Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Webinar: Creating Multilayered Characters in a Compact Space with Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen

Date(s) - 06/15/2021
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm


Improve Your Craft From Home with this Webinar!


Like an Onion: Creating Multilayered Characters in a Compact Space

with author Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen

Webinar: June 15, 7pm to 8:30pm Central time

Scroll down for Registration, Recording and Login Information

Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen

Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen

Memorable picture book characters are as intricate as their novel counterparts—but the author only has about 500 words to create facets and complexity (and don’t forget plot!). This workshop focuses on techniques to create strong picture book characters that intrigue and captivate while balancing story length and art concerns.

This workshop will cover 8 techniques to maximize impact while minimizing word count:
1. Pairing plot to theme by marrying action to meaning
2. Creating context to magnify the changes in emotion
3. Using relationships to reveal character
4. Creating a Functional Flaw to increase a character’s appeal to the reader
5. Mastering the art of the Art Note
6. Removing layers that detract from the text (like stage directions, excessive dialogue, etc)
7. Avoiding the passive voice
8. Revising away from “thought words”

Learning Outcomes
1. The participants will learn strategies to create characters that are multifaceted.
2. The participants will learn how to decide what to keep and what to cut.
3. The participants will receive a checklist of concrete things to address in their revision.

Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen is an award-winning children’s book author whose books include Chicks Rock, Chicks Rule, The United States vs. Jackie Robinson (2019 ALSC Notable Children’s Books List), Duck Duck Moose (CBC Children’s Choice Award Finalist), Tyrannosaurus Wrecks (Junior Library Guild Selection), and the Purrmaids chapter book series. She has visited schools and libraries for the past 15 years, talking to kids about writing, reading, and finding their voices. She lives in Princeton, NJ with her husband, three children, and an adorable pug named Roxie. You can learn more about her and her books on her website


This webinar will be recorded, but you MUST register BEFORE the webinar to view the recording. Registered attendees will be able to view the recording for 1 month after the webinar date.


Registration will begin on April 12! The webinar costs $10 for SCBWI members, and $55 for non-members. SCBWI members, login to get the discounted price. If you aren’t a member, click here for more information on the many benefits of being part of our community. To join before you register, click the JOIN button in the top right corner of this website.

To register, fill out the form at the bottom of this page. You must accept SCBWI’s Anti-Harassment Policy.

Austin SCBWI members, use the coupon code you were sent in a member email to get this webinar for free.


Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen is doing a limited number of picture book critiques. A critique is NOT included in the webinar. Each critique costs $50 and you will receive written notes. To get a critique with Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen, select that option in the registration form below.

Critique pages must be submitted the week of June 28-July 2, giving you time to watch the webinar, use the information to revise your manuscript, then submit your pages for feedback. You will receive written notes within two months from submission. For submission guidelines, click here.


Login information for the webinar will be emailed to registered attendees AFTER 3PM on the DAY OF THE WEBINAR.