Thursday, February 25, 2016

Art Show sold out!

Sorry---all the spots are now accounted for. If you want to be put on a waitlist for the April Art Show, please go back to your individual registration for our 2015-16 season and you can resubmit your information there.


Lynn's good news


Just wanted to share that my latest YA, Out in the Dark, under the pen name, Nicola Adams, is out.

It was released by publisher Untreed Reads in both ebook and paperback on Feb. 11.
Author events will follow.  Find all info on it here: Out in the Dark

Straight from the back cover:
Jake’s father is one of a group of psychic warriors from a CIA/Stanford University project designed to train people in “remote viewing,” but he's been taken by a rogue unit with more sinister plans for his skills. Now, seventeen-year-old Jake must set out on a journey to rescue his father. Jake doesn't know where his father is, and his only clues are the flashes of images he gets in his mind. Taking his father's vintage 1966 Pontiac GTO, Jake sets out across the Cascades from Washington, to Nevada. Along the way he picks up Shelley, a girl scarred by poverty and who has had to do some pretty unpleasant things to get together enough money to go to college. He was only going to give her a lift to Nevada, but soon they're both running for their lives.
 “A fast-paced roller coaster adventure for a daring young man, trying to save his father’s life.” Lynne Kennedy, author of Pure Lies
“Following secret government psychic experiments, Jake needs all the help he can get to save his father. The psychic link helps him … mostly! Stephen King needs to watch out!” Richard Hardie author of the Temporal Detective Agency series.


Lynn Hooghiemstra
CONGRATULATIONS, Lynn! Keep us posted on your events!


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

GN = graphic novel

March 2, 7PM
Nina Laden, Are We There Yet? (PB)--BOOK LAUNCH PARTY
University Book Store, U-District

March 2, 7PM
Kathryn Aalto, The Natural World Of Winnie the Pooh: A Walk Through the Forest that Inspired the Hundred Acre Wood (NF)
Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park

March 5, 3PM
Loralee Leavitt, Candy Experiments 2 (MG)
University Book Store, Bellevue 

March 5, NOON

Jessixa Bagley, Before I Leave (PB)
Third Place Books, Ravenna
March 8, 6PM
A TYRANNY OF PETTICOATS anthology: authors Marissa Meyer, J. Anderson Coats, and Jessica Spotswood, and Leslye Walton. (Historical YA)
University Book Store, Bellevue

March 11, 11:30AM
Ashley Rhodes-Courter, Three Little Words (NF, YA)
Washington State Convention Center, 800 Convention Place, Seattle

March 12, 2PM
Jeanie Mebanem, At the Marsh In the Meadow (PB)--BOOK LAUNCH PARTY!
University Book Store, Bellevue

March 12, 4:30PM
Robin Preiss Glasser, Fancy Nancy’s Saturday Night Sleepover, and You Made Me a Mother (PB)
Secret Garden Books

March 18, 11AM
STORY TIME with Nancy Armo, A Friend for Mole (PB)
Mockingbird Books

March 19, 2PM
Peter Lerangis, The Legend of the Rift; Seven Wonders #5 (YA)
Secret Garden Books

March 25, 7PM
Nancy Armo, A Friend For Mole (PB) - BOOK LAUNCH PARTY
University Book Store, U-District

March 26, 11AM
STORY TIME with Jessixa Bagley, Before I Leave (PB)
Mockingbird Books

March 26, 3PM
Alex Gino, George (YA)
University Book Store, U-District


February meeting recap

Yes, this is coming a little late, but February's monthly meeting was so good, you'll want to hear all about it if you weren't there:

In a stunning, Valentine's Day twist, our two presenters represented two sides of young-adult stories:




Fonda Lee brings us closer to the ACTION!

Fonda Lee, author of ZEROBOXER, is a black-belt martial artist and has done a lot of writing and thinking about fight scenes and the way we depict physical action in telling stories. Action, she told us, must contain a Climatic Moment, High Stakes, and Specificity. Her Principles of Great Action include: Action Evokes Emotion (in the characters and the reader); Action Must Serve a Narrative Purpose (consequences); and Action is About Character (character is revealed through decisions made under extreme circumstances).

Fonda's stellar outline featured so many pertinent details of how to deepen a scene and a character, whether they're about to hurt each other. It's about putting your characters in harm's way, emotionally, physically, or psychologically––and seeing how they behave/react.

Amber J. Keyser flings open the bedroom door.

On the other side of the spectrum, Amber J. Keyser spoke about THE V-WORD, her anthology of sexual awakenings and experiences by authors from their, ahem, formative years. Without talking around the issues surrounding sex, Amber made the case for WHY we need to include sex in our stories of teens: because it's a big part of their lives, of their self-discovery. And, it's always in their minds! To NOT write about it would be to leave out a very present and authentic aspect to the teenage experience. The goal in writing about sex, she emphasized, is to not write with the goal to titillate but to convey authentic experience––and all of its awkward, messy moments. If you choose to include it, then make it matter. Because it matters to teens. Being specific and honest and detailed will give the ultimate audience––teens––a way to figure their own sensibilities out.

LOOKING AHEAD: Stay tuned for specific posts on the blog with dates, etc.

Monthly meeting 3/16: Siblings in middle-grade stories (with SCBWI-Oregon's Roseanne Parry) AND a panel on Diversity (featuring Philip Lee, Liz Wong, and more)

Kid Lit Drink Night 3/10: Our fearless leaders, Kevan and Lois, are looking for a convivial place in the South End. Any suggestions? Please send them along to the blog, or to either of them directly.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Nina Laden's latest launch!

From the one and only Nina Laden herself:
We are almost there! Come celebrate the launch of my newest book, Are We There Yet?, at the University Book Store in Seattle's University District. There will be things to eat, drink, read, see... things to give away... and there will be fun and signed books! 

Tell your friends!
Tell their kids!

"Are We There Yet?" is almost HERE!

WHEN: Wednesday, MARCH 2 at 7pm
WHERE: University Book Store, U-District

There will be cool swag: bookmarks, stickers, and magnets! And I designed some really cool buttons and had them made.

There will be my famous gluten-free brownies and some other treats with gluten.

(I may even bring my ukulele, but don't hold me to it.)


Dana Simpson's book launch

THIS COMING SATURDAY • February 27 • 5:00PM

Don't miss: Dana Simpson's launch for her new book, UNICORNS vs. GOBLINS

Reading, Signing, and party!

University Book Store says it's "a hilarious story of friendship and adventure featuring awkward, nine-year-old dreamer Phoebe and her arrogant unicorn best friend. Local author and illustrator Dana Simpson's fun comic for kids is back. This time, Phoebe and Marigold Heavenly Nostrils—who's invisible to everyone but Phoebe and her friends—head to music camp for the summer. There Phoebe makes new friends—including Camp Wolfgang's lake monster and Marigold's spider-sneezing sister. And after returning to school, she and Marigold must rescue her frenemy Dakota from goblins attracted to her enchanted hair." 

WHERE: University Book Store, U-district
WHEN: This Saturday at 5pm!

Poetry! Free! For kids, too!

Local poet Michael Dylan Welch is presenting a series of talks about famous poets for free at the Redmond Library. While the series is not kidlit specific, two of the poets discussed are Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein. It’s a good opportunity to learn more about the poets’ backgrounds and how their experiences influenced their works. 

WHERE: Redmond Library 
WHEN:  See dates below! ALL PROGRAMS AT 6:30pm!

Petticoat junction

Now THIS looks Uh-Maze-Ing!

Please join Marissa Meyer, Leslye Walton, and J. Anderson Coats at the
University Book Store in Bellevue on March 8 at 6 pm for the Pacific
Northwest launch of the historical anthology, A TYRANNY OF PETTICOATS!
We'll be talking about women in history, discussing the creative process,
and answering your questions. Hope to see you there!

For all the information, click HERE

WHEN: Tuesday, March 8 at 6pm
WHERE: University Book Store, Bellevue

Inland NW events featuring WWA folks

Hi Western Washington,
We have a couple of SCBWI events coming up that we thought your members might be interested in. 

March 12th @ 9am:
 Suzanne Selfors is conducting a Webinar designed for PAL members titled, LEVELING UP: Strategies for Lifting Your Career to the Next Level.  Registration for this event is open for published and pre-published members.  The cost is $20, and the recorded webinar will be available to registrants for 1 week. Here's a link with the details.
April 23 (registration opens March 14th):
Another Western Washington resident, Bonny Becker, is coming to Spokane on April 23rd to teach a full day picture book intensive titled, THE SECRET TO WRITING GREAT PICTURE BOOKS.  Registration for this event opens Monday, March 14th.  We have some info on our website here.  If members would like to drop us an email, we'll send them a registration reminder with more details in March.

Rachel Hamby
Asst RA Inland NW Region

Annette's good news

More good news to send your way! Here's to being inspired by our members!

Fellow SCBWI-WWA member Annette Gulati entered the Diversity Scholarship contest sponsored by the Austin SCBWI chapter. She entered her manuscript, WISHING FOR SNOW...AND just learned she's the runner-up!

How about THAT? For all the details, CLICK HERE.

Congratulations, Annette!

BIG shout-out to Julie P!

GREAT NEWS for Julie Paschkis, who won the Cybil Award for poetry!

Julie Paschkis has won the prestigious Cybil award in Poetry for her bi-lingual picture book, Flutter and Hum. Beautifully illustrated poems in English and Spanish celebrate words and all they can mean in our world. 
Cybil Award Winner! Julie with her prized picture book.
From the judges:
“The author has combined so many elements for each poem and illustration that I kept finding something new each time I looked at it.” Also: “The poems are challenging and provocative”. . . “this book MATTERS, poetically and culturally.”

Congratulations, Julie! 

Put Flutter and Hum on your must-read list! And be sure to check out all the Cybil Award winners.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Monthly meeting NEXT WEDNESDAY!

Next Wednesday, prepare for an emotional roller-coaster. You will be taken to the heights of lust, er, LOVE, and to its combative opposite, WAR. Bring Kleenex, ice water, and some chocolate. It's going to get crazy up in here!

Amber J. Keyser!

Amber J. Keyser (THE V WORD, THE WAY BACK FROM BROKEN) and Fonda Lee (ZEROBOXER) will represent both extremes and how to best utilize them in your YA characters' lives. For more about Amber, click here.

Fonda Lee!

Fonda Lee writes science fiction and fantasy for teens and adults. She is an avid martial artist with black belts in karate and kung fu, and goes mad for smart action movies (think The Matrix, Inception, and Minority Report). Fonda’s the Willamette Writers Up and Coming Award winner for 2015 and her debut YA sci-fi action novel, Zeroboxer, is a Jr. Library Guild Selection, an Oregon Book Award finalist, and has been named to the ALA’s Top 10 Picks for Reluctant Readers, the CCBC Choices List, and VOYA’s annual list of the Best Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror. Fonda believes that phenomenal action writing is an often overlooked aspect of strong writing, and aims to share with you principles, examples, and tactics for making your readers' hearts pound with adrenaline.

We HEART these writers, and we HEART you, too! Come and rage and hug and weep and just let your emotions spill. It's okay. It's all good. You'll be among friends.

New York conference via your couch!

For those of you eager to follow along with SCBWI's 17th annual Winter Conference, SCBWI's indefatigable Team Blog (who counts among its cohort the intrepid Martha Brockenbrough, Jolie Stekly, and Jaime Temairik) will be blogging the sessions so that you don't have to brave the Arctic wind chill firsthand.

To vicariously experience the bounty, CLICK HERE!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Kid Lit Drink Night this THURSDAY

Join the fun! Bring your notebooks, sketchbooks, favorite jokes, your thirst, and come socialize with your TRIBE!

Hope to see you there!

February Kid Lit Drink Night
February 11 at Chainline Brewing Company in Kirkland! (DOG-FRIENDLY!)
6:30 pm - 10:00 pm, 503 6th St South, Kirkland

Amber J. Keyser times TWO!


Amber J. Keyser is an evolutionary biologist-turned-author who writes fiction and nonfiction for teens and tweens. Even though she lives in Oregon, she has been an SCBWI-Western Washington groupie for many years. She met the editor for her novel THE WAY BACK FROM BROKEN at one of our events and he was instrumental in placing her book SNEAKER CENTURY: A HISTORY OF ATHLETIC SHOES. She’s here to talk about her most recent title: THE V-WORD, a YA anthology of personal essays by women about first-time sexual experiences. 

Amber will be one of our featured speakers at our upcoming monthly meeting, representing LOVE in YA fiction opposite Fonda Lee (FIGHTING in YA fiction). It's going to be quite a heated event, so make your arrangements! If you can't make it Wednesday, Amber will appear at University Book Store the following night.

At SCBWI-WWA Professional Series meeting on February 17th, she will be talking about sex in young adult fiction, including WHY we should include sexy scenes, WHAT the boundaries are, and HOW to go about putting the hot stuff on the page. Expect the explicit!

On February 18th, Amber will be talking more specifically (but also explicitly) about THE V-WORD at University Bookstore. She hopes you can join her for both events. More information at

WHERE: Seattle Pacific University, Demaray Hall
WHEN: Wednesday, February 17 at 7pm

WHERE: University Book Store, U-district
WHEN: Thursday, February 18 at 7pm

NOTE: THERE WILL BE NO POST-LECTURE SMOKING! Go home and take your own cold showers!

Agent Clelia Gore at Hugo House

Join agent Clelia Gore at Hugo House on Saturday, February 20 for a class on Legal Concepts Writers Need To Know.

Useful information! Important stuff! Given by an agent who was a past regional conference faculty member! CLICK HERE for all the details and registration info.

Jessixa Bagley book launch

 Come help Jessixa celebrate!
Jessixa Bagley
Following on the heels of her much lauded debut picture book, BOATS FOR PAPA, the amazing Seattle-based author/illustrator Jessixa Bagley returns with her latest, BEFORE I LEAVE. The touching story of friends who have to say goodbye, this is sure to get plenty of attention as well.

WHEN: Tuesday, February 16 at 7pm
WHERE: Secret Garden Books, Ballard



Angela Taylor Hylland launch party


Saturday, February 13, 2016
Ballard Homestead
6541 Jones Ave NW, Seattle

Are you ready to dream... small?

Bring your imaginations to this free community event to celebrate The Denim Jungle, a new children's book by local author Angela Taylor Hylland, illustrated by Jackie Phillips of Precious Beast.

Enjoy activities, an author story time, giveaways, and more. Take home a book, have it signed by the debut author-illustrator duo, and even learn a few secrets behind the making of The Denim Jungle.

For more details or to RSVP, visit the Facebook event page:

Monday, February 1, 2016

Carole Estby Dagg's new book

Celebrating the launch of SWEET HOME ALASKA on February 2, Carole Estby Dagg will present two local programs illustrated by original Associated Press photographs and part of her collection of 1930’s memorabilia. And since it is a book birthday, there will be cake! 
Local appearances and launches include the following:
Saturday, February 6, at 2:00 p.m.

Everett Public Library Auditorium, 2702 Hoyt Avenue, Everett

Tuesday, February 9, 7 p.m.

Third Place Books, 17171 Bothell Way NE, Lake Forest Park, WA
A selection of the Junior Library Guild
Nancy Paulsen imprint of Penguin Books for Young Readers
Simultaneous release of audio from Listening Library, narrated by Susan Denaker

Gordon Korman this Wednesday

The prolific and popular GORDON KORMAN will be at Secret Garden Books this Wednesday, February 3 at 7pm! His appearance supports his new book, MASTERMINDS: CRIMINAL DESTINY.
Gordon Korman has written more than seventy middle-grade and teen novels, including the New York Times bestselling The 39 Clues: Cahills vs. Vespers Book One: The Medusa Plot; the Swindle series; Ungifted; the Island series, Pop; Schooled; No More Dead Dogs; Son of the Mob; and many other favorites. Gordon lives with his family on Long Island, New York.
 WHERE: Secret Garden Books
WHEN: Wednesday, February 3 at 7pm

February author/illustrator events!

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

GN = graphic novel

Feb 2, 7PM
Diana Renn, Blue Voyage (YA)

Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park

Feb 2, 7PM
Marissa Meyer, Stars Above, Lunar Chronicles  (YA)

University Bookstore, U-District

Feb 3, 7PM
Gordon Korman, Master Minds Criminal Destiny (MG)

Secret Garden Books

Feb 4, 7PM
Mick Szydlowski, Travis Bossard, Alex Novoseltsen, Oskar and Klaus, The Mission to Cataria (PB)

University Bookstore, Mill Creek

Feb 6, 2PM
Carole Estby Dagg,  Sweet Home Alaska  (MG)

U-District Sponsored at Everett Public Library 
2702 Hoyt Ave. Everett WA

Feb 6, 12PM
Rita Wirkala, The Encounter, (YA)

Seattle Public Library, Greenwood Branch

Feb 8, 7PM
Garth Stein, A Sudden Light (YA)

Sno Isle Library, Lynnwood branch

Feb 8, 7PM
David Joy and Ingrid Thoft, Where All Light Tends to Go (YA)

Elliot Bay Book Company

Feb 9, 7PM
Carole Estby Dagg, Home Sweet Alaska (MG)

Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park

Feb 11, 7PM
Pierce Brown, Morning Star  (YA)

University Bookstore, U-District

Feb 11, 6:30
Dana Simpson, Unicorn on a Roll, (MG-YA Graphic Novel)

Elliot Bay Book Company

Feb 18, 7PM
Amber J. Keyser, The V Word (YA)

University Bookstore, U-District

Feb 21, 3PM
Neil Shusterman and Eric Elfman, Hawkings Hallway (MG) 

University Bookstore, Bellevue

Feb 27, 6:30
Barbara Caridad Ferrer, Between Here and Gone (YA)

Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park

Call for instructors

The Continuing Education department at Green River College in Auburn, WA is looking for instructors to teach a “Writing for Children” class as well as “Illustrating Children’s Book” class.  Qualified writers and illustrators who might be interested can contact the program development manager for Continuing & Community Education, Sherrie Earl, at

Northern Network Meeting this WEDNESDAY!

Northern Network of Western Washington SCBWI

Special Guest Speaker!
MaryAnn Kohl: Agent, Author and Publisher
MaryAnn Kohl has done it all. From writing over 25 books, self-publishing and marketing, and now being an agent for non-fiction activity books for children, parents, and teachers, she is speaking about the agent’s role in facilitating your non-fiction project from proposal to sales. For those interested in self-publishing, she will talk about self-publishing vs. traditional publishing, especially as it applies to non-fiction. Come with your questions! Whatever your current writing and illustrating project is, it should be an informative evening!

Date: Wednesday, February 3, 2016
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Location: The Bellingham Barnes & Nobel (4099 Meridian Street)
Questions? Call Rebecca Van Slyke at (360) 354-5797, or email at [That’s rebecca(underscore)vanslyke(at)hotmail(dot)com.]

SCBWI Oregon spring conference registration

Our SCBWI sister to the south is holding their annual conference in May, and registration is now open! From the looks of things, it is going to be FABULOUS. Click HERE for all the details!

Faculty includes: Newbery Award winner Matt de la Pena, Newberry Honor Award winner Victoria Jamieson, our very own Kevan Atteberry, and many more stellar authors, illustrators, agents, editors, and special extras. 

What's a three-hour drive/train when you can partake in all this kidlit goodness? Get in on this while the getting is good!

Call for presenters!

Hey, y'all!

Do you have a fabulous idea that you could envision materializing as an informative, insightful, inspiring, and just plain mind-blowing presentation? We are currently opening the floodgates to applications for 2016-17's schedule of monthly programming and our 2017 regional conference.

Call for Conference Workshop Presenters and Monthly Meeting Presenters!

SCBWI Western Washington is seeking workshop presenters for our 2016-2017 year. Our chapter holds monthly meetings from October through April, and hosts an annual conference every other spring. We welcome fresh and compelling workshop ideas for any of these events!

Workshops may address topics relevant to potential attendees that include (but aren’t limited to) the craft of writing and illustrating for children, book marketing, or the latest industry trends.

As a presenter, you’re expected to share information and experience, but may not use our events as a platform for commercial sales, self-promotion, political discussions, or to criticize competitors or public figures.

Click here for full details and an application.

Deadline: May 1, 2016!