Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

  • Join us April 7th for Spring Spirit 2018
  • Critique Group Information


Take a look at the map of our region. It is vast, extending from the Oregon border southward to Kings, Tulare and Inyo counties. Endless inspiration abounds from such majestic sites as Yosemite, the Eastern Sierra, South Lake Tahoe, the Mendocino coast, Lassen and Mt. Shasta, not to mention the

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R.A. CORNER  News & Regional Updates: Dec 2017
1. News Flash--"Polishing Your Picture Book" Workshop with Chronicle Books Jan 6th
ICYMI, we have a special workshop with Ariel Richardson, a super editor from Chronicle Books. We announced the event on Facebook and within a day all the manuscript crits sold out--before we could even email out the news about the workshop! We've ONLY GOT FIVE SEATS LEFT, so if you want to hear how to make board book and picture book manuscripts shiny and ready for submission (or for Spring Spirit), and learn the most common feedback Ariel gives when she critiques manuscripts at SCBWI conferences—such as the importance of the title for conveying hook, word count, illustration notes, leaving room for illustrations, mentor texts, the importance of backmatter, and morebook your registration now! Only $35!! 
2. 2017 Showcase and Holiday Mixer Recap 
We had a great turnout for our first Showcase. Feedback was overwhelming on the venue, and it looks like we might do the same thing again next year as far as author displays and raffles (so fun!). Don't forget to check out member books (27 authors with well over 35 books released this year alone!)
3. Spring Spirit Registration Open, with Early Bird Specials! From Volunteer ARA Nikki Shannon Smith 
You know registration opened for our big 2018 Spring Spirit conference, right? Well we've got some great Early Bird specials (as if 2 editors, 2 agents, 1 art director, 4 authors, a photographer for headshots AND MARK TEAGUE wasn't enough...all for the same low price as last year)!!! Get in with Early Bird pricing to save yerself thirty bucks AND get entered to win one of THREE free career consults with the amazing agent Jennifer March Soloway from the renowned Andrea Brown Agency. Wow, right? Get moving as at least three critiquers have already maxed out! Don't get left in the lurch (what a weird phrase). 
4. IC Update From Volunteer Illustrator Coordinator Angelica R Jackson:
The Traveling Sketchbooks have started their rounds to the illustrator and author/illustrator members who've signed up. Yes, that's "sketchbooks" with an S! To maximize how many people can participate before the 2018 Spring Spirit conference (where it will be displayed), we have two sketchbooks for contributions. Kristen Schwartz and Elizabeth Stevens Omlor have done a fantastic job setting this up and we're all looking forward to getting to know our regional members from their creative works. Check our regional Facebook page for ongoing visual updates.
5. Critique Group Update from volunteer JEN Garrett:
A Big Thank You to all the PAL members and attendees to Critique Carousels in 2017! Also, thank you to those who have taken the short survey we created to evaluate this year, as we transition the Critique Carousel program into a self-run quarterly format in 2018, starting in January. Your voice has been heard! (It's not too late to give your input, if you haven't yet taken the survey. 2017 Critique Carousel attendees only, please.)    
6. Social Media Update from Volunteer Linda Joy Singleton:
Our FB page has been gaining about 10 new members a month; we currently have over 850 followers. Our post engagement has gone up 10%. Also this year we had our first live chat with an editor--a fun, informative event. Want more events like that? Let us know!
On Twitter, we're gaining followers, too. We are closer than ever to 2,000 followers! Twitter is a great place to find out what's happening with SCBWI, authors, editors and agents. Agents are often looking for new clients and have pitching opportunities. Just do a search for the word "pitch" + "agent" or other writerly words and starting searching for opportunities. #MSWL + your topic or genre is a great one too (MSWL= manuscript wishlist). Try searching for book titles and favorite authors, to check out the latest news. 
Sign up/follow us now, to stay on top of all the latest news, and check in often! (You don't want to be the last to know of things like the Chronicle editor crits.) We tend to use our FB page like a bulletin board of upcoming and recent news. Twitter tells us what's happening NOW.
7. Misc Updates:
South area volunteer Suzi Guina hopes to have a workshop on craft and a few informal Munch & Mingle type gatherings throughout the year. Stay tuned!
Redding/Chico area folks, we haven't forgotten about you! It's a matter of (wo)manpower. We're hoping to get at least a few Munch & Mingles up your way in 2018 too. Stay tuned.
You may recall our newsletter/blog, ACORN, came to a close this year and is no longer actively updated. But there's still a ton of content accessible and relevant, such as agent and editor interviews, How To articles, grammar help, and more! A hearty shout-out to everyone that made ACORN successful over the years! Thank you, volunteers.
Be sure to check out the Showcase of our members' 2017 books: We plan to keep the Showcase rolling throughout the year, and will update the Showcase next Dec with all 2018 titles. Keep in touch whenever you have a new release!
We've worked hard to make your 2017 a fruitful one. We hope you've appreciated our volunteer efforts! 
Here's to 2018 being even more fruitful.
RA Bitsy, ARA Nikki, IC Angelica