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The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Conference

Tuesday, January 18, 2011 @ 08:01 PM Karen Jean Matsko Hood

Good morning. Today is January 18, 2011, and I am busy planning for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators conference. This conference takes place in New York City later this month, which I will be attending.

The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) was founded 1971 by a group of Los Angeles-based children’s writers. It is an international organization based in Los Angeles, California, representing professionals in the field of children’s literature. It is the world’s largest children’s writing organization and the only international organization for people who write, illustrate, or have a professional interest in children’s literature. There are currently more than 22,000 members worldwide, in over 70 regional chapters, writing and illustrating in all genres for young readers from board books to young adult (YA) novels. The SCBWI facilitates communication between writers, illustrators, editors, publishers, agents, librarians, educators, booksellers, and others involved in the field.

Membership in this society provides many benefits for writers, including information and support, access to awards and grants, networking, local workshops and get-togethers, inside publications, online resources, manuscript and illustration exchange, member discounts, and more.

The SCBWI sponsors two annual conferences, on the west and east coasts of the United States, usually in Los Angeles and New York City, as well as many regional conferences and events throughout the world. It publishes a bi-monthly newsletter, has an interactive website, and gives out a number of awards and grants. Among these are the annual Golden Kite Award for the best fiction and nonfiction books and the Sid Fleischman Humor Award.

At this year’s winter conference there will be a panel discussion on Creating and Recreating the Picture Book: Three Views. There are also three workshops about What Makes Your Work Publishable: Today’s Market in Children’s Books.

I am looking forward to all the other authors I will meet at this conference, as well as all I will learn from the speakers and workshops.

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