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HURRY! Last chance to write your very own picture book!

Hurry HURRY – registration for My Kid Book Pitch closes TODAY! This course won’t run again until 2023 – don’t miss out, sign up now!

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Every year, art agent Lilla hosts a residency for the artists she represents, either in person or (thanks Covid!) virtually. For the past few years, the focus has been on writing picture books, based on Lilla’s My Kid Book Pitch course, and today we’re thrilled to share not one but TWO gorgeous books written and illustrated by artists that Lilla represents.

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Lilla says: “One of my most favorite things in the world is to help artists make even more brilliant work, develop their unique gifts, and broaden their career opportunities. It’s why I wrote My Kid Book Pitch. So with that in mind, we were incredibly excited to offer our Picture Book Writing Residency to our artists, focusing on writing children’s picture books.”

Want to take the EXACT same course that Lilla’s artists took during the residency? Find out more and sign up here!

Q: Why encourage artists to write picture books?

Lilla says: “They are one of the strongest categories in illustration right now. Editors are specifically looking for authored/illustrated picture books for the unique vision that they provide. We’re commissioning them like crazy, they pay very well, and you get to devote months to a particular project in your style.”

Q: How can I get represented by Lilla?!

Both Katie and Erica were Make Art That Sells students before they were offered representation by Lilla (and they both still take Make Art That Sells classes!). Katie won Lilla’s Global Talent Search all the way back in 2015, and Lilla fell in love with Erica’s art after spotting it in class. These days, Lilla finds almost all of the artists she represents among her students in Make Art That Sells courses – so the best way to get your art in front of her and maybe scoop representation too is to sign up for a course today!



Ari arranges everything combo Katie Vernon

Front cover and spread from Ari Arranges Everything, written and illustrated by Katie.

Katie’s first author-illustrator picture book, Ari Arranges Everything, is an appealing and witty tale about an eccentric child who is obsessed with arranging absolutely anything and everything, from flowers to people. She wrote it on Lilla’s artists’ residency, and it’s available now.

Want to take the same course that Katie and Erica beta tested on the residency? Then HURRY – registration closes TODAY!

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Another spread from Ari Arranges Everything, which contains an important message about accepting your own unique behavioral differences. What would you share in your picture book?

See more of Katie’s art on her website and Instagram, and learn more about Ari Arranges Everything here.


Erica Root
Close to you from far away cover Erica Root

The front cover of Erica’s gorgeous new author-illustrator picture book, Close to You from Far Away, inspired by her relationship with her grandma. What will your picture book be about?

MATS: How did you come up with the story?

Erica says: “The night before the residency, I was lying in bed and suddenly, what would later become Close to You from Far Away flooded my mind and I couldn’t shake it. My grandma was a HUGE part of my life. She was my stability, my confidant, and one of my favorite people in the whole wide world! I wanted to pay tribute to and honor that sort of relationship no matter how much geographical distance might separate people from one another. I also think the message of connection and keeping relationships strong was subconsciously influenced by the fact that covid was in full swing during the book’s conception. The idea of the world feeling this overwhelming sense of separation and isolation was a reality that most of us haven’t felt before but it somehow united us all. Maintaining emotional bonds felt more important than ever before.”

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A character created by Erica for My Kid Book Pitch. Picture books are the perfect opportunity to share your inner kook.

MATS: Had you always wanted to write a picture book?

Erica says: “My quiet fantasy had always been to illustrate children’s books. My mom planted the idea in me from a really young age; she was such a creative person and lived life dreaming of becoming an artist/illustrator. However, it always felt like a pipe dream; and I never thought about writing and illustrating one until Lilla brought me on as one of her artists. Then it really felt attainable when the Kids’ Book Residency was announced, where we got to beta test My Kid Book Pitch.”

MATS: How did My Kid Book Pitch help you? What was it like writing a story with Lilla?

Erica says: “There were a lot of helpful aspects – some of which I didn’t anticipate at all. I will admit, successful workflows are not my strong suit. I have always just chalked it up to being an artist and had convinced myself (aka: tricked myself into believing!) that too much planning is crushing to the creative process. The course really proved to me that isn’t impossible for me to work with an intentional plan and that it can actually encourage the flow of ideas rather than smothering them.

Year of Weeks Erica Root

A Year of Weeks, also written and illustrated by Erica, is a roadmap for trying 52 awesome new things. Share your passion in your very own picture book – sign up here.

Erica adds: “While soaking up tons of industry knowledge, working through the course layout, material, and worksheets, I was able to calm the constant tornado of thoughts, images, and ideas that can often be really distracting to us artists (fellow scattered art buddies, I know you know exactly what I’m talking about!). That intentionality left a lot more open space to think logically about the story flow, character development, and illustration process.”

Erica continues: “It was also incredibly inspiring to have Lilla and the other artists sharing ideas with such enthusiasm and passion. It became a sort of creative think tank that you can’t achieve when working alone. That energy is contagious and invigorating – it’s something I have always valued and found so exhilarating since I experienced it in the Facebook group of my first MATS course!”

Finally, Erica says: “Having Lilla teach this course was seriously insane. Receiving her feedback (even when it wasn’t directed towards me) was so helpful since I could take the same advice and apply it to my story as well. There were a lot of things that I didn’t know about the children’s books that helped me to understand important factors to consider while writing and illustrating. Being so unfamiliar with the world of creating children’s books and knowing that Lilla has so much experience with the industry, I felt extremely fortunate that she was guiding us through the process. That kind of first-hand knowledge is invaluable and not easy to come by!”

See more of Erica’s art on her website and Instagram, and learn more about Close to You from Far Away here.

Are you ready to create your winning ready-to-send children’s picture book story pitch? Then hurry hurry, don’t put it off – sign up now!

I want it

See you in class!

Lots of love

The Make Art That Sells team xxx

The Childrens Book Bundle Banner 2 scaled Make Art That Sells HURRY! Last chance to write your very own picture book!

P.S. Last chance to save 25% on My Kid Book Pitch with The Children’s Book Bundle 2022! Get My Kid Book Pitch, Illustrating Children’s Books PLUS and Lilla’s Art Recipes: Drawing Faces for just £395/approx. $436 (down from £527/approx. $582)! Find out more and sign up here.

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