Sometimes doing a good thing, even a very good thing, is not necessarily the best thing for us. It’s hard to know when boundaries need to be placed, when risks need to be taken, when the unknown is better for us than the relative safety of routine. It’s hard to change. But as writers and illustrators, we must be protective of our time, our creative mental space, and recognize when a good thing, even a very good thing, could be getting in the way. Continue reading
By Karol Ruth Silverstein, SCBWI-L.A. Contest Coordinator
SCBWI-L.A. PAL member Bethany Barton is the 2019 Mentor! This year’s mentorship contest is for illustrators and author/illustrators and we’ll be accepting applications from February 15 through March 22.
To encourage applicants, we thought we’d check in with last year’s mentees, Monica Mancillas and Jennifer Fitzgerald, to see how their mentorship experience went.
KAROL RUTH SILVERSTEIN: What did you hope to get out of the mentorship when you first applied?
JENNIFER FITZGERALD: I am just starting out writing for children, so initially I was looking for guidance in getting started. My biggest issue is time management. I’m a business owner and a parent, which means time to sit and think can be at a minimum. I needed someone to be accountable to, someone who I could trust to send me an email out of nowhere saying, “How’s it going? What are you working on right now? Send me something.” It made making time to write more real to me and I really needed that. Continue reading
By R.S. Mellete
In 2015, when we first decided to have a booth at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, I had no idea where we should request our booth. When I looked at the map of the festival, I saw Childs Way and figured that’s where the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators should be, right?
I’m not from Los Angeles. I didn’t go to USC or UCLA. The most time I’ve ever spent on either campus has been working on movie locations, so I had no idea that Child’s Way was the name of a street, not a section of the festival — which ended up being in the “Hero Complex.” Continue reading
Each year, the Sue Alexander Service and Encouragement Award is presented to a regional volunteer who has shown exceptional dedication to SCBWI Los Angeles. This year’s winner, Karol Ruth Silverstein, credits her time volunteering as Schmooze/LitMingle Meister with signing with an agent and subsequently selling a book. She’s since moved on to be our Contest Coordinator and is so dedicated, she was just featured in our previous “Volunteer Spotlight” (here). So instead of the usual spotlight fare, I thought we’d do something a little different and ask Karol some fun questions.
SARAH PARKER-LEE: If you could volunteer for anything you wanted to, other than SCBWI, what would you choose? Continue reading
We love our volunteers at SCBWI and couldn’t exist without them! “Volunteer Spotlight” is a great way to get to know them for yourself and learn more about what they do and how you can volunteer too. Now meet Jessica Chrysler, the Los Angeles Region’s Social Media Coordinator.
When I joined the SCBWI in 2008, I had just graduated from art school. I had no idea how to get published and I hadn’t read the latest best-seller in middle grade, but I knew without a doubt that I wanted to create stories—books specifically. So I attended the South Bay Schmooze, and within the first two meetings, I became the co-coordinator. I was scared at first—I had no idea how this stuff worked—but soon I discovered that I was in the same place as most of the members in our area. Time to roll up my sleeves and jump into some research! Continue reading
We love our volunteers at SCBWI and couldn’t exist without them! “Volunteer Spotlight” is a great way to get to know them for yourself and learn more about what they do and how you can volunteer too. Now meet Jill Tuckman, digital artist and the Los Angeles region’s webmaster.
I am humbled, honored, and still a little bit surprised to be the Webmaster for the SCBWI Los Angeles Region. I joined SCBWI immediately upon discovering the organization, as it seemed the perfect place to learn about the children’s publishing industry. Continue reading
The SCBWI L.A. Hollywood LitMingle started humbly. For the past three years, Deborah Blum and Jean Perry (that’s me) have taken the mingle from a living room to the meeting space at the Hollywood Fairfax Library. It’s absolutely delicious to meet with other children’s writers. We who gather on those special Thursdays “get” each other. We find friends whose eyes don’t glaze over at the mention of plot and inciting incident. When we talk about crisis and climax, we can ask which is which. Picture book, middle grade, young adult, and new adult writers are welcomed to this free event every month. We usually start out full group, and then break into small groups based on genre, to get the specific support we need. Mingles are open to the public.
We love our volunteers at SCBWI and couldn’t exist without them! “Volunteer Spotlight” is a great way to get to know them for yourself and learn more about what they do and how you can volunteer too. Now meet Gina Capaldi, Illustrator Coordinator for the SCBWI’s Inland Empire, also known as SoCal.
The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators is a dynamic community of professionals and aspirings. Read on for a member’s story about how SCBWI has influenced their work and connected them to publishing professionals, life-long friends, and the tools they need to share their stories with children of all ages. Read on for former Hollywood LitMingle Coordinator Deborah Fletcher Blum’s story!
The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators launched my career as a filmmaker. It may sound odd to credit a children’s writers and illustrators group with this, but writing and filmmaking are integrally connected artistic disciplines. As an artist and English teacher, who wrote poetry and non-fiction, I embarked on a middle grade novel in the Summer of 2010 and joined SCBWI soon after.
We love our volunteers at SCBWI and couldn’t exist without them! “Volunteer Spotlight” is a great way to get to know them for yourself and learn more about what they do – and how you can volunteer. Now meet Chester Perryess, Central/Coastal CA regional Schlepper and Minion:
I’m an introvert. I’m happiest at home making those characters come to life, or sequestered in my “shedio” narrating audiobooks, or researching etymologies for Wordmonger, my blog about words. Still, I volunteer out in the Big Scary World and encourage my fellow introverts to consider doing the same.