Our 2006 Fall Conference got underway Friday evening with a social hour followed by round table critique groups. Writers brought a manuscript in progress to share with fellow attendees, who first encouraged and then made suggestions on ways to improve the work.
Saturday morning started with a funny and informative keynote address by Jim Murphy. A series of workshop sessions filled the time between the talk and lunch. Sessions covered topics such as writing easy readers and creating characters. Illustrators enjoyed a round table discussion facilitated by John Manders and Leda Miller.
Between workshops, attendees browsed the bookstore, tried their luck as the silent auction for prizes such as baskets of books, SCBWI memberships and critique sessions with published authors.
Attendees also met with editors or published authors for manuscript critiques, strolled through the illustrators’ room to admire the portfolio display or read the On The Wall contest entries.
After a buffet lunch of soup, salad, sandwich fixings and a yummy selection from the ever–popular desert table, editors Melanie Cecka (Bloomsbury), Elizabeth Crooker Carpentiere (Cobblestones) and Harriet Ziefert talked about submission procedures at their houses.
More workshop sessions rounded out the afternoon, covering topics such as writing a query letter that gets noticed or how to add to your income and collect clips by writing magazine pieces.
As usual, the conference provided members with an opportunity to make new friends, renew acquaintances, get advice on a work in progress, learn about different aspects of writing and illustrating and just get away from the daily grind for twenty–four hours to talk children’s books with fellow authors and illustrators.