Next program begins on September 14, 2022. 6 writers only!
In this 12-week writer coaching program you will work closely with Literary Agent Alyssa Eisner Henkin to create the best version of your young adult or middle grade book, chapter or picture book, or graphic novel script, and move it toward publication!
You will improve your craft and your book with weekly feedback on your writing, enjoy motivation and accountability, and join a fun, supportive community of your fellow writers.
Demystify the Publishing Process and Create Your Best Kidlit Book
Are you an aspiring author who writes for the young adult, middle grade, or children's market? Do you have a story idea that you've begun to write, but can't find the drive to finish? Or, maybe you have finished a first draft but have no idea what to do next?
Are you struggling to harness your inner child, create authentic characters, or pace your book in a way that will engage younger readers?
We've been there. Writing a book is hard enough. When you're writing for the younger set, there's the added challenge of needing to understand the youthful mind to such a degree that they empathize with your story—and would choose it over scrolling through social media.
At the end of this 12-week program, you’ll use the feedback you receive from an expert literary agent and your peers to raise your writing and your book to the next level, and move toward publication.
There is no better motivation for writers than getting instant feedback on your work. In this program, you will share your writing (up to 5,000 words each week) and receive helpful feedback and guidance from literary agent Alyssa Eisner Henkin and other writers in the program.
Consider this program a kind of “One-Stop Shop” for building your kidlit writing career. It will turn you into a better writer, help you craft your query letter, finish your book faster, and create the best, most polished product at the end of the 12 weeks.
How will this program kick-start my writing career?
From our experience helping hundreds of writers with their books (and being writers ourselves), we know that writers improve fastest when they share their writing, get feedback, then incorporate that information into their work.
The best kind of feedback is from an expert in the field—someone who has edited numerous books, and helped publish many authors as a literary agent—someone like Alyssa Eisner Henkin, who will lead this coaching program.
Because this program is limited to 6 writers, each participant will get to share their writing each week and receive critical feedback from an industry expert and your peers, which will help you revise and improve your manuscript.
At the end of the 12-week program, you will have all or part of a book written, and you will be well-positioned to publish, either traditionally or by self-publishing.
Alyssa Eisner Henkin is the owner and Lead Agent at Birch Path Literary. She has a BA in American Literature from the University of Pennsylvania and a background in editing at Simon & Schuster, where she worked for seven years in the Books for Young Readers department.
Afterward, she took a literary agent position at Trident Media Group. Over the next fourteen years at TMG, she championed a list of award-winning and bestselling children’s book creators and rose to the role of Executive Vice President.
In early 2021, Alyssa Eisner Henkin launched Birch Path Literary, where she provides a compass in helping authors and illustrator navigate the intricate, ever-changing, and ultimately verdant publishing landscape.
Books Published by Alyssa's Clients
Alyssa Eisner Henkin has had the pleasure of representing many clients, including:
R.J. Palacio (Wonder, White Bird, Pony)
Julie Berry (All the Truth That's in Me, Lovely War)
Jen Bryant (Six Dots, Above the Rim, A River of Words)
Ruth Behar (Lucky Broken Girl, Letters from Cuba)
Bobbie Pyron (Stay, A Pup Called Trouble, The Dogs of Winter)
Lisa Greenwald (Friendship List Series, Pink & Green Series)
Gail Villanueva (My Fate According to the Butterfly, Sugar and Spite)
In addition to agenting, Alyssa Eisner Henkin became a popular speaker at The Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) conferences throughout the United States and has been a frequent workshop leader at the Writing Barn in Austin, Texas, the publishing master’s program at Rosemont College, and Kelly Writers House at her alma mater, U Penn.
Alyssa Eisner Henkin resides with her family in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.
“The Dabbler”: Writers who have some chapters written.
“The Finisher”: Writers who have a completed manuscript.
YA, MG, and kidlit writers who are willing to write & revise up to 20 pages weekly to share for weekly feedback.
Writers who want to accelerate their progress toward publishing in a 12-week, intensive coaching program, under the guidance of an experienced literary agent, and former editor.
Self-published authors who were not happy with the success of their previous book(s).
Who is this program NOT for?
We have designed a program that’s meant to support writers who are at many stages in the writing process, but this is not for everyone. The format and approach will likely not suit the following writers:
Writers with a completed manuscript who are unwilling to make potentially major changes to their book.
Writers with a polished manuscript who are primarily interested in learning how to land a publishing deal.
Traditionally published authors who are already familiar with writing process challenges including finishing multiple drafts, seeking peer feedback, working with an editor, querying an agent, and landing a book deal.
Writers who are unwilling to write and submit new work weekly.
Writers who are NOT writing for the YA, MG, or children's markets.
Results You Can Count On
Picture holding the first printed copy of your book in your hands. Picture seeing it on store shelves around the world. Picture pulling it up on Amazon and seeing hundreds of five-star reviews.
This 12-week intensive mentorship will help you crack your writer's block, boost your self-confidence, and give you the expert feedback you need to there.
This program is led by Alyssa Eisner Henkin, a literary agent with more than 23 years of experience in the publishing industry. She knows great writing, but also what publishers—and readers—are seeking.
In this program you will go from confused about character development, voice, and pacing to clear on how to write authentically for youth and hold their attention...
From overwhelmed by the publishing process to clear on the exact steps needed to get to bookstore shelves...
From writing inconsistently to producing 10 or 20 quality pages per week...
From unsure if your writing is any good to confident that readers, agents, and publishers will compete to get your book...
From writing alone in a vacuum, to writing in a supportive, enlightening, motivating, and fun community with talented peers and curated resources, under the guidance of an experienced industry insider and a team of experts.
Weekly:Slack check-ins from Literary Agent Alyssa Eisner Henkin, who will provide feedback on your writing and guidance on your project.
Most Weeks:2-hour, live group video chat sessions with Alyssa Eisner Henkin and your peers.
Program Schedule, September-December 2022
(Dates subject to change.)
September 14: Introductory video chat and first sharing and feedback session
September 21: Video session
September 28: Slack session
October 5: Writing catch-up week
October 12: Video session
October 19: Slack session
October 26: Video session
November 2: Slack session
November 9: Video session
November 16: Writing catch-up week
November 23: Slack session
November 30: Video session
December 7: Slack session
December 14: Video session
In this program you will receive weekly feedback that will help you improve your writing, find accountability and motivation, and join a fun, supportive community so that you can produce your best book and get published faster—all under the guidance of an established literary agent.
The cost for 12 sessions and ongoing engagement via Slack is USD$1,495USD $1,795.
What Writers Are Saying About Alyssa Eisner Henkin
"Alyssa has been a super-agent to me since the start of my career. Her editorial insights, her business acumen, her deal-making abilities, and her pulse on the industry are spot-on. She's been a champion, an advocate, and a true partner in growing my creative career. I can't recommend her highly enough."
– Julie Berry, Printz Honor Award, and New York Times Bestselling author
"Alyssa knows how to access the essence of a story, helping to flesh out character, setting, dialogue and plot to make it the absolute best it can be. Her critiques are constructive and insightful, and it is truly a joy to work with her, and benefit from her infinite wisdom!"
– Lisa Greenwald, author of 11 BEFORE 12 (Harper Collins) and two dozen other celebrated books for kids and tweens
"My career definitely blossomed after I signed on with Alyssa and I value very highly the working partnership that we have. Alyssa’s experience as an editor prior to becoming a literary agent is invaluable as it allows her a much broader understanding of the creative process. She knows and respects the fact that every writer works a bit differently and she honors that individuality. The wide range of projects she has represented speaks to the depth of her passion for good literature in all its many forms."
- Jen Bryant, Caldecott-Honor, Schneider Award, and Seibert-Honor-award winning author
Our Guarantee, and Refunds
We stand by our services with a 100% satisfaction guarantee if you are unhappy with the program. We also realize that life happens. If you are happy but still need to withdraw from the program early, here are our refund policies:
• 50% refund before session 4
• No refunds after session 4
Final decisions about refunds are at the discretion of So You Want to Write? Inc.