"What would 10-year-old you want to read that grownup you can make?" With that one stroke, artist Tony Diterlizzi rocketed the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators into an incredible weekend of workshops and speeches. More than 1200 of us came together in LA to learn (and yes, to dance!).
My best guess is that I last attended 10 years ago. That's too long! It was great to come back as an author and to continue to learn. If you're a pre-published writer (as they call it), you can gather your own inspiration from the official blog of the SCBWI conference here.
Here is my favorite advice (culled from twitter!):
"Great writers use anticipation more commonly than surprise." -- Arthur Levine
"Separate the writer from the editor, the editor from the critic, and dump the critic." -- Karen Cushman
"Look to see what might have washed up on the shores of your story." -- Cushman quoting Tim Wynne-Jones
"Don't burn your manuscript; instead, set your heart on fire." -- Ruta Sepetys
"Quiet holds emotions. Make time for ideas to emerge." -- Deborah Underwood
"In a culture that has ceased to cherish its children, you are called to service....to cherish your readers." -- Gary Schmidt
There is nothing better than being in the society of your peers. And the reason I write was reaffirmed: To tell the truth.
Thanksgiving is around the corner, and I bet everyone is telling you to be thankful for something. At my house, we're giving thanks for... pies!
Yes, this is the season when you can make pies with abandon. Chocolate-pecan, Apple-blackberry, cherry-pear, pumpkin whatever!
I'm looking forward to making pies with my daughters. But I'm also thankful for sales representatives. The good folks at Houghton Mifflin are traveling around to bookstores, talking about books and about My Mixed-Up Berry Blue Summer. And I'm grateful, I really am.
Here's what I've been thinking and writing about. I love getting email, too!