Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Rottnest Retreat 2021 – Critiques

Each of the HOMEGROWN authors and illustrators listed below have very kindly agreed to take on THREE one-on-one manuscript critiques and/or portfolio reviews. When booking a critique, please take note of what they will be critiquing and book accordingly.

James Foley: Picture book manuscripts & illustration portfolios

Cindy Lane: Illustration portfolios

Frané Lessac: Nonfiction picture book manuscripts and illustration portfolios

Meg McKinlay: Picture book, middle grade and YA manuscripts

Kylie Howarth: Picture book manuscripts & illustration portfolios

Briony Stewart: Picture book, junior fiction manuscripts & illustration portfolios

Mark Greenwood: Narrative nonfiction picture book and historical fiction manuscripts

Kelly Canby: Illustration portfolios

Aśka: Comics and graphic novels

Critique Schedule

Critique sessions are 30 minutes long and will take place on Thursday 24 June between 1pm and 3:30pm; and Friday 25 June between 10am and 11:30am (James Foley’s critiques will only be held on the Thursday).

All sessions will be held in Dome Café.

Note: Critiques and portfolio reviews are only available to those attending the Rottnest Retreat.


One-on-One Critique: $75 per 30-minute session (plus $2.50 booking fee).

How to Book

Registrations for critiques open at 7:00 pm SHARP, Monday 15 March.

Click the button below to book a critique through TryBooking.



Once your place is confirmed, you will be contacted by Teena Raffa-Mulligan, who will provide detailed instructions for submitting your work.

These critiques are very popular and demand may exceed supply.

Slots will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis. If you are unable to secure a critique, you can opt to be put on a waitlist in case of a cancellation.

All communication is to go via Teena and/or SCBWI Australia West. Please don’t make direct contact with our critiquers.

What to Send

To participate in a critique, you need to send your material in advance. Please do not send any material until your place is confirmed and you have received your instructions from Teena. Material must be submitted by the deadline advised. No late materials can be accepted.


You will be required to submit the following in advance: up to 10 double-spaced pages from one story only (e.g. if sending a picture book MS for critique, you may send only one, even if it is only a couple of pages long) plus a 1-page synopsis including brief author bio details (e.g. 1/3 page bio + 2/3 page synopsis), making 11 pages in total.

You may use your time to discuss this story and/or ask general questions.


Illustrators have a choice of focus in their critique: they can request feedback on their portfolio OR a work-in-progress.

A portfolio review provides feedback on 10 illustration samples you submit.

A work-in-progress review provides feedback on an uncontracted, unpublished illustration project (e.g. a picture book, a comic book, an illustrated chapter book).

For a portfolio review:

Submit in advance:

•   Your name, 100-word bio, your website address (if applicable) and contact details.

•   Digital copy of portfolio containing up to 10 sample illustrations.

Bring with you on the day:

•   Hard copy of portfolio. Portfolios must consist of a standard A3 folder containing no more than
    10 pages of sample illustrations. Please do not include original artwork – prints only. Sample
    illustrations must be participants' own artwork.

For a work-in-progress review:

Submit in advance:

•   Your name, 100-word bio, your website address (if applicable) and contact details.

•   Your rough illustrations as a storyboard and/or a dummy book (pdf format)

•   between one and three finished illustrations from your project (pdf format)

Bring with you on the day:

•   hard copies of your storyboard and/or dummy

•   hard copies of your 1-3 finished illustrations (prints only, no originals)


Deadline for Submission of Materials: 30 April, 7:00 pm

Cancellation Policy

Cancellations made up to 28 days prior to the event will receive a 75% refund. Cancellations made after this date will not receive a refund.

Anti-Harassment Policy

SCBWI is dedicated to providing a harassment-free experience in its events and activities. Please review the official SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy before booking.

Acknowledgement of Country

SCBWI Australia West recognises the cultural significance and sad history that Wadjemup (Rottnest Island) holds for Aboriginal people and acknowledges the Whadjuk Noongar people as Wadjemup’s traditional custodians.


For more information about this event, please email Critique Coordinator Teena Raffa-Mulligan.