42 Annual SCBWI Summer Conference, of which I did not attend. Why, you may ask, that a budding author like myself did not attend the writing event of the year when it's held in my own backyard? Because I didn't have an extra $1,000.00 in my budget for this event: $500.00-registration, $56.00 -parking, $100.00 -food, $100.00 -manuscript consultation*, $220.00 -Post conference intensives*, and an untold amount of cash for all the books I would want to buy and have autographed by all the talented people at the conference. (Note: the cost goes up another $1,000 if I want to stay at the hotel and not commute back and forth.) So, I did the next best thing, I followed the event through social media. It wasn't the same as being there, but it was a perfect fit for my budget.
*This is optional but if you're going to go, why not go all in, right?
I have attended this event in the past, on a part-time basis, and found it electrifying! Sadly, part-time attendance is no longer an option, due to the event selling out each year. But, as I said above, I did follow through social media and was able to glean some tips I found worthy of sharing:
- Nobody but a reader ever became a writer. --Richard Peck
- A good writer leaves a question unanswered (at the end) without undoing the story.--Krista Marino
- One thing I learned from sports: it's all about how hard you work when no one's watching you. --Matt de la Pena
- We start in the story, not at the beginning.--Richard Peck
- Often it is not what you say, but how you say it. --Andrea Pinkney, executive editor at Scholastic.
- Don't put kids to sleep; wake them up! --Jon Scieszks
- -Your first chapter is your last chapter in disguise. -- Richard Peck
- I would love my clients to think of themselves as brands because this is a for-profit business. Thinking of yourself as a brand ... you're going to see more success earlier on. --Ginger Clark literary agent with Curtis Brown, LTD.
- You can't write for the trends. As long as it's strong and fresh, agents are open to it. --Deborah Halverson
- If you will it, it is not a dream. If you want it, you can have it. It's up to you. --Henry Winkler
- Richard Peck's Workshop: Shaping Story From The Opening Line
- Richard Peck's Golden Kite Luncheon Keynote: "Writing at Eye Level, Not Grade Level"
- SCBWI Member of the Year: Alexis O'Neill
- Andrea Pinkney Workshop: From Idea to Acquisition: Turning Your Brainstorm Into Books
- Peter Lerangis Keynote: Taking the 'Middle out of Middle Grade Fiction'
- A Baker's Dozen of Conference Tips For Your Travel Day...
This is only a sample of the great tips and quotes I found on social media. To see more check out the official blog, #LA13SCBWI, and Facebook. If you're thinking about going next year, you can also check out the events schedule from this year to see what you missed. For actual photos take a peek at the highlights from the 2012 summer conference because the photos for the 2013 aren't up yet.
Did you attend this year's conference? Are you going to the International SCBWI Conference Winter Conference in New York? Do you wonder why the summer conference is in L.A. and the winter conference is in New York, too?