Wednesday, February 3, 2021

What's the Scoop: A Winning Webinar with Whale Rock Workshops

A Review by Lynne Marie

I recently attended my very first Whale Rock Workshop! Sadly, I had been able to make these when they were in-person events. But now that they have moved to an on-line format, I was thrilled to be able to grab a spot! 

This workshop was the first online event -- What's Going On - The State of the Union of Children's Publishing with Vice-President and Co-Publisher Phoebe Yeh of Crown Books and Maria Modugno, Executive Editorial Director of Random House Studio/Random House Children's Books (January 12). 

The registration was capped at 18 so it became a small gathering of 21 including Shari, Phoebe Yeh and Maria Modugno. 

This was perfect as it had an intimate, privileged feel to it (I was so thankful to be one of the 18) and it allowed for all of our questions to be answered at the end. 

The format was very casual, yet informative, where Phoebe and Maria discussed their visions, their passions, what they were looking for in manuscripts, and told stories about acquisitions. To be honest, I got so much more take-away from this than any conference speech or break-out session, likely because of the freedom of format and the intimacy. 

They answered many important questions about publishing in view of the pandemic, which were extremely candid, yet encouraging. I was very interested to hear all they had to say on this timely topic. I think opportunities like this are priceless!

Even though there wasn't a submission opportunity attached to this, the Editors kindly offered to take a submission from each of us on the class list! I thought this session was entirely worthwhile before that, and you can imagine how the value increased after that! 

Of course, I was so thrilled! I tried to sign up for another in January, but it was SOLD OUT. However, I did grab a spot for this one!

Their Lens on the World: Seeing, Speaking, Hearing Through Character

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 10, 2021 7:00 - 8:30 PM EST


Compelling characters have very specific points of view. Learn how to tap into the way your characters experience and see the world so that you can convey each unique voice in your writing. Through exercises and discussion, we will look at how we as writers can understand our characters, their motivations, and their voices. 18 students maximum

I'll be honest. I am seriously thinking of attended the one on Prince Edwards Island in the Fall. 

If you wish to join me in the Fall or online, you can register here:

Whale Rock Workshops is owned and run by Shari Becker. 

Shari Becker was born in Montreal, Quebec, and grew up speaking both English and French. As a child, she spent her summers in the Adirondack Mountains catching fireflies, minnows, and toads. After completing a master’s degree at New York University, Becker worked for Nickelodeon, Disney-owned companies, and an Emmy Award–winning puppeteer. She is the author of two picture books, including the Charlotte Zolotow Award–honored and Junior Library Guild–selected Maxwell’s Mountain. She most recently published Sprouting Wings with Louisa Jagger, illustrated by Floyd Cooper. She now lives in Brookline, Massachusetts, with her husband, two daughters, and their dog. 


  1. How exciting! Wish I could have been a fly on the wall.

  2. I know, right? It was wonderful. Of course it filled up quickly! Hope to see you at another one!