Catherine Linka, author of the A Girl Called Fearless series, joins this year’s LA SCBWI Working Writer’s Retreat faculty. She is a world traveler, former buyer for an independent book store, and was almost thrown out of boarding school for being “too verbal.” She spoke with me about her work, your work, Wonder Woman, and the kid lit community’s place in the world.
Linka first became involved in SCBWI “forever ago.” It was the first time she’d found people interested in the same kid lit things as her. Later, she added her Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA community and then the debut author community. “Everyone was so generous and warm and inclusive.” That’s why she believes it’s so important to give back. “It costs me nothing but time to help someone else out, really, so why not?”
True to that ideal, Linka is a huge supporter of SCBWI and an active SCBWI mentor and member. She knows every writer needs a supportive community. “It can take years to develop your craft, and you need people to cheer you on, point out opportunities, open doors, celebrate successes and mourn defeats. We really can’t do this alone, and it is so much more fun and satisfying to do it together.”
Linka acknowledges that writers who are often introverted, herself included, may feel overwhelmed in social situations, even when taking advantage of SCBWI’s group activities and professional development opportunities. This can also make it harder when we eventually have to do our own marketing. Her biggest advice: Continue reading