There are still a few spaces left for Ottawa’s SCBWI Art of Story Conference scheduled for the end of the month. For two days, guest speakers will offer workshops and presentations to everyone interested in writing or illustrating children’s books, from aspiring picture book illustrators to established YA novelists. There’s something for every level of experience.
SCBWI members get a price discount, but you don’t have to be a member to attend. You don’t even have to know that SCBWI stands for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, an international organization with 22,000 members in 70 regional chapters. All you have to know is that very talented writers, illustrators, editors, agents and art directors will gather in Ottawa at the end of April to talk shop–and you can take part.
If you’ve never been to a writing conference, this might be a good one to try because this year’s conference faculty includes:
✓ Alex Arnold, Associate Editor, Katherine Tegen Books, Harper Collins
✓ Jennie Dunham, agent, Dunham Literary
✓ Grace Kendall, editor, Farrar Strauss Giroux
✓ Whitney Leader-Picone, art director, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Books for Young Readers
✓ Christian Trimmer, senior editor, Simon and Schuster
✓ Helaine Becker, author
✓ Tim Wynne-Jones, author
✓ Ruth Ohi, author and illustrator
There are pre-conference feedback opportunities for both writers and illustrators to polish their work in advance of showing it off at the conference itself. It’s too late to sign up for a one-on-one manuscript critique, but it’s not too late to send in a book pitch or first page for critique at the panel session. So get on that. Check out the Conference Details for more info.
Some wonderful conference prep tips were created by the Maryland USA “Team SCBWI” in advance of their own local spring conference. The details are NOT for Ottawa’s Art of Story — don’t follow the directions to Maryland if you’ve signed up for Ottawa — but the general tips and links are useful for anyone heading to their first writing conference. Plus they made this fun meme: