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SCBWI L.A. Conference – Wow!

The Los Angeles SCBWI (Society of Children's Writers and Illustrators) Conference was packed with over 1200 people. Like a conference in any industry, you need to have a plan to tackle getting the information you need. I introduced Melissa Manlove, editor with Chronicle Books, as one of my regional advisor  (RA) duties. She was terrific. Check out Chronicle's site for…

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Doing Queries for Children’s Magazines

At the SCBWI national conference in Los Angeles 4 years ago, I attended a wonderful workshop by SCBWI regional advisor Sue Ford. (She writes under Sue Uhlig. She was RA in Kansas at the time and is now RA in Oregon!) While I'm published in other industries like health care, I did not have published work in children's literature. (And…

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Diving in for a Complete Edit

I have completed 2 chapter book manuscripts. I've been submitting both a bit to agents and editors. Then I rewrite, then a new critique,  then a new rewrite, then I submit. I've received complimentary rejections (which is way above a postcard, or check- the-box-of-no-suitability) and also postcards or crooked copies of "no thanks" form letters or just no response. So…

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Getting Local, Familiar and Out of “Shy-Space”

Even though I have spoken nationwide and consulted with firms around the world, children's writing is a totally different animal. It has taken me awhile to absorb and take to heart the wonderful advice and experiences from other published writers. It's not that I don't believe them, nor didn't understand how to implement their good advice.  I think there was…

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Programs are on A Roll

SCBWI is a wonderful organization of talented volunteers. I am biased. I think our region has among the best. We have some terrific programs starting off the year for writers and illustrators to learn, hone their craft, and get inspired to keep on plugging (as we all know that there is not a lot of money in children's lit unless…

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Getting the Calendar Going for 2013

It's been pretty crazy since our terrific, super crowded conference in October, 2012. I think it took the conference team a month or more to recover. We ended the year with two more fun events in December, one free for members at the lovely, historic Depot Bookstore & Cafe in Mill Valley, and the other event in Walnut Creek featuring…

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