Introduction to Editing Children’s Literature, April 4–May 8 (5 weeks online) SP22


Where: AsynchronousOnline (Sakai)

April 4, 2022

Registration is closed for this class

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"Expand your services by editing books for the sweetest—and most discerning—readers in the world: children!" —Heidi Fiedler, instructor

Important Information About Our Online Courses

Our online courses are conducted through the LAMP Consortium on 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.

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 kid-lit publishers

Week 2: Developmental Editing

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

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.)

What Former Students Have to Say:

“This was such a great class! I learned a lot and have applied it to manuscripts. Love it!” —Angela Dalton

“This has been a great class. I was really on the fence about attending because I thought it might be a bit too introductory since I write for children and am doing the Writing for Children certification program, but I have learned so much!” —Erin Liles

“This was such a fun class! I’ve taken a lot of writing and copyediting classes, but this is one of the very few that has allowed me to focus on children’s literature, which is what I love the most. I am especially thankful for all of your great handouts, which I have neatly saved and stashed away for future use, and your direct feedback on the assignments.” —Toni Weeks

“Thank you, Heidi! You’ve provided a wealth of information and several splashes of inspiration, all sprinkled with warmth and encouragement. I’ve learned a lot.” —Colleen Olle

“This is one of the very best EFA courses I have taken! I’ve learned a lot and also done a lot of thinking way beyond the nuts and bolts of editing children’s books.” —Joan Graham

“I just wanted to say a major THANK YOU. Your detailed answers, honesty about the editing process, and positivity have been incredible. I can see why authors come to you and what makes you a great editor. My only wish is that this class could have been longer!” —Jennifer Webb

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

Refund and Anti-Harassment Policies
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.