SCBWI's Blueboard - A Message & Chat Board

Tips for Going to a Conference

Discussion started on

Very timely for me--I'm going to my first conference at the end of April (I get to meet Donna J!).  Thanks for all the advice,  I'm bookmarking this page for sure.
#31 - March 27, 2008, 02:23 PM
http://stephanielreed.com

"If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes." Mark 9:23

#32 - April 10, 2008, 10:07 AM
www.jillcorcoran.blogspot.com & www.hermanagencyinc.com
DARE TO DREAM...CHANGE THE WORLD, Kane Miller, Fall 2012

Hi everyone, I'm new to children's writing. I'm working on the ICL course right now. I'd love to attend a children's writers conference in the upcoming year. Does anyone have recommendations for a newbie? I'm mostly looking for education, encouragement, and inspiration. I don't have a manuscript I'm trying to shop (yet!). Thanks for any and all insights. BTW I'm in NY so would like something i could drive to NY, NJ, PA, CT.
#33 - August 12, 2008, 11:50 AM
Twitter: @ KarenBlyToo

Emeritus
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region newengland
The New England SCBWI conference, held in April in Nashua, NH, might be a possibility for you--it's big, but very friendly.  New Jersey's is another to consider--smaller, but closer to you.

Have fun choosing!
#34 - August 12, 2008, 11:54 AM
The Leland Sisters series: Courtship and Curses, Bewitching Season, Betraying Season (Holt BYR/Macmillan)
www.marissadoyle.com
www.nineteenteen.com

jeanne k

Guest
My first conference was NJ SCBWI in 2007. it was really good. I did find myself inspired. I believe the annual conferences are in the summer. The chapter has other workshops throughout the year as well that look great, although I've never been to any.

I haven't been to any other conferences, yet.
#35 - August 12, 2008, 12:13 PM

Member.
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region newjersey
NJ may be small, but we're mighty (not to mention friendly). Last year our faculty provided 180 one-on-one critiques for attendees. We had 20 agents, editors, and art directors plus the fabulous Eileen and Jerry Spinelli.

We're just starting to recruit faculty for our June 5/6, 2009 conference. So far we have:
Richard Peck - Newbery Award Winning Author
Steve Meltzer - editor Dial & Dutton
Michelle Poploff - editor Random House

We also offer many other events during the year. Check us out at http://www.newjerseyscbwi.com/allevents.shtml.  Laurie
#36 - August 12, 2008, 12:17 PM
« Last Edit: August 13, 2008, 06:20 PM by lauriew »
Laurie Wallmark
lauriewallmark.com
Grace Hopper: Queen of Computer Code (Sterling 2017)
Ada Byron Lovelace and the Thinking Machine
(Creston 2015)

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Region epa
Take a look at the SCBWI website and see what's coming up.  The New England conference is in April, NJ is in June, and I'm not sure about NY, I think they have a couple chapters. SE PA is coming up in Sept.   If you aren't ready to submit, though, consider the focus of the conference.  Some of the NJ events (which I love) are focused on getting critiques and meeting editors and agents.  If you are looking for education and don't have a manuscript yet, they might not be the best choice.

There's also a conference at Hofstra in NY in May or June, which you could look into.  I think it has a lot of "how-to" type workshops, though I've never been.  And there's the national SCbWI in Feb in NYC, but it's mostly focused on meeting editors and agents, not much education. 

From what you've said, I would take a look at the SE PA or the New England conferences, for a first conference. (New England is bigger and longer)  But keep the others (esp NJ) in mind.  They all have their own focus, and there are plenty to choose from. 

anita
#37 - August 12, 2008, 12:44 PM

Admins and Mods Emeriti
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region midatlantic
This is a little farther, but it's an easy train ride (and given gas prices, it might be cheaper to take the train).  If you want to do something sooner than all the (great) conferences listed above, the Mid-Atlantic SCBWI is right outside DC in Arlington, VA the last weekend of October.  It's a nice first conference because it's only one day and it's not too huge (about 200 attendees).

AM
#38 - August 12, 2008, 01:13 PM
BUSY-EYED DAY (Beach Lane Books, 2018)
GROUNDHUG DAY (Disney-Hyperion, 2017)
VAMPIRINA AT THE BEACH (Disney-Hyperion, 2017)
among others

Global Moderator
Poster Plus
  • ***
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Region westcentny
I'm in western NY and drove to Philly for the Fall Philly Conference last year (in Sept).  It was fabulous!  There are also smaller ones in NY depending on region.  THere will be a winter con in Syracuse this January!
#39 - August 12, 2008, 01:21 PM
BLACKOUT -- available now
DESERTED -- available now
SISTERS DON'T TELL -- available now
www.deenalipomi.com

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region germanyaustria
  • SCBWI Regional Moderator
I've been to the SCBWI Mid-winter conf in NY 2x (and also attended the writers intensive the first year they offered it)

It was a wonderful experience!

#40 - August 12, 2008, 02:07 PM
The Safest Lie in stores now
The End of the Line - VOYA Top Shelf & YALSA Quick Pick
www.angelacerrito.com
FB/twtr/Tmblr AngelaCerrito

wow, lots of great recommendations, thanks everyone! Now to whittle them down. There's cost, travel time, and my impatience to get to one and get inspired! I think I'll try one of the regional conferences so I don't feel too lost, I like small and friendly.
#41 - August 12, 2008, 03:02 PM
Twitter: @ KarenBlyToo

SuzyWilliams

Guest
Karen - regional SCBWI conferences are a great choice for a first conference. You can see most of the events at www.scbwi.org go to Regions and click on Events. They are listed by month, not Region, but you can look at the upcoming events - and it should help you find one soon so you don't have to wait too long. Remember, you are welcome at SCBWI events in ANY region. We always love out of region people at our Nevada events and they come from as far away as NY, FL, VA, IL, Eastern Canada. I'm sure you'll find something special close to home. If you have questions, contact the RA and she/he will help. Good luck, SuzyW
#42 - August 12, 2008, 03:36 PM

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
Karen- If you are willing to wait until the summer, I highly recommend the Highlights Foundation Workshop in Chautauqua, NY. The event is limited to about 100 participants and meet your requirements for "education, encouragement, and inspiration." The week is full of practical advice and wonderful support for beginning writers. You also have the opportunity to meet editors and numerous published writers. For many, it is a life changing experience.
#43 - August 12, 2008, 04:54 PM

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Moderator
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI RA
  • SCBWI Region florida
If you get tired of the cold, come on down to Miami January 16-18 when we have our SCBWI Florida Regional Conference. Our confirmed speakers are Linda Sue Park, Lisa Yee, Ginger Knowlton, Elaine Landau, and Alexandra Cooper. I'm still in the process of confirming a couple more speakers.

The conference will be $225 and we usually have about 150-180 people so it's nice and small. The best thing is that there are plenty of flights to and from New York to Miami. We do a field trip to downtown Coral Gables Friday night to visit Books and Books, our large independent bookstore for a nightime reception in their courtyard. Our conference features hands on workshops, the ability to see all the speakers, first page critiques and paid critiques.

You can get more information at www.scbwiflorida.com. Information should be going up by mid-September.

LindaB
#44 - August 12, 2008, 07:18 PM

The Highlights conference does look lovely but it's a week long, which would be hard on my little ones. Plus it's a bit pricey. Maybe someday...
#45 - August 12, 2008, 07:29 PM
Twitter: @ KarenBlyToo

df

Guest
I'll echo that NE is a great conference, although it isn't small (but smaller than NY!). I think that Cynthia Lord is giving one of the keynotes next year.
Debbie
#46 - August 13, 2008, 02:54 PM

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Region epa
Hi everyone, I'm new to children's writing. I'm working on the ICL course right now. I'd love to attend a children's writers conference in the upcoming year. Does anyone have recommendations for a newbie? I'm mostly looking for education, encouragement, and inspiration. I don't have a manuscript I'm trying to shop (yet!). Thanks for any and all insights. BTW I'm in NY so would like something i could drive to NY, NJ, PA, CT.

I think that the key here is that you want "education, encouragement and inspiration".  If that's the case and you don't have a manuscript, then carefully evaluate the topics for the workshops.  Some conferences (like the national SCBWI in NY) focus mostly on meeting editors, hearing about the editors and their houses. Others are more focused on how to write type workshops.   

anita
#47 - August 13, 2008, 03:33 PM

taradawn

Guest
There's every reason to start off small, especially when the NJ-SCBWI offers regular first page critiques. They're inexpensive (great value for the advice given), only 2-3 hours (4 hours if you stick around for dinner, highly recommended) and chock full of excellent information. I've made connections with other writers and learned a lot. The next one is in September--go ahead and sign up and I'll see you there!
#48 - August 14, 2008, 08:48 AM
« Last Edit: August 18, 2008, 01:52 PM by taradawn »

I don't have a specific conference recommendation since I live on the other coast,
but one thing I wish I would've known when I was choosing my first conference is
the difference between a sell-your-ms conference and a craft conference. One of
the regional conferences near me doesn't usually have big names and mostly authors,
but it's one of the best I've attended because the focus is on learning the craft.
It took me awhile to discover it, because I thought I should attend "big name" conferences, but I'm so glad I did!
Also, closer to your home is best, so that you can keep in touch with your new writer friends!
#49 - August 14, 2008, 11:52 AM
twitter.com/enzor_jenni
jennienzor.blogspot.com

austen, that makes a lot of sense. i'll keep that in mind. thanks!
#50 - August 14, 2008, 01:40 PM
Twitter: @ KarenBlyToo

Poster Plus
  • ***
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Region intlcentral
Thank you all for the fabulous tips! Hugs! :)
#51 - September 02, 2015, 02:42 PM

Members:

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.