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Rob Sanders has become a frequently requested mentor, teacher, and speaker at writing events. From The Writing Barn to The Highlights Foundation to Picture Book Summit to SCBWI events around the country—Rob is front and center offering his signature brand of teaching that involves heart and humor, practical advice and innovative hands-on writing experiences, and observations about the publishing journey that are insightful and inspirational.


Rob is also asked to serve as a mentor for many organizations including We Need Diverse Books, PBChat, and Queerkidlit Mentorships. And he judges writing contests, most recently the fiction and nonfiction categories of the Ann Whitford Paul-Writer's Digest Most Promising Picture Book Manuscript contest.


To book an event with Rob, write to



Testimonials from Some of Rob’s Students and Mentees


“Your session was incredible! I've been working with that waterfall writing exercise for the whole week, and I'm loving it.”

—Julie Hedlund, Student 

Author of: Over, Bear! Under, Where?

Co-founder of 12x12 and Picture Book Summit


“Lucia’s story is a balm for my soul, thrilled I get to share it with all of you! Biggest THANK you to @diversebooks and my awesome mentor, Rob Sanders.” 

—Cynthia Harmony,  We Need Diverse Books mentee

Author of: A Flicker of Hope

“Being a professional writer means being a perpetual student. I took Rob Sanders’ Picture Book Biography I and II through The Writing Barn and both manuscripts I workshopped have gone on to be published.”

—Shannon Hitchcock, Student

Author of: Saving Granddaddy’s Stories: Ray Hicks, the Voice of Appalachia


 “Just want to let you know that I got an offer on the bio I revised in your class last spring. Thank you for being an amazing teacher!!!”

—Sara Ackerman, Student and Author


“Your class was a turning point for me in my writing. You are such a gifted, generous and kind teacher, who really made me see structure, scene, and pacing. When I took your class things finally began to click for me as a writer. Yesterday, Publisher's Weekly announced the publication of my upcoming Picture Book Biography which was first drafted under your guidance.”

—Sara Andrea Fajardo, Student

Author of: Paka Paka con la Papa: Alberto Salas Plays Potato Hide-and-Seek


“I wanted to share with you first that I have officially signed with [an] agent . . .

I cannot thank you enough for the opportunity you have given me.”

—Tom Bober, Student and Author 


“[My book] went out into the world a few weeks ago . . . I got an offer the first day . . . The class and your feedback in particular got the book to a much higher level. Thank you for sharing your expertise and helping me get to the book I wanted to write!"

—Michaela MacColl, Student and Author

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