Make sure your story is the best possible version to capture readers' hearts BEFORE you decide to publish it. Schedule a time to have your story reviewed with Brooke Van Sickle here.

Book a Critique Session with Brooke
Journey to Kidlit Logo


Make sure your story is the best possible version to capture readers' hearts BEFORE you decide to publish it. Schedule a time to have your story reviewed with Brooke Van Sickle here.

"Brooke provided an excellent critique. She made concrete suggestions for the parts that needed help and pointed out the parts that were well written. This is my first attempt at writing a picture book and Brooke is the perfect resource for me. I recommend her for both beginning writers as well as more advanced writers."

- Leslie Harris -

Find Confidence Knowing You've Written a Book Worth Publishing.

Imagine how you will feel when you...

  • Know if what you're writing is on the right track instead of hoping it is.
  • Understand your character's goal and motivation for your story instead of hoping you've developed a character that stands out.
  • Have developed a complete story arc that hits all the plot points instead of only having half a story - or not enough to fill the pages.
  • Understand how to properly format your story instead of sharing something that's too confusing to read with a potential editor.
  • Know if your story idea is good enough to compete with books that already exist in the marketplace instead of waiting until after you've submitted your book to find out.

"Working with Brooke was extremely beneficial to my writing and improving my manuscript. She is insightful and not afraid to tell you what needs work. I would highly recommend getting her to critique your work, as she is uplifting and a great mentor."

- Brittany MacBeth -

Get Your Children's Story Reviewed!

For just $97, you can get feedback on your story from an award-winning author and senior editor of a publishing house.

Your story critique includes...

  • A full review of either your full picture book or 1st 10-pages of your longer story text.
  • A 30 minute 1-on-1 Zoom call with Brooke Van Sickle to go over her notes
  • Critique feedback on your title, character, plot, voice, & marketability of your children's story.
  • Action steps to take after the call in order to prepare your story for publishing.
Book a Critique Session with Brooke

"It was so helpful to have Brooke's sweet encouragement, as well as her much-needed wisdom and advice. She was kind and gracious with her feedback—even the difficult feedback—and clearly wants to see me have a successful finished children's book. Her advice was practical, with steps that I could take right away to improve my manuscript. After meeting with her for my book critique, I feel more confident to move forward. Thanks so much, Brooke!"

- Marci Renee-

Brooke Van Sickle Headshot

Hi, I'm Brooke Van Sickle and I want to read your story!

When I first started writing, I didn't know anything about the children's industry. (Let alone how to get my story published!) But once I started receiving feedback on my writing from other experienced writers, I finally learned what it took to write a good children's story.

Now, I'm an award-winning children's book author with accolades such as Mom's Choice & Distinguished Picture Book Favorite from the Independent Press Awards. And I want to help you achieve the same results.

Like the experienced writers who helped me, I want to help you by reviewing your work. When you sign-up for a critique session with me, you'll be getting practical suggestions about how to improve your story from an editor at a publishing house. Which will give you actionable steps to improve your story and get it ready for publishing!

Get your story reviewed by an Award-Winning Children's Book Author:

Royal Dragonfly winner | Brooke Van Sickle
Mom's Choice Award Brooke Van Sickle
Moonbeam Award Winner Brooke Van Sickle
Purple Dragonfly Award Winner Brooke Van Sickle
Reader's Favorite Review | Brooke Van Sickle
National Indie Excellence Award Journey to Kidlit Self Publishing Masterclass

"Brooke was very insightful, helpful and encouraging. I definitely felt validated in my book writing attempt, and have been encouraged to keep pursuing getting it published. Brooke was also very willing to answer all of my questions and really walked me through a lot of things. She is absolutely delightful and the kind of person you would want as a friend. Love her!"

- Joanna Dean -

Choose the time that works for you!

"Talking to Brooke was like talking to a caring friend. I felt like she was holding my hand through the process. She was so helpful in guiding me through what I needed to do to improve my story. I was flying high for the rest of the day. Thank you Brooke!"

- Vera Yardley -

Frequently Asked Questions

What is included in the critique session?

Each critique session includes a full-review of either your complete picture book manuscript or 1st 10-pages of your longer text. Along with the review, you'll also receive a 30min 1-on-1 Zoom call with Brooke and critique notes to help you improve your story.  

What all does this cover?

A critique will be of either a full picture book manuscript or the first 10-pgs of a novel. During our session, we'll look at:

  • The positives aspects of your story as a whole
  • How well developed your character is and what you can do to make them stronger
  • Your plot outline as a whole to see if you're missing any components and if you have enough of a hook to wow an agent, editor, or reader.
  • The most important things you need to do right away to edit your book to get it ready to publish
  • Plus, how marketable your idea is and possible comps to look at for comparison purposes.

Will this be confidential?

Yes! Like with all critiques, your story will not be shared or sent to anyone else. It will just be for you and Brooke to discuss ways you can improve your story to make it the best possible version before you decide to publish it.  

How soon can I schedule a time with you?

Right now! We only ask that you send your story a week before your scheduled critique, in order to give Brooke ample time to review your manuscript and make detailed notes before you meet.  

How do I know whether a critique is for me?

If you have a book that's finished or something you've been starting to pitch to agents/editors, it's time for a critique. By doing this, you'll know if your story's actually ready to submit or if you need to make changes before marking it as complete.  

What if my book isn't ready but I'm stuck?

This is the best time for a critique! You don't have to worry about having a perfectly polished story. (In fact, most of the time you probably won't!) The goal of a critique is to take the vision you have for a story and make it actually happen with your writing.

And don't worry -- I will ALWAYS find positive things to say about your book even if it's not finished or ready to send to an agent or editor.  

Can I have my query critiqued?

Of course! If you think your story is ready for submission, but want to have it reviewed before you hit send, then include your query letter with your story submission. Brooke will review both before your 1-on-1 Zoom call so you will know if you're really ready for publishing. 

What's the investment?

The biggest investment is going to your time. Not only will you spend a half-hour with Brooke, but she'll also give you things to do that will only work if you actually do them. Meaning you have to be ready to return to your story and make the necessary edits to finish your book!

Along with your time, you'll have a one-time payment of only $97 which will cover both the time to review your story and the live one-on-one call you'll have with Brooke via Zoom.   

"I am so pleased to have had the consultation with Brooke! Her direction and recommendations gave me clarity about issues I need to address. She obviously knows the writing and publishing business!"

- Elizabethann Moore -


Let's work to improve your story in an afternoon. That way, you won't just be a writer who writes children's books. You'll be a writer who writes AWESOME children's books that people can't help but talk about!

Get your story reviewed now for just $97. Simply click the button below to schedule a time.


"Brooke's critique is one of several I have done with her. My repeat service with her is because she has guided me to what she calls 'the actual story that wants to be written'. She helps me get out of my own way with word choice, formality, structure, and content. I would highly recommend Brooke. She is approachable with her demeanor and knowledgeable on how to help an individual unfold and tailor their story."

- Erin Murphy -