Beyond the Three Acts

Picture Book Structures and How They Work

Go Beyond the Basics!

In today's crowded picture book market, it's not enough to write a good book and expect to get it published. Editors are looking for fresh, groundbreaking picture books with a unique voice and perspective. One way to elevate your picture book is to consider plot structures that go beyond the basic three-acts.

In this webinar, author and former editor Hannah Barnaby shows you how to identify and consider different plot structures for your picture books. She covers:

  • an introduction of plot shapes in novels
  • how standard plot structure works in picture books
  • a wide variety of plot structures for picture books
  • specific examples of each structure and what they do best
  • how to move your own stories beyond the basics so they stand out from the crowd

Even if, after watching this webinar, you decide the traditional three-act structure is what works best for your manuscript, you will come away with concrete tips for adding depth and dimension to your book(s).

Your Instructor

Hannah Barnaby
Hannah Barnaby

Hannah Barnaby is a former children’s book editor and indie bookseller, and the author of two young adult novels (WONDER SHOW, a 2013 Morris Award Finalist, and SOME OF THE PARTS) and two picture books (BAD GUY and GARCIA & COLETTE GO EXPLORING). The inaugural Children’s Writer-in- Residence at the Boston Public Library, Hannah holds an MA in Children’s Literature from Simmons College and an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College. During her time as an editor at Houghton Mifflin, Hannah worked with award-winning authors and illustrators such as Matthew Cordell, Olivier Dunrea, Pamela Turner, and Vivian Vande Velde, as well as managing one notoriously curious little monkey. She lives, writes, and teaches in Charlottesville, VA.

Course Curriculum

"(Hannah's) webinar inspired me to revise a troublesome manuscript, giving it a new structure... And I’m loving it!

- Carrie Tillotson, Author of Counting To Bananas (Philomel, 2022)

"The Hannah Barnaby webinar about different picture book structures is...a total mic drop on the subject. She verbalized some of my storytelling intuitions that helped me feel validated in using them, and I got more direction on how to make them successful."

- Nell Cross Beckerman, Author of Down Under The Pier

"I just watched the Hannah Rodgers Barnaby webinar on (picture book) structures. Yowzer!!! That was amazing! Every time I watch a 12 x 12 webinar I learn something new and am inspired to improve my manuscripts."

- Deborah Buschman, Author & SCBWI-WI Asst. Regional Advisor

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!