Thursday, October 31, 2013

Kid Lit Drink Night a Howling Success!

We were all in costume. Guess which one is Brenda.
You should have been at the Ram last night, because the dirty kid lit-themed limericks were flying fast and furious. Beth Stanton even brought two, complete with illustrations! The judges (me) couldn't decide whose was best, so Dana Arnim, Helen Landalf, Beth Stanton and Brenda Winter Hansen will all be sharing one seat on Jack Gantos' private jet when he flies home from his gig at the UW on Nov 7. They are on the hook for somehow getting back home. Brenda, also winner of the costume contest, will be getting one complimentary beverage on that jet.

Here are the limericks:
A vampire trying his luck,
Tipped the waitress a whole extra buck,
Within five minutes of flirt,
She saw blood on her shirt, 
So she slapped him and said,

Dude, you suck!

There was a young wizard named Harry
Who of girls was suspiciously wary
When he stumbled upon
A fine fellow named Ron
He said, "Now it makes sense: I'm a fairy!"

There was a young wizard named Potter
Who, as he grew older, got hotter
Mrs. Weasley & Pa
They laid down the law
And said keep your mitts off our daughter!

Elizabeth Rose Stanton
okay, this isn't really a limerick, but it's gross and illustrated, so it's a winner in my book

Even better: gross, illustrated AND a limerick. Well done, Beth!

Calling all authors! You read it right here!

Bloomsbury Spark, a global digital imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing, has flung open its virtual doors, seeking fiction e-books in the teen/YA/New Adult genres.

For all the details and conditions, please click here. Here's hoping someone in our chapter will submit, and we can post their good news sometime soon. Go for it, writers!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

FAQs: Frequently Asked...Queries?

? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? 

Have you ever wondered about query letters? What are they? How do you write a dynamic query letter that will catch the eye and pique the interest of an editor or agent?

Join us on Wednesday, November 6 for the Northern Network's Queries on Query Letters event to have your queries about query letters answered!

WHAT: Northern Network November meeting
WHEN: 7pm
WHERE: Barnes & Noble (4099 Meridian Street, Bellingham)

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

Hope to see you!

Wahmans 1, 2, 3

Please join Wendy and Joe Wahman (Snowboy 1, 2, 3) for a special event at University Book Store, Bellevue (990 102nd Ave NE) on Saturday, November 9 at 2pm.

Featuring drawing, hot cocoa, reading, and a sung rendition of Snowboy. Sounds like the perfect welcome to the wintry season.

Mark your calendars for Write-O-Rama Dec. 7

Hugo House, Seattle's only entire building devoted to writers and writing, will hold its next fundraising (and motivation-raising) Write-O-Rama on Saturday, December 7.

This event is a great way to play musical chairs with writing instructors, creative ideas, skills, genres, and techniques, experimenting all day long and pumping up your creative muscles for a good cause. Consider giving it to yourself as a pre-holiday gift. Click here for all the details.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Hurry! Get on the Inside track!

Inside Story is under a week away!

Which means, dear SCBWI-WWA folk, your presence will make all the difference! Please come!
Support all the great work by your colleagues and mentors, ideas that became BOOKS. Mockingbird Books is the place to be, starting at 4pm. Please RSVP to to attend.

Featured presenters include:

Dana Sullivan, Karen Lewis, Patrick Flores-Scott, Jaime Temairik, Roy Kindelberger, Elizabeth Rose Stanton, Nina Laden, Kathryn O. Galbraith, Dia Calhoun, Craig Orback, Brenda Z Guiberson, Suzanne Williams, Richard Jesse Watson, Samantha R. Vamos, Stasia Ward Kehoe, Lorie Ann Grover, and Matthew Porter.

Inside Story is more than a celebration of new books. It’s inspiration to create your own! The event began as an opportunity to support our local bookstores and librarians, and it’s stuffed with information on the “inside stories” of children’s books from picture books to YA—with the feel of a fast-paced game show.

Our Western Washington Inside Story has been so successful that the international SCBWI is now piloting it with numerous chapters across the United States. Read about that here

At our upcoming Inside Story, you’ll hear a little about its history from Laura Kvasnosky, who created the concept for this popular event. In the late 1990s, George Shannon spearheaded brainstorm sessions with authors and children's booksellers. With George's help, Laura's idea took hold, and Chauni Haslett, a well-loved bookseller who ran All For Kids Books and Music, offered her program room as a place to meet. The rest, as they say, is history. Inside Story has evolved through the years, but the mission remains to support our local bookstores and those who connect books with kids.

Don’t miss this special celebration of our Inside Story being sent out into the world. Invite librarians, booksellers, teachers, and families to join in the fun. Come hang out with your peers, play the trivia game, win books, and gobble up scrumptious munchies!

The illustrators were met...and how!

Saturday's "Make Art and Meet the Illustrators" Day was just glorious. We all owe Tina Hoggatt, our Public Event Coordinator, a big, fat thanks for putting together our first-ever illustrator show at the Convention Center and then coordinating this day of art-making. Another load of big thanks goes to the many illustrators who got messy with the kids. Some showed how to crack secret codes, some how to make books, others how to cut stuff out and glue it back in wonderful ways and others just stepped back and let the kids rip.

Finally, another thanks and declaration of eternal gratitude to Christy MacDonald and Suzanne Perry of Secret Garden Books, who made sure we had books by our illustrators to sell at the event. Thanks to all of you. Here are some photos from writer/illustrator Elizabeth Blake, mom Teresa Mundel and yours truly (Dana Sullivan, who took the below pics, unless otherwise specified).
Admiring the art (photo: Kjersten Hayes)
Step right up! This way! (photo: Kjersten Hayes)
What a crowd!
Wendy Wahman captivates the kids.
Sarah Romano Diehl and Bronwyn
The long-necked dinosaur
Cracking codes with Kathryn Dennis
Ollie's monster
Minah's monster
Yay, Secret Garden Books!
Making books with Wendy
The soccer mouse
The fashion plate
She's a writer AND illustrator!
Too busy to smile
A perfectly framed pumpkin
Susie and Richard Jesse Watson
Dana Arnim and Brenda Winter Hansen
Dad gets into it too!
Robyn finds a typo.
"I didn't do everything!" "Shut up, Tina!"
Sami knows his stripes.
Mili and Sami
Collage grads
Some even limped in.
Spencer and Dana
Art everywhere!
We love Suzanne and Christy!
Let the wild rumpus begin!
Future watercolor society members

South Sound Network meeting

The South Sound-ers invite one and all to their monthly meeting on Tuesday, November 5 from 7-9pm.

by Nikki McClure

Olympia-based author, artist, and illustrator Nikki McClure will be the featured guest. Everyone is welcome! (If you haven't seen Nikki's gorgeous papercuts, you are in for a real treat.)

WHERE: Olympia! Evergreen State College (library classroom 0406). For directions, click here.

Pickled tink for Kim Baker

Here's a nice piece of good news to share!

Our very own former Regional Advisor and Crystal Kite Award winner, Kimberly Baker, just received word that her book, Pickle, has been included on a list of nominees for the Texas Library Association's Texas Bluebonnet Award. Check out their website for a full list of other nominees and details about the award.

Congratulations, Kim! Fingers crossed!

Hear Jack Gantos Nov. 7

The University of Washington's Spencer G. Shaw Endowed Lecture Series will feature Newbery Medalist Jack Gantos in a talk called "It's All Personal" on Thursday, Nov. 7, from 7:00 - 9:30 p.m.

Gantos is the author of DEAD END IN NORVELT and the newly released FROM NORVELT TO NOWHERE, as well as a young adult memoir called HOLE IN MY LIFE. Learn more or register.

Kid Lit Drink Night TOMORROW!

That's right, tomorrow night is Kid Lit Drink Night. Boo!

Find us in the Bar of the Ram in University Village, starting at 6:30pm. Come gird your loins for Halloween, when our real constituents (children) will come banging on our doors!
(The horror!) The dirty, kid lit-themed limerick contest is still on and there will be fabulous prizes for best costume.

See you tomorrow. Be there or be scared!

Monday, October 28, 2013

The Big Apple beckons

What could be better than autumn in New York?


SCBWI just announced that registration is open for its 2014 Winter Conference, which will be held at the Grand Hyatt, above Grand Central Station. Held February 21-23, it will feature keynotes from kidlit luminaries Jack Gantos, Sharon Draper, Elizabeth Wein, Kate Messner, and plenty of panels to satisfy all your questions and provide months worth of inspiration.

(Please note that the add-on intensives sell out quickly, and may not be available.)

Come get the scoop - and get ahead on holiday book buys!

Wanna see what's hot? Come to SCBWI Western Washington's Fall 2013 Inside Story this coming Sunday, Nov. 3, at Mockingbird Books. We hold this celebration twice a year for booksellers, librarians, teachers, and other children's book lovers like YOU can hear the "stories behind the stories" of new and upcoming books by our local talents.

Sunday's featured presenters include Dana Sullivan, Karen Lewis, Patrick Flores-Scott, Jaime Temairik, Roy Kindelberger, Elizabeth Rose Stanton, Nina Laden, Kathryn O. Galbraith, Dia Calhoun, Craig Orback, Brenda Z Guiberson, Suzanne Williams, Richard Jesse Watson, Samantha R. Vamos, Stasia Ward Kehoe, Lorie Ann Grover, and Matthew Porter. Yay, new books!

Please RSVP to to attend.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Helen Landalf and the Ballard Writers Collective

Come one, come all to the fourth annual The Writer Next Door event, presented by the Ballard Writers Collective. This event will feature author readings, an Ask-An-Author panel, book sales, a raffle, and much more fun.

It's also a great way, with a $15 book sampler, to get a book or two (or three) at a bargain, and take care of some of those early holiday gifts.

Our very own Helen Landalf will be reading, and she wrote in her blog about how much she loves this event.

WHEN: Friday, November 1, at 7 p.m. (doors open at 6pm)
WHERE: Sunset Hill Community Club, 3003 NW 66th St

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Northwest Bookfest

This year's Northwest Bookfest takes place next weekend and will feature many local SCBWI  members. (Please note: SCBWI WWA is not affiliated with or a sponsor of Northwest Bookfest.)

The event includes panels, exhibits and vendors, and workshops galore. Bookfest takes place over Saturday and Sunday of next weekend, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. both days, at Northwest University (5520 108th Avenue in downtown Kirkland.) Tickets cost $99 (or $79 for PNWA members) and provide admission to both days of presentations and workshops.

Local SCBWI members who will present or appear as part of a panel include Megan Bostic, Jennifer Bradbury, Deb Caletti, Janet Lee Carey, J. Anderson Coats, Kathryn Dennis, Karen Finneyfrock, Stephanie Guerra, Katherine Schlick Noe, Eric Ode, Suzanne Selfors, Trudi Trueit, and Dorine White, among many others.

Get more information or purchase tickets.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Jennifer Mann talks turkey

Congratulations to illustrator Jennifer K. Mann, who will join author George Shannon to celebrate the launch of their new picture-book collaboration, Turkey Tot.

The fun starts at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 3, at Bainbridge Island's Eagle Harbor Books. T(r)ot on down there!

Two calls for artwork

Two opportunities, same deadline: November 4

1) 4Culture, the cultural arts agency for King Country, seeks original, high-quality works on paper and photographs by studio artists residing in Washington and Oregon for inclusion in the King County Public Art Collection. Illustrators are strongly urged to apply to this purchase opportunity at 4Culture, the cultural arts agency for King County.

Artists wishing to be considered for this opportunity should submit up to six images of works that are available for purchase; submitted work must be reserved “on hold” until notifications go out in early December. Artists are encouraged to submit works that incorporates color as well as themes and/or imagery suitable for public settings and culturally diverse audiences. For the sake of portability, the artwork dimension will be limited to a minimum of 14 inches and/or a maximum of 38 inches in height or width, and maximum of 3 inches in depth. To learn more, visit their site and apply online.

2) Jack Straw Productions is currently offering residencies for their 2014 Artist Support Program. Up to eight artists/teams are awarded up to 20 hours of free recording and production time with an engineer at Jack Straw Productions. To apply and learn more details about this program, please visit the residency application page on their website.

(Hearty thanks to Tina Hoggatt, who sent these great opportunities for local artists our way!)

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Weekend on the Water reading list

For those who asked at last Thursday's meeting, and for those who just need a refresher, here is the list of books that will be discussed at the Weekend on the Water retreat in early November.

As per Patti Lee Gauch's instructions, selected sections of these books will be referenced in the workshops and discussions with Patricia Lee Gauch and Linda Urban.

  • OLIVE KITTERIDGE, by Elizabeth Strout
  • THE FAULT IN OUR STARS, by John Green
  • WEDNESDAY WARS, by Gary Schmidt
  • OKAY FOR NOW, by Gary Schmidt's new look

They did it! SCBWI just launched its new website today, and yes, it had some initial glitches that are still working their way out. Test it out and see how it goes, but don't tear out your hair if it's not fully cooperative. It will be soon, you can bet on it. All good things take time!

Once it's all sorted, the new-and-improved site will provide the following––and more!––for members: an online bookstore, podcasts, blog listings, a new Illustrators Gallery, blueboards, a Bulletin archive, book launches, and even video intensives.

So give it a few days, maybe a week. When all's said and done, it's going to be a tremendous resource. Stay tuned....

Come see artists, live and uncaged, on Sunday!

SCBWI Western Washington is currently hosting its first-ever public exhibition of children's book illustration at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle, and this Sunday, Oct. 27, is a family open house complete with a chance to create art, meet dozens of artists (really!), and collect their autographs. Join the fun from 2:00 - 5:00 p.m., and be sure to bring the kids.

Show organizer Tina Hoggatt says, "We'll have fun. And save the date for our Winter Celebration from 5:00-8:00 p.m. on December 12, when we will meet for good news and good cheer during the last month of the exhibit."

See you at the Convention Center!

Martha and Suzanne's big hairy deal

It's your last chance to attend a Big Hairy Deal Party!
Martha Brockenbrough and Suzanne Selfors are teaming up to celebrate their Sasquatch books. Martha's Finding Bigfoot, written for Animal Planet, is a stupendous look at the history and science behind the local legend. Suzanne's The Sasquatch Escape is a middle-grade adventure story with delightful illustrations by Dan Santat.

Come hear this dynamic duo share bigfoot stories, and  make your own bigfoot footprint while you munch on (edible!) Sasquatch droppings.

WHEN: Sunday, October 27, at 2 p.m.
WHERE: Mockingbird Books, 7220 Woodlawn Ave NE, Seattle 98115