Ask an Editor: What is New Adult?



“Ask an Editor” is a forum wherein SCBWI memAskAnEditor_2bers submit questions that are answered as part of our quarterly Kite Tales blog.

Dear Editor – What is New Adult? How is it different from Young Adult?

—J.T., Los Angeles

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Illustrator’s Gallery: Annelouise Mahoney


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By Annelouise Mahoney

4Picture books are like little paper theaters inviting us to take a journey. When we provide a believable sense of space, we invite our readers to step into that world.

Environments are important to me. When I develop a character for a story, I think a lot about where the character lives, what their home looks like, and more importantly, why the character lives there. How does the environment serve the story? Does it set a mood, an atmosphere, a feeling of home, or uncertainty? The answers to these questions lead me to do lots of research to determine the particular elements needed to create a specific environment that suits the story. Continue reading

Writers & Illustrators Day 2017: Lynn Becker, An Illustrator’s Perspective


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WID-ByLynnBecker2Author and SCBWI member Lynn Becker reports on this year’s Writers & Illustrator’s Day.

This year, the Los Angeles Writers & Illustrators Day at the Skirball Cultural Center added a strong illustrator component to the mix. Along with a double dose of illustrator challenges and paid portfolio reviews, there were two breakout sessions specifically geared toward illuminating the intersection of picture book art and text. These presentations offered a chance for writers and illustrators alike to think about picture books as intertwined parts of a medium. Continue reading

Writers & Illustrators Day 2017: PB Rippey, A Writer’s Perspective


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WID3-PBRippeyAuthor and SCBWI member PB Rippey reports on this year’s Writers & Illustrator’s Day.

The Skirball Cultural Center, nestled in the Santa Monica mountains, presides serenely over the 405 freeway’s regular traffic jams, yet is removed from city chaos. Inside, a foyer of vaulted glass, contemporary murals and magical installation lighting exudes a calming aura—one absorbed by the friendly mob checking in to the annual Los Angeles Writers & Illustrators Day on Feb. 25. I sipped complimentary coffee and mingled with chatty strangers, feeling transported from Los Angeles to a rural writer’s retreat. Continue reading

Brian Won: Author/Illustrator Perspective, Writers & Illustrators Day Faculty


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Author/illustrator Brian Won was one of SCBWI’s 2016 Crystal Kite Award recipients and faculty for this year’s Los Angeles Writers & Illustrators Day, where he was a judge for the illustration contests and critiqued illustrator portfolios. He wore many hats–busboy, shoe salesman, library shelver, art director, and designer before making the leap to children’s books. Brian graduated from California’s Art Center College of Design with an honorary ninth term before co-founding National Television, a design and animation company. Read on for his insights and advice to author/illustrators and thoughts on illustrating for others as well as news about his current and upcoming projects!

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SCBWI Community Corner with Maria D. Laso and Dawne Knobbe


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The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators is a dynamic community of professionals and aspirings. Read on for Dawne Knobbe’s story, in memory of her friend Mari Lou, celebrating her publishing success and her life well-lived.

Don’t ever give up your book dreams. In the publishing world, anything is possible. Imagine signing your first contract with Scholastic. Impossible, you think? Here’s how it happened for my friend, Mari Lou. Continue reading

Sue Alexander Grant Contest Opens! Where Are Past Winners Now?


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By Marcelle Greene

awards-and-grantsThe 2017 Sue Alexander Grant contest opens today, offering one SCBWI-L.A. writer free tuition to the Working Writers Retreat. We asked five previous recipients of this prestigious award how winning impacted their writing careers. Continue reading

Pam Gruber: Editor’s Perspective, Writers & Illustrators Day Faculty


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headshot_gruberPam Gruber is a Senior Editor at Little, Brown Books for Young Readers where she has worked on everything from novelty and picture books to novels. She primarily acquires middle grade and young adult fiction and nonfiction. She loves alternate histories, off-beat teen romances, witty voices that can make her laugh and cry simultaneously, and stories of characters being asked to see their world in a different way. She is also on the faculty for this year’s Los Angeles SCBWI Writers and Illustrators Day (Feb. 25th) where she will deliver a keynote and lead a breakout session on immersive world-building. For a great preview and insights from an editor-extraordinaire (and cute cat photos!), read on:

SARAH PARKER-LEE: Your list includes a hybrid graphic-novel series, VIP by Jen CalonitaClaudia Gray’s new space opera, Defy the Stars, and YouTuber Josh Sundquist’s debut novel, Love and First Sight. You certainly don’t dwell in traditional spaces for content or creator! What makes you want to take a risk on non-traditional projects? What’s the difference between non-traditional and straight-up gimmicky? Continue reading

Clelia Gore: Agent’s Perspective, 2017 Writers & Illustrators Day Faculty


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cleliagore Clelia Gore is a lawyer-turned-literary-agent who heads Martin Literary Management’s kid lit division. She represents authors and illustrators in both fiction and nonfiction, from board books to young adult.

As faculty for SCBWI’s upcoming Writers & Illustrator’s Day, she will lead a session titled “The Interplay Between Art and Text in Picture Books.” She also will critique manuscripts and will be an illustration contest judge.

Erlina Vasconcellos: What do you want participants to take away from your breakout session at Writers & Illustrators Day?

Clelia Gore: I get two kinds of picture book queries: author/illustrators and authors only. For people who are authors only, they sometimes need a little help seeing how the art and writing can work together to tell the story. A lot of picture book writers who are early in their careers don’t understand how the two forms of art interplay in telling the story.

For authors who are illustrators, it’s honing in on things to think about when crafting their story…Hopefully people will leave inspired and it will lead to thoughtfully crafted books.

EV: What question are you asked often? Continue reading

Toot Your Horn!


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chicksHatching Chicks in Room 6, by Caroline Arnold, illustrated by Caroline Arnold, Charlesbridge, ages 3-7, Nonfiction, ISBN: 978-1-58089-735-8, released 01/10/17.



The Sundown Kid – A Southwestern Shabbat, by Barbara Bietz, illustrated by John Kanzler, August House, ages 5-8, Picture book, ISBN: 978-1-93-916094-2, released 01/07/17.

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