Setting is a powerful tool. When authors describe setting, they often use sensory descriptions and figurative language to bring out the story world. But when illustrators need to translate those descriptions, what do we do? We can’t draw how something smells or feels. Or can we?Continue reading
by Nicole Maggi
Being a writer sometimes ruins me for being a reader. It’s a rare book these days that can supersede my hypercritical mind, so when I find myself so lulled in by a story that my picky brain stops whirring, I know I’m in for a good read.Continue reading
by Ann Rousseau Smith, SCBWI CenCal News Liaison
Kirsten W. Larson, former NASA employee, is the author of numerous nonfiction books and magazine articles for curious kids. Her most recent book is a nonfiction picture book biography. Wood, Wire, Wings: Emma Lilian Todd Invents an Airplane (Calkins Creek, February 2020) explores the failures and successes of self-taught engineer Emma Lilian Todd as she tackles the challenges of designing an airplane in the early 1900s.
Kirsten agreed to take a few moments from her busy schedule promoting her book to answer a few questions on the origins of her riveting new book. Continue reading
Times are strange. Staying inside and shifting to work from home might be new for some, but for those of us used to camping out at our computers for long hours writing and editing on sunny weekends it can feel like an extension of the routine. Both of these realities can be jarring, and sometimes alienating. Especially when it seems like the world is falling apart. Here at Kite Tales we want to let you know: you’re not alone; we’ll get through this; and take some time for healing, whether it be writing or just watching your favorite movie.
In that spirit, we wanted to help provide you with some resources that you can access online. From webinars to virtual meetups, there is a great community of kidlit writers and illustrators sharing thoughts and inspiration.
by Karol Ruth Silverstein, SCBWI-L.A. Contest Coordinator
The SCBWI-L.A. is thrilled to be able to bring good news to some of our members at a time that’s been so difficult for all of us.
Let us begin by expressing a hearty thank you to our anonymous judges for selecting the 2020 honorees. As usual, manuscripts were submitted in four categories: Young Adult, Middle Grade, Picture Book, and Other (which includes poetry and non-fiction). If you’d like to contact any of the winners to request their manuscript or discuss publication, please let us know in the comments below!
This year, the first-place winners in each category will receive a manuscript critique from one of our faculty members plus free tuition to either the rescheduled 2020 Writers Day event or to next year’s Writer’s Day.
Here are the 2020 honorees: Continue reading
by Jennifer Rawlings
I know applying for the Sue Alexander Grant is scary, but ignoring your dreams and goals is even scarier.
Not only did I not tell a single soul I was applying for the Sue Alexander Grant, I wrote an entire novel in secret. That’s right. Not even my husband knew I was writing a YA Novel—I just wanted to do the work then hope and pray someone liked it.
Complete Idiots Guide to Publishing Children's Books, editing, Eileen Robinson, Harold Underdown, Highlights Foundation, Kid's Book Revision, process, publishing, revising, revision grid, The Purple Crayon, WD2020, writing
Harold Underdown is an independent editor and publishing consultant, with over 30 years of experience in children’s publishing. He’s the author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Children’s Book Publishing and has worked as an in-house editor for Macmillan, Orchard, and Charlesbridge. The collegiate atmosphere of publishing is what drew him to editing and developed his passion for helping writers bring out their vision.
He will be sharing his expertise at Writers Day on March 28 and leading a pre-conference revision workshop for those lucky enough to have grabbed a spot. (You can sign up for the waitlist here.) He’s also been generous enough to share some tips with us at Kite Tales.
Allison Crotzer Kimmel, Camarillo Public Library, Claire Noland, County Mingle, critique groups, Lori Anaya, Mari Talkin, meetups, networking, pitches, Rebecca Langston George, Russo's Books, The Sandbox, workshops
by Ann Rousseau Smith, SCBWI CenCal News Liaison
The SCBWI Central-Coastal region offers regular, free meet-ups, known as LitMingles. All LitMingles are hosted by volunteers. Whether you want to connect with other writers, learn about craft, or build a community of support, your LitMingle hosts are ready to plan for your needs.
Our County Mingles were newly created in 2019, and our current LitMingle hosts are Allison Crotzer Kimmel, Kern County; Claire Noland, San Luis Obispo County; Mari Talkin, Santa Barbara County; and Lori Anaya, Ventura County. I wanted to check-in and see how the meet-ups are progressing.
ANN ROUSSEAU SMITH: Welcome to the Kite Tales blog! What is the purpose or mission of a LitMingle, either in general or more specifically for your County Mingle?
Books Festivals, business, ComicCon, Conventions, Critique Day, Down The Rabbit Hole, LA Comic Con, LitFest, marketing, news, OC Book Fair, PAL events, SCBWI events, Working Writer's Retreat, Writers Day, writing
Need a creative pick me up? How about a new avenue for book promotion? Or maybe you just need some quality time with like-minded writers and illustrators working on their craft. SCBWI has you covered on the craft of kidlit and our region’s list of local book festivals and conventions is sure to broaden your creative perspectives!
SCBWI Sponsored Events for 2020
Skirball Cultural Center, Los Angeles
Dive into craft and “Discover the Words Worth Keeping” with a full day of keynotes, critiques and agent pitch sessions. A special pre-event intensive with Harold Underdown will also give a new perspective on approaching revision to polish your work in progress. Contests, manuscript reviews and scholarships will also be available. Need more insight? Read author Charlotte Offsay’s recap of last year here.