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From the Agent's Desk

What Makes a Picture Book Great

In this webinar, agent Sean McCarthy shares what picture books look like on his side of the desk, including:

  • What separates a good picture book from a great one
  • Submission pet-peeves
  • How prolific should picture book authors be
  • His wishlist for fiction and nonfiction picture books
  • Plus, lots more!


Your Instructor


Sean McCarthy
Sean McCarthy

Before founding Sean McCarthy Literary Agency, Sean began his publishing career as an editorial intern at Overlook Press and then moved over to the Sheldon Fogelman Agency. He worked as the submissions coordinator and permissions manager before becoming a full-time literary agent. Sean graduated from Macalester College with a degree in English-Creative Writing, and is grateful that he no longer has to spend his winters in Minnesota.

He is drawn to flawed, multifaceted characters with devastatingly concise writing in YA, and character-driven work or smartly paced mysteries/adventures in MG. In picture books, he looks more for unforgettable characters, off-beat humor, and especially clever endings. He is not currently interested in issue-driven stories or query letters that pose too many questions.

You can follow Sean on Twitter for his thoughts on publishing news, the inevitable hipsterfication of Astoria, and the Mets' starting lineup.


Frequently Asked Questions


When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.

Get started now!