Hello! I’m Simone.

Simone Kaplan

I’m a picture book editor, coach, and consultant on a mission to help authors get their manuscript out of their head, onto the page, and into the world.

When it comes to my work, I have three simple beliefs:

  1. Writing a picture book is worth doing, and it's worth doing well.
  2. Writing a picture book is both harder and easier than you might think.
  3. There is a reliable, replicable, and enjoyable process for the creation of any picture book.

I fell in love with children’s books when, as a magazine editor, I attended South Africa's first children's literature conference. Years later, after moving to New York, I learned the craft of developmental editing at Henry Holt + Company and Harper Collins, and refined it by working with hundreds of authors around the world. When health issues forced me to leave mainstream publishing, the authors I loved and loved working with continued to call on me for editorial advice. It was because of their requests that I knew it was time for my own editorial consultancy, Picture Book People, to begin.

Today, I work with writers to find, develop and polish the best manuscript of which they are capable.

Whether it’s through 1-on-1 consulting, teaching, or workshops, I take a hands-on, interactive approach.

My clients applaud my deep understanding of manuscripts, my ability to energize the creative and playful side of writing, and my knack for helping them find what it is they’re really trying to say. It’s the spirit and struggles of my hard-working clients that brings out my best. The collaborative interplay of minds makes my work rewarding, and I take no greater pride than getting you, the author, to the point where everything feels just right.

When I'm not diving deep into manuscripts or spending (increasingly rare) moments with my teenage son, it's likely you'll find me curled up with a good book, a cup of tea, and a piece of chocolate (or two).

I believe picture books play an important role. The stories they contain create life-expanding experiences for children, influencing the way they see the world. It is our responsibility -- to both our readers and ourselves -- to create the best work of which we’re capable.

Authors: you can do this. I can help.

Together, we can make your manuscript both marvelous and marketable.

Get started by: