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What We’ve Learned as Debut Authors #KidLitCon2019 Panel!

What We've Learned as Debut Authors #KidLitCon2019 Panel!

What We’ve Learned as Debut Authors

A panel of debut picture book authors share their first year experiences working with their publishers, handling publicity and events, and everything in between.

Jannie Ho


Will do speed critiques of illustration portfolios.

Jannie Ho received her BFA in illustration at Parsons The New School of Design in New York. After graduating, she worked as an in-house graphic designer at Nickelodeon, Scholastic, and an art director at TIME Magazine for Kids. She left to pursue illustrating full time and haven’t stopped drawing since. Her debut picture book is Bear and Chicken.

Bear and Chicken

Gaia Cornwall


Will do Speed Critiques of manuscripts or illustrations.

Gaia Cornwall loves to write and illustrate for children. Her debut picture book, Jabari Jumps (Candlewick Press), was featured in People MagazineThe New York Times, was named a Charlotte Zolotow Honor Book, an Amazon Best Children’s Book of the Year, and was a 2017 NPR staff pick, among other accolades. Upcoming titles include Jabari Flies and Best Bed For Me, (Candlewick Press), and A Unicorn Came to Dinner…Again written by Lauren DeStefano (Roaring Brook Press). Gaia lives in Providence, RI with her two little kiddos, one programmer husband, and two kitty kiddos. You can see more of her work at

Alison Goldberg


Will do Speed Critiques of manuscripts.

Alison Goldberg is the author of I Love You for Miles and Miles, illustrated by Mike Yamada (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2017) and the forthcoming picture book biography, Bottle Tops: The Art of El Anatsui, illustrated by Elizabeth Zunon (Lee & Low Books, 2020). She blogs about activism in children’s literature at To learn more, visit her website at or on Twitter @alisongoldberg

Gina Perry


Will do Speed Critiques of manuscripts or illustrations.

Gina Perry writes and illustrates books for children from her home in New Hampshire. She graduated from Syracuse University and worked in animation and product development before finding her path in children’s literature. Her books include Small (little bee books, 2017), Too Much! Not Enough! (Tundra, 2018) and the forthcoming Now? Not Yet! (Tundra, May 2019).

Emma Otheguy


Emma Otheguy is the author of the picture books Martí’s Song for Freedom, which received five starred reviews, and, most recently, Pope Francis: Builder of Bridges. Her debut middle-grade novel, Silver Meadows Summer, is coming from Knopf Books for Young Readers on April 30th, 2019. Otheguy lives in New York City.

Moderator: Charnaie Gordon from Here Wee Read


Charnaie Gordon of Here Wee Read blog finds and shares the very best diverse and non-diverse books that she read aloud with her two children.

Charnaie Gordon from Here Wee Read

Join us March 22-23 for KidLitCon 2019!

What We've Learned as Debut Authors #KidLitCon2019 Panel!