Monday, March 30, 2015


We have a late-breaking news flash about our 
SCBWI Western Washington Conference!
After this year, we will be producing our beloved conference EVERY OTHER YEAR
Don't worry––we will be creating other valuable and exciting programming for next April in place of the conference. However, if you have been on the fence about signing up for this year's conference, NOW IS THE TIME TO REGISTER
We won't be offering this kind of experience again until 2017.

Why is this happening, you may wonder…. In order to create a schedule that our hardworking volunteers can sustain, we've decided to alternate retreats and conferences. Another advantage to this alternating schedule is that we know it's often difficult to choose which special event to spend your dollars on. If you've only been able to attend one event per year, you can do so without needing to make the choice between two great options.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

April author/illustrator events


YA = young adult
MG = middle grade
PB = picture book
NF = nonfiction

University Book Store
Third Place Books
Elliott Bay Book Company
Secret Garden Books
Seattle Central Library 

April 1, 7PM
Christa Pierce, Do You Know That I Love You? (PB)
University Bookstore, Bellevue

April 3, 6PM
Christa Pierce, Do You Know That I Love You? (PB)
University Bookstore, Bellevue

April 4, 7PM
Christa Pierce, Do You Know That I Love You? (PB)
Third Place Books, Ravenna

April 10, 11:30AM
Heather Brewer, Victoria Aveyard, Danielle Paige, and Sara Raasch, The Cemetery Boys, Red Queen, The Wicked Will Rise, and Snow Like Ashes (YA)
University Bookstore, U-District

April 12, 1PM
Middle-Grade Mania
Authors include: Steven Arntson, Faith Harkey, Marcia Wells, and Greg Trine
The Trap, Genuine Sweet, Eddie Red Undercover: Mystery in Mayan Mexico, Willy Maykit in Space (MG)
University Bookstore, Bellevue

April 17, 1PM
Neil Gaiman, American Gods, Sandman comics, Coraline (YA)
University Bookstore, HUB Ballroom
Tickets are $18 for University and $35 for General Admission

April 18, 6:30PM
Gretchen Wing, Headwinds, and The Flying Burgowski (MG)
Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park

April 22, 7PM
Caroline Allen, Earth (YA)
Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park

Django Weller, The Mad Apprentice (MG, YA)
University Bookstore, U-District

April 28, 7PM
Jackson Pearce, Maggie Stiefvater, Pip Bartlett’s Guide To Magical Creatures (MG)
University Bookstore, U-District

April 28, 7PM
Richard Wagamese, Medicine Walk (YA)
Seattle Central Library

April 29, 7PM
Jackson Pearce, Maggie Stiefvater, Pip Bartlett’s Guide To Magical Creatures (MG)
Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park

April 30, 7PM
Sabaa Tahir, An Ember In The Ashes (YA)
University Bookstore, U-District

April Northern Network meeting

Northern Network Meeting of SCBWI

Spring is POPping up all over, and we’re going to meet on April 1st (no fooling!) to look at pop-up books!

Elisa Claassen has an extensive collection of pop-up books, and she will bring some for us to look at. So plan to pop in to our meeting!

Date: Wednesday, April 1
Time: 7pm
Location: The Bellingham Barnes & Noble (4099 Meridian Street)

Questions? Call Rebecca Van Slyke at (360) 354-5797, or email her at [That’s rebecca(underscore)vanslyke(at)hotmail(dot)com.]

Monday, March 23, 2015

All things conference!

Hello, all you conference-registrants and potential conference attendees:

Several reminders and updates.

1) The special weekend rate for conference-goers at the Redmond Marriott ends this 
this coming Friday, March 27. The rate for our group is currently $109, and it goes up
after this week. If you are on the fence and need extra motivation, here it is! The 
entire weekend's offerings are so much more bang for your buck when you actually
save a few on your room. Just saying....
2) The Illustrator Intensives are now sold out. 
3) The Roundtables are going fast, with a couple of sessions already sold out. If you 
are hoping for someone to give you feedback, please don't miss out. It's always popular
and is the only way to get professional feedback on your works in progress.
4) Kid Lit Drink Night is for anyone and everyone, regardless of attending the conference. 

That's all for now. Please consider joining us if you're still undecided. We have a lot of fun, and
there's a whole community waiting to support and inspire you!


And so they met....and how!

At Seattle Pacific University, in Demaray Hall. They shuffled and skipped and loped and meandered until they found their seats.

And then, dear readers, they learned.

So, so much!

Read on, and let this be an inspiration to you to attend future meetings in which the transmission of wisdom and experience and creativity and ambition end up happily scrambled in your brains. As always, we look forward to seeing everyone there.

But I digress.

Jennifer Bradbury, right, with Stephanie Guerra.
Last Thursday, March 19, our chapter had itself a humdinger of a meeting. First up, YA authors Jennifer Bradbury and Stephanie Guerra talked COLLABORATION.

These two former critique-group-mates decided to work on a project, which has turned into an upcoming early chapter book series. Besides being individually talented and prolific, they discussed how two writers with very distinct personalities and ideas pushed through the creative process. Through mutual respect, patience, negotiation, and pure enjoyment, they figured out how to elevate the work by staying true to their best ideas.

The result will the Zach and Lucy series (Simon Spotlight), which hits shelves soon. While publication was a bonus in their initial decision to tackle a collaborative effort, both writers agreed that, above all, they made it work because they placed their friendship above everything else.

Who could possibly follow such inspirational writers? LIBRARIANS, that's who!

Librarians let loose! Our esteemed panel shares the importance of reaching kids.

Brenda Winter-Hansen moderated a panel of five (count 'em!) librarians from Seattle Public Library branches and Seattle Public Schools. They represented everything from board books and storytimes to middle-school and elementary school.

What's on their minds? We wanted to know, and they told us:

1) Diversity. They crave books that reflect their children, from ethnic backgrounds to various life experiences.

2) Hand-sells. You kinda had to be there, but each librarian had a few titles that they encouraged kids to wrap their minds around. If, for nothing else, than to get them to look beyond the predictable series-to-series pattern.

3) How to get your book into the library. Go to the library. Tell them you're a local author. Even stealthier, get your friends to request your books and they will order more copies. Meet the librarians. They won't bite. Come talk to them, establish a relationship, and offer to do a Teen book group or a storytime, or a talk.

4) Reach out to the most under-served kids. This is a priority. A book in the hands of a kid who attends a tougher school might not own their own books. Come to these schools, out of the goodness of your heart, because they just don't have the money to pay you for your appearance. But it makes a difference.

Conference reason Number Four!

Conference reason Number Four!

Number Four: The Nuggets

Our conference provides opportunities aplenty for unforgettable nuggets of wisdom to sneak into your consciousness. Call it serendipity, or just plain coincidence, but the magic tends to occur during the panel or keynote you weren't so sure you were going to bother with. Not an illustrator? Gee, then how come you can't stop thinking about that artist's concept of "play"? Not a writer? So how did that part about the freedom to fail get stuck on Replay in your head? That is why conferences are so great: we listen, sure, but when we really HEAR, it's usually the nuggets we least expect that get our attention––and stay there.

Conference faculty profile: Julie Paschkis

Picture-books are Julie Paschkis' passion!

Author and illustrator Julie Paschkis says, “Nature abhors a vacuum, and so do I. I like to paint whenever and wherever possible.” Julie has illustrated over 20 picture books for children (some of which she has written). The books are all different because the paintings are made to bring the text to life, but they are united by a love of color and pattern, and by a respect for the children and the readers. Her illustrations have been honored by the New York Times, The Americas Award, Kirkus and Horn Book. Julie also creates paintings, designs textiles, and makes quilts. Most of her work tells stories, and much of it is inspired by a love of folk art. “I don’t care much about the boundaries between high and low art; I find equal joy in creating art for a greeting card, a book or an installation in a gallery. Good work is good in any genre.”

Website: Julie Paschkis

Article: Seattle Magazine, 2011 

Julie's conference schedule:

 Roundtable Critique Sessions

Conference reason Number Five!

Conference reason Number Five!

Number Five: The tables aren't square

[WARNING: Bad Joke Ahead!]

Because they're ROUND!! Get it? Our conference features our most popular add-on, the Roundtable Critique Session. Last year, folks who were too late to sign up for the Roundtables stood outside the conference rooms, hoping for an empty chair at the not-square tables. But we sold out so fast, and our waiting list was so deep, we had to turn people away. It wasn't pretty. This year, we wanted everyone and then some to have a chance to experience this amazing event, so we added MORE. This year's conference will feature Roundtables––led by VIP faculty guests and local luminaries––on both Friday and Sunday. You'll be getting direct feedback from industry experts. Your work will benefit. You will emerge on the other side with a new confidence, and an excitement about your craft. Sometimes, it isn't hip to be square (oops, I did it again!), so sign up for a Roundtable Session, coming soon to a Redmond Marriott near you!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Fiction Magician Deb Lund

"Abracadabra" isn't just a word in the beginning of the dictionary. Our very own Inside Story maven, picture book author, and teacher Deb Lund has developed a magic card deck designed to help your story find its way into the world. With extensive motivational prompts and tips, Deb's Fiction Magic will push you toward your writing goals. In her presentation next weekend, Deb will talk you through her tricks and help you apply them to your own work. Bring your manuscripts, your outlines, your laptop, or a single idea. Let Deb work her magic, and you're on your way!

SATURDAY, MARCH 28 from 2–3:30pm at the Mukilteo Library

Graphic Artists Guild March workshop

Graphic Artists Guild March Workshop
Designing for the Game Industry

Wednesday, March 25th   12-1:30pm

Seattle Design Center
5701 6th Ave. S.
Seattle WA 98108

How do you get started in game design?
What background do you need?
What are the companies and how do you get your foot in the door?

Our gaming panel is ready to answer these are more questions in this month's fun and informative roll through the dramatic landscape of gaming.

Details and ticket information:

Janet 's book arrives!

You're invited to a Book Birthday Party for:
In The Time of Dragon Moon by Janet Lee Carey
WHERE: Parkplace Books, 348 Parkplace Center, Kirkland WA
WHEN: Saturday March 28 at 4pm

Janet Lee Carey

COME: Authors, Illustrators, Friends, Families, Dragons & Fairies  
ENJOY: Food, Wine, and Fun (don't miss Peggy King Anderson's chocolate éclairs!)
WEAR: Costumes if you please, or come in comfy jeans & tees
MAKE: Dragon's-Egg Shakers
PLAY: Percussion for the Mighty Dragon Dance!

HELP: us fill the Nature Conservancy’s 
Save the Rainforest jar.  
For more about the book and its author: JanetLeeCarey!!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Can't wait till THURSDAY!

Don't miss this one!

This month's Professional Series program meeting will be one for the books...literally! From authors to librarians sharing their inside stories, you'll come away with a huge appreciation for the way words find their way to you. 

Featuring: TWO stellar local authors (below) and (count 'em) five local librarians from schools and branches of the Seattle Public Library, who will cover a variety of topics from tips for planning an author/illustrator visit, to strategies for getting your books on their shelves.

WHEN: This THURSDAY, March 19 from 7–9pm

WHERE: Seattle Pacific University, Demaray Hall