Book To The Future: SCBWI WWA Annual Conference

The Western Washington chapter of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators has recently opened registration for their annual conference that takes place this year on April 16th and 17th in Redmond Washington. I have attended the conference every year (save last year when I was already living in Malaysia) and can't recommend the conference highly enough for writers, illustrators, or even teachers or librarians passionate about children's literature. This year's conference sounds like it has great speakers lined up: 5 editors, 4 agents, an art director and some fabulous key note speakers including author Holly Black, author Emily Jenkins E. Lockhart, author/illustrator Dan Santat, and author Deborah Wiles.

Also, one of my favortite things offered at the Western Washington conference, something not offered at most other conferences, is the dummy critique. So often writer/illustrators aren't given the chance to have dummies critiqued by industry pros at these conferences and it's a shame! Dummies are a lot of work; making them and critiquing them has helped me develop my own visual storytelling skills more than any other task. So I love that SCBWI WWA offers the rare chance to have have a dummy critiqued. Also for illustrators, there's a cool portfolio show with prizes. So, I think, the conference is an especially great opportunity for illustrators.

In fact, I think highly enough of the conference that I had decided last year that this was going to be the one conference I trekked over the ocean to attend this year -- I think the conference is that good. Alas though, it turns out I had to make a very hard choice. My 10th wedding anniversary is on the 14th of April, and I decided I'd probably regret not celebrating with my hubby (we are planning something really cool so I won't be bummed I missed the conference). So, if you go, take notes! Share a few tidbits! I'll enjoy reading about your learning from afar.