Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators


2021-2022 Mentorship Timeline
Oct 11 – Nov 9:  Application submissions (by email only)

Nov 15-25: Notification Window

Dec 4: Send full manuscript to mentor

Jan 1: Full Payment due

Jan 15 – May 31: Mentorship period

DATE TBD — In prior years was last Sunday in April*: Celebration for mentees and mentors (depends on pandemic situation)

*if last Sunday falls on Easter, the dinner will be the

See the MICHELLE BEGLEY MENTOR PROGRAM menu at the top of the right sidebar menu for access to more information!

The Rocky Mountain Chapter of SCBWI wants its membership to succeed and it was in that spirit that Michelle Begley spearheaded the effort to create and coordinate a local mentoring program. The program was named in Michelle’s honor after she passed away in 2015 and true to Michelle’s vision, it continues to inspire and elevate participating writers and illustrators.

The Mentor Program is designed for unpublished writers or illustrators who have put in time on their craft and feel their work is close-to-ready for submission to agents and editors. Maybe with the help of your critique group you’ve taken a project as far as you know how and would like some one-on-one attention. Maybe you’ve already received personalized rejections on submissions and aren’t sure how to get to the next level. Or perhaps you’ve received editorial feedback you’re struggling to interpret. If any of this sounds familiar the Mentor Program may be for you.

Our participating mentors are as generous as they are talented. They want to help you find success in the exciting and sometimes crazy world of writing and illustrating for children. They’ve been through the rigors of revision and rejection. They know the frustration of pouring your heart and soul into a project that doesn’t find a publishing home. And in spite of their busy schedules and deadlines, these mentors are offering their time and expertise to help you hone your craft.

The Mentor Program is not a promise you’ll be published. But at a minimum, if you work hard and give the mentorship your best effort, you will learn and your craft will improve.

Still not convinced the program is for you? Go to the upper right side bar and click on Writer Mentors or Illustrator Mentors.

Read their bios to learn about their publishing successes and mentoring processes. Visit their websites for insights into their work and personalities. We hope you’ll find one or two mentors who are a good fit for you.

RMC-SCBWI Full members (includes self-published, POD, etc), Associate members, and PAL members who are not yet published in the category in which they hope to be mentored (e.g., a PAL author who has published picture books and wants help with a novel). PAL members cannot be published or under contract for the category in which they hope to be mentored.

What to Expect

When you apply to the Mentor Program you will select one or two mentors to whom your work will be submitted. If selected, your mentorship lasts six months (see Mentorship Timeline) beginning with your original submission directly to your mentor after acceptance. During the mentorship you will communicate with your mentor at least once per month via email, phone, Zoom, or in-person as decided by you and your mentor. You will also set goals for the mentorship. The work you do will be informed by mentor feedback and expect to work hard on your portfolio or manuscript(s). Be open to constructive criticism and prepared for intensive critique. Each mentorship is unique — we look forward to seeing what you will accomplish!

NOTE: This is a blind application process and mentors will not know whose work they’re reading. Your name will appear ONLY on your application form, and you will be assigned a number for your work sample, synopsis, and artist statement. Mentors select mentees based on the application, artist statement, and manuscripts or illustrations they have received.

The cost of the program is $530
Mentees who are accepted to the program will be emailed a PayPal invoice in the first week of January 1, 2022, to be paid in full before the start of the program. (You can pay via PayPal, debit, or credit card)
Those looking for financial assistance should visit the Mentor Program Scholarship page for information about an available scholarship and available grants for this year.

Ready to apply?
The online application and checklists for what to send via email are available by clicking here.

Email our Mentor Program Coordinators, Coral Jenrette and Laura Perdew, at