Take the guesswork out of picture book writing


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For years I banged my head against the wall trying to break into the world of publishing. 


After many years of learning the ropes and publishing 7 picture books with an 8th on the way, I truly know my stuff! I take people on a simple, step-by-step journey that leads directly to a finished picture book manuscript.

I started my business to help writers navigate the confusing world of picture book writing and publishing. If you think you can slap a rhyme together and call yourself the next Dr. Seuss, you REALLY need my help.

My passion is to help up-and-coming children’s book authors learn what it takes to write a picture book.


I am the author of seven picture books published by Penguin Random House and Groundwood Books, House of Anansi Press. My eighth book, The Feeder, is slated for release in Fall 2024 by Fitzhenry & Whiteside. My work has been translated into Danish, Chinese, Korean, Japanese and French. One of my books, Seamus’s Short Story, was on a list of “books to look out for” in Publishers Weekly, and Noni is Nervous was an Editors’ Choice selection in the Book Review section of the Sunday New York Times.

My previous publications include Nana’s Getting Married, Here Comes Hortense (a Blue Spruce and a Shining Willow award nominee), Nana’s Summer Surprise – a trilogy published by Penguin Random House in February 2010, April 2012 and April 2013, respectively. Noni Says No (a Blue Spruce Award nominee), Noni is Nervous, and Noni Speaks Up, also published by Penguin Random House and released in February 2011, July 2013 and February 2016, respectively. Seamus’s Short Story was published by Groundwood Books in August 2017.

Born in Montreal, I graduated from Brandeis University and attended La Sorbonne. I began my career as a copywriter for BCP, an advertising agency in Montreal, Canada. I moved on to become a reporter and Assistant International Editor at The Hollywood Reporter in Los Angeles, Editor-In-Chief of International News for TV Guide/TV HEBDO in French Canada, where I was a columnist for the popular “Heather Hartt in Hollywood,” and host of E! Entertainment Television’s The Gossip Show. This was followed by a three-year stint as host of TV GUIDE TELEVISION, during which time I also contributed to several leading series, including INSIDE EDITION, EXTRA, HARD COPY, CANADA AM and appearances on CNN.

In my career as a broadcast journalist, I interviewed legends such as Walter Matthau, Jack Lemmon, Glen Close, Bette Midler, Nicholas Cage, and Jim Carrey. 

Heather Hartt-Sussman white linen shirt by wooden stairs
Stack of Heather's published books

I want to share my knowledge with you.


My life’s work can be yours in 12 easy-to-follow modules, or even fewer sessions if we are working one-on-one.


Picture book writing is its own ecosystem. Some specific rules and norms are essential to know. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes it’s fun to break the rules, but you have to know them first to break them properly.

I can tell you what you need to know every step of the way so that your manuscript has the polished feel of something you’d be proud to put your name on. More importantly, with my help, you can avoid wasting time using a more trial-and-error approach.

Take the guesswork out of picture book writing and join me.

Reach out to book a free discovery call now →

“Heather guided me through the entire publishing process from start to finish.

One of Heather’s strengths is her ability to quickly identify the strengths and weaknesses of a manuscript. She gave me valuable feedback on my story, helping me to improve the plot, characters, and dialogue. Heather also helped me to craft a strong synopsis and book proposal, which hopefully get my book noticed by publishers.

I am so grateful for Heather’s help, she is a true professional, and I would highly recommend her to anyone who is looking to write a children's book.”

- Kavi

There are 3 ways I can help you on your picture book journey:


Private Coaching

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Self-Paced Digital Course

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Writers' Group

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Learn the 10 key tips to help write your 1st picture book

Jot down your name and email address to download the 10 tips.