Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Zoom Event – First Pages with Agent Joyce Sweeney

Date(s) - 09/12/2021
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm


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Please join us on ZOOM with Joyce Sweeney of the Seymour Agency for a First Pages Critique.

Note that we will endeavor to read everyone’s, but it is not guaranteed that your page will be read. This is a chance to hear an editor’s reaction to an opening, as if it landed on her desk. It is an educational session, and we learn from each critique, even if it is not our own.

Please send a copy of the First Page of your manuscript – double-spaced, one-inch margined, 12 point Times Roman to:

with the subject line:  Your Name – September 12 First Pages

Submissions most be received by September 5th

Please, no portfolios, illustrations or picture book dummies.


Joyce Sweeney has worn a lot of hats. She is the author of fourteen novels for young adults, and two chapbooks of poetry. She created and managed a local theater company in South Florida for ten years, mentoring local playwrights, producing and directing their plays. For the past twenty-five years, she has taught creative writing, both in person and online, and has mentored over sixty of her students to traditional publishing contracts. She has edited countless manuscripts and will be the quintessential ‘editorial agent’. Most of all, she is a champion for writers and this new role is a great chance to take that to a higher level. What she’s looking for: In Picture Books: Fiction or non-fiction. I am drawn to lyrical voices, fun syntax and offbeat concepts. I like unusual characters, and plots that make me cry or laugh out loud. Illustrator/authors welcome and rhyme (if you REALLY know how to do it) is fine. Diversity, please. Most of all, be unique. No graphic novels please. In Middle Grade: I am especially drawn to humor, fantasy and sci-fi, but a realistic novel that makes me cry will work too. Advocate of books for boys. Would love to see more LGBTQ as well.