Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Writing from the Inside Out Retreats

Writing from the Inside Out banner

Ready to dig in to writing a new book (or two or three)? This retreat series is for you! Writing from the Inside Out retreats are a two-part series designed to help you create the best stories you can, then polish your submission package and get your work to interested agents.


Here’s how it works:
During the Development Retreat (part 1), you attend a collaborative retreat with other interested writers. This retreat will focus on one type of writing (novels, picture books, nonfiction, or graphic novels depending on the year). Experienced writers will guide you through the process of developing your story, and you will work in small groups to iron out the kinks as you go.

During the year following the Development Retreat, you will have check-ins to keep you on track to a finished—even polished—story (or more than one, if you’re writing shorter books).

Complete Your Submission Package Retreat (part 2) takes place one year after the Development Retreat. This one will feature an agent who will help you work on your query, pitch, and synopsis. And you’ll get exclusive query opportunities (to a short list of agents and editors) to boot!

You can attend Part 1 without attending Part 2, but you cannot attend Part 2 without first participating in Part 1. Why? Because agents want to see your best work, and by participating in the earlier stages of this retreat series, your work will be farther along and more likely to be ready for an agent’s consideration.


2020-2021 – Novels
2021-2022 – Picture books
2022-2023 – Nonfiction
2023-2024 – Graphic Novels
2024-2025 – Novels (and the cycle starts again)

Questions? Ask our Retreat Coordinator, Nancy Sharp Wagner