Monday, January 30, 2012

Exhausted and time at the SCBWI Winter Conference 2012, NY

Wait a minute, exhausted and energized? You're probably wondering if I didn't lose a couple of marbles at the Grand Central station. I assure you, I did not. All seventeen counted and accounted for!

But this is exactly how I feel right now, after four days in New York. Helaine and I landed a day earlier to explore a bit of NY and see the Met. It was fabulous and you can see a few of the pictures in my Facebook album.

The hotel was great, right in the heart of Manhattan. And those boys from my window sure lit up my day in the morning....

Friday was the Writer's Intensive and with much trepidation nine of us sat at a round table to open up our hearts and souls to be critiqued. My group was wonderful and so was the expert on the panel, Jennifer Laughran of Andrea Brown Literary Agency. We all came away a lot better for experience with a lot of honest feedback.
My afternoon session was with Kari Sutherland, Editor at HarperCollins Children's books. Another great session with a very knowledgeable faculty member wgo gave us excellent feedback on how to polish our work even better! I wanted to go back to my room right then, and get started with the polishing but that was when the rest of the Canucks started pouring in. And since the weather was so fabulous, we decided to walk around a bit and get a bite to eat. And that bite of pizza was the best I've ever had.

The above is one of the plaques on the road leading up to the NY Public Library and my favourite.

Saturday started with a hilarious speech from Lin Oliver followed by a powerful and touching keynote from Chris Chrutcher. I was completely blown away by the honesty and humour of his speech. And I was lucky enough to meet him at the Gala in the evening to tell him so.

The keynote which made me want to laugh and cry at the same time (exactly as Chris intended!) was followed by four expert impressions about Children's Books. On the panel were Jean Feiwel (Sr VP and Publishing Director, Feiwel and Friends-MacMillan), Barbara Marcus (Strategic Innovations Adviser), Nancy Paulsen(President and Publisher, Nancy Paulsen Books, Penguin) and Rubin Pfeffer (Agent, East West Literary Agency).

After an informative snapshot of the world of children's book publishing, we were off to our breakout sessions. My first one was with Aimee Friedman, Senior Editor, Scholastic, who is also a NY bestseller author. She spoke about Series Fiction, discussuing the popular ones, how to write and pitch a series to an editior. Lots of good information!

And then it was lunch and there was still a lot more to look forward to. But for that you'll have to wait for the next post. Do come back :) And for more pictures, please visit me on Facebook.

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