Stuck at home, staring at the same walls, unable to figure out how get inspired without getting in debt? Here are five things you can do to feed your creativity but don’t require you to open your wallet to do it.
SCBWI members’ publishing news is something to celebrate here at Kite Tales! Check out whose book is coming to a platform near you or around the world. Horn-tooting and digital hi-fives welcome in the comments!
SCBWI Central-Coastal California has set a date for Writers’ Day 2021. Please mark your calendars for Saturday, October 30.
This year’s Writers’ Day will be in two parts. The first will be in-person at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks with spotlight speakers. A featured guest will also speak on this day. The writing contest recipients will be announced and critiques distributed at this half-day event.
The SCBWI-L.A.Virtual Writers Day this year, on June 12-13, was incredibly special indeed. Perhaps because I had waited over a year for it. It was my first opportunity to present with one of the most welcoming and genuine organizations I have ever had the honor to be a part of. I thought after my session: “Definitely worth rescheduling, despite unusual circumstances and constraining parameters. Magical moments showed up for us. In droves.”
Thank you to Nutschell Windsor, Sally Jones Rogan, and all the volunteers and team members for paving the way for a day of productivity and group inspiration and creating such a positive, uplifting place to gather. Events like this and the opportunities therein make the loneliness that creeps up sometimes (okay, maybe a lot, recently) in writing easier to move through. Even though this was different from events in the past, there was again, those magical moments to be gained.
Discussions about diversity in the arts today focus on the importance of diverse characters and diverse creators. As crucial as that is, diversity can and should also include different story forms and themes drawn from diverse traditions. Western storytelling forms are almost entirely based on conflict, tension, and resolution, while themes are almost entirely focused on self-actualization/self-empowerment and a rising self-esteem arc. These are not the only ways to tell a satisfying story. Non-Western storytelling traditions offer radical alternatives.
The notion of what constitutes a satisfying story is heavily influenced by cultural values. To illustrate, let’s play a game. I’m going to use a very traditional Chinese/Taiwanese lens to describe a book that is well-known here in the exotic Occident.
Q. Majestic gold dragon is murdered by band of itinerant thieves.
Christine Van Zandt is a Los Angeles writer, editor, and longtime SCBWI volunteer. She’s a familiar name here on Kite Tales, previously as the Editor and now as a regular contributor. Her debut picture book, A Brief History of Underpants, will be published in June, though that wasn’t the initial plan . . . read on to get the scoop!
FARRHA KHAN: Welcome to Kite Tales!Congratulations on your picture book, A Brief History of Underpants. Why was your publication pushed from April to June?