Posted by: Kathy Temean | March 2, 2020

CBA Anounces Craft and Business of Writing Children’s Picture Books Live Mentors

Every year when the Children’s Book Academy launches their Craft and Business of Writing Children’s Picture Books interactive e-course, they seek out a group of extraordinary agents and editors to help students directly in live critiquing with kindness webinars with the co-teachers. These are incredibly helpful, insightful, lots of fun, and provide students with access to publishing decision makers in a uniquely warm way. Aside from the comprehensive 6 week curriculum, the daily online interaction, the optional small critique groups, the optional one-on-one critiques with either co-teaching agent Allison Remcheck and special brilliant guest critiquer Frances Gilbert, fabulous now published former student assistants and weekly now published former students guests, and so on, The Lives have absolutely contributed to students now publishing over 377 books. Please stay tuned for the even larger group of Editors and Agents (including the Lives) who will be looking at students work at the end of the course with an eager eye for acquisitions. CBA calls these The Golden Tickets and they are very exciting. Meanwhile, here are this year’s LIVES.

FRANCES GILBERT – Editor in Chief at Random House/Doubleday Books for Young Readers

Frances started her career in children’s books when she was still a child, working in the children’s department of her town library throughout high school. After graduating from university with an M.A. in English, Frances’s first job in publishing was as a Book Club Editor at Scholastic Canada in Toronto. She moved to New York in 2000 to set up a children’s editorial division at Sterling Publishing, where she stayed till 2012. Frances then moved to Random House Children’s Books, where she is Editor-in-Chief of Doubleday Books for Young Readers. Titles she has acquired and edited include: The Purloining of Prince Oleomargarine by Mark Twain, Philip Stead, and Erin Stead; I Don’t Want to Be a Frog by Dev Petty and Mike Boldt; the Hello, World! board book series by Jill McDonald; Bunny’s Book Club by Annie Silvestro and Tatjana Mai-Wyss; and Wordy Birdy by Tammi Sauer and Dave Mottram. In addition to helping others publish children’s books, Frances writes them. Her latest, Go Girls, Go! is quite spectacular!

Nicole Geiger – Agent at Full Circle Literary

Nicole Geiger has 30 years of experience in publishing and has worked in just about every capacity in the industry. As an agent, she is focusing on both fiction and nonfiction in board books, picture books, young chapter books, and middle grade. For 18 years, first as VP and Publisher of Ten Speed Press/Tricycle Press then VP and Publisher of Random House/Tricycle Press, Nicole was the primary acquirer and directed the production and marketing of up to 30 children’s titles yearly.

Books she has either edited or acquired have garnered the Jane Addams Peace Award and Honor, the Pura Belpré Honor, the Ezra Jack Keats Award, The Christopher Award,

Bank Street College’s Best Children’s Books of the Year, as well as numerous ALA Notable Books, CBC Children’s Choices, and Reading Rainbow titles.

Christina Pulles – Exec. Editor at Albert Whitman and Co.

Christina Pulles is the Executive Editor at Albert Whitman and has been passionate about children’s books since she was a young child. She remembers enduring a punishment of a promised library visit being taken away—and her parents still driving her past that glorious building! Prior to Albert Whitman, Christina worked at Sterling Children’s Books and Simon & Schuster and has been lucky to work with authors Dusti Bowling, Alice Faye Duncan, Josh Funk, Casey Lyall, and more. Christina particularly enjoys books with strong underlying themes that help children do well and be well in the world. In her spare time Christina enjoys baking and running (and there’s a direct correlation between the two).

Kelly Delaney – Editor at Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers

Kelly Delaney is an Editor at Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers, where she acquires and edits picture books, middle grade and young adult novels. She has a master’s degree in Publishing: Digital and Print Media from NYU and has been at Random House Children’s Books for five years. In that time, she has been fortunate enough to work with many esteemed authors, including R.J. Palacio, Markus Zusak, Anita Lobel, Eileen Spinelli, Kevin Hawkes, and Norton Juster, and many others. Among the many books she’s edited are: Duncan the Story Dragon by Amanda Driscoll, Sewing Stories by Barbara Herkert and illustrated by Vanessa Brantley-Newton, The Distance to Home by Jenn Bishop, Lucy and Linh by Alice Pung, and Fly! by Karl Newsom Edwards. She is always on the lookout for quirky humor, bright characters, and writers that don’t underestimate their readers.

Alyza Liu, Assistant Editor, Simon & Schuster

Alyza is excited to be acquiring her first children’s picture books. As assistant to Justin Chanda, she’s had the honor of with some incredible talents like Aaron Reynolds, Jessie Sima, Morgan Matson, and many, many more. Prior to Simon & Schuster, Alyza interned at Laura Dail Literary Agency, InkWell Management, Overlook Press, Foundry Literary + Media, Roaring Brook Press, and graduated magna cum laude from New York University, where she majored in East Asian Studies and minored in English and Studio Art. Alyza loves a good story and is particularly looking to acquire diverse, atmospheric, character-driven books with strong voices, distinct sensibilities, and tender hearts among others.

About Dr. Mira Reisberg:

Dr. Mira Reisberg has a PhD in Education and Cultural Studies with a focus on children’s literature. She is an acquiring Editor and Art Director at Clearfork/Spork and is also the Director of the Children’s Book Academy. Her students have published over 370 books and won ever major North American award. Mira’s 8 published children’s books have won awards and sold over 600,000 copies. She lives in a 100 year-old house in Portland, Oregon with her husband and two cats.

Talk tomorrow,



  1. This was a great experience. I had taken Mira and Kelly’s class in the past. They were both awesome. Mira cares so deeply about her students. These mentors look incredible, and I’m excited to see Christina from Albert Whitman mentoring!! Hope all that sign up this session have a super course!!!


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