for this class



Expand your services by editing books for the best readers in the world: children! This class is designed for editors who are interested in working on children’s books but aren’t sure how to get started.

Week 1: Introduction to Children’s Books

  • Becoming a children’s book editor
  • The editor’s job
  • What makes children’s books different from adult books?
  • A quick look at age ranges and genres
  • An introduction to kidlit publishers

Week 2: Developmental Editing

  • Character
  • Plot
  • Theme
  • Respecting the reader
  • Trends and marketablity

Week 3: Line Editing

  • Voice
  • Dialogue
  • POV
  • Readability and leveling

Week 4: Understanding Genres

  • Board books
  • Picture books
  • Chapter books
  • Middle grade
  • YA
  • Poetry
  • Nonfiction

Week 5: Working with Authors and Publishers

  • Author mindset
  • Self publishing
  • Submitting to agents and publishers
  • Marketing your services

The class will include personalized feedback on assignments, a lively Q&A message board, and a chance to connect with other editors who love to talk shop and trade ideas. Expect to spend lots of time reading children’s books and thinking about what makes a book special. If you’re not already, you’ll also get the chance to become passionate about children’s literature.

(Please note while we will touch on all age ranges, lessons will focus on board books, picture books, and chapter books, partly because shorter page counts will ease analysis and discussion, but also because many of the same techniques that are used to edit adult books can be applied to middle grade and YA, while the younger titles require a distinctly different approach.)

Writer and editor Heidi Fiedler has worked on more than 300 books for clients ranging from Target to Barnes & Noble. She does the deep thinking that’s needed to turn an idea into a book that has the power to spark our curiosity and make us all feel a little less alone. The books she creates are quirky, playful, highly visual, and often philosophical. After working in publishing for over ten years, she’s excited to see her own picture books and chapter books making their way into the world. Learn more about Heidi and the work she does at

A Note About the EFA's Online Courses

Our online courses are conducted through Sakai, a learning management system (LMS). You never need to be at your computer at any specific hour. More information about how these asynchronous classes are conducted is available here. Information on our refund policy is available here. All participants in EFA courses must abide by our anti-harassment policy, which you can find here.


Office Closed Monday April 8.

The EFA Offices will be closed Monday, April 8, 2024. We will reopen on Tuesday, April 9. Job postings, discussion list subscriptions, and other customer service requests may not be responded to until then.

Solar eclipse