Conference FAQ and Policies
How can I make a change to my reservation?
Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, message us by clicking the green “Help” icon on our website, or call (323) 782-1010 to reach a SCBWI representative.
The consultant I want to review my manuscript or portfolio is sold out. Can I get on their waitlist?
We are not able to hold waitlists for individual consultants. However, once all the consultations have sold out, we will open a general waitlist. If we receive a cancellation, then attendees on the general waitlist will be offered the open spot.
The Creative Lab I want is sold out. Can I get on a waitlist?
We are not able to hold waitlists for Creative Labs. If your first choice is sold out, then you’ll need to select one that is open. Fortunately, there are many great options to choose from.
What should I wear?
Wear whatever you’d like but wear something you’d feel comfortable in if you have the opportunity to say hello to an editor or agent.
It is also good to dress in layers. You never know if the hotel’s conference room will be too hot, too cold, or just right (and it’s different for every body and every room).
What options are available for food––especially during conference hours––and what should we expect as far as prices go?
The hotel has two lounges where you can order food, and an on-site coffee shop that offers grab-and-go meals and beverages. Additionally, you’ll find numerous dining options within a short walking distance of the hotel. Also, don’t forget there will be a buffet during the Saturday night networking dinner.
I have been told that I probably won’t get a contract from the get-go, but I want to get the most out of the conference. This is my dream.
Work your way through the event with realistic goals. Conferences are a chance to learn more about the industry, improve your craft, and create connections that can lead you down the path toward success. We also suggest that you download and read The Essential Guide to Publishing for Children, a free resource for SCBWI member that you can find HERE.
What is a good ice-breaker when approaching an agent or editor? Are there any pointers on asking if you can send them a query letter?
Our advice would be to focus on learning about the editors and agents while at the conference, and then only submit to those who seem to be a good fit for you and your work after (and only if your work is ready). If you do get the chance to speak with an editor or agent, there’s no need to tell them about your work (unless they ask), instead ask them questions that give you more insight into their personal interests and tastes. It’s highly likely the conversation will turn to your work.
Work on answering these two questions in one sentence each: 1) What do you do? 2) What are you working on?
How is pitching to agents/editors handled at this conference? Is there any formalized time during the conference to meet with agents/editors or do we just do hallway/elevator pitching?
There are no formal pitching sessions. Please do not pitch to the editors or agents in the hallways, at lunch, between sessions, in the elevator, or anywhere in between. As mentioned in the previous answer, editors and agents greatly appreciate questions that allow you (and others) to get to know them and their house/agency better so that you can submit to or query them once the conference is over if they are a potential fit.
Is there any way to know when my consultation is scheduled prior to the beginning day of the conference? What should I bring with me to the consultation?
You’ll receive your consultation information (consultant, day, and time) in an email a week before the conference. Please check your spam folder if you don’t see it.
What should I bring to the conference? If I have materials (stories, etc.) completed, should I bring copies?
The only work-related materials you should bring will be for your own use. Make sure you read the syllabus of your intensive carefully, as it will list what you need to bring with you. If you’re having a consultation, as mentioned above, bring an extra copy of your work to take notes on while you listen to the feedback you are receiving. The conference is not the place to pass on your work to an editor or agent. Many of them will ask to see attendee work, but they will not want it then and there. They will want it to be submitted formally, according to their guidelines.
You might consider bringing business cards. If one of your goals is to network with other writers and illustrators attending the conference, sharing your card and collecting them from others is a great way to do so.
I’m an illustrator, can I bring postcards?
Postcards and business cards are great things for illustrators to bring and fun to exchange with fellow conference attendees. If you would also like to bring your portfolio, there are informal opportunities like the Illustrators’ social for sharing your portfolio with other attendees.
What should I bring to my intensive?
Bring a laptop and/or writing implements. Each intensive’s syllabus includes a list of what attendees should bring with them, i.e. a first chapter of a novel, art supplies, etc.
By signing up for this conference you agree to all of the policies below.
Conference Cancellation/Refund Policy:
Cancellations are accepted in writing only via email to Danielle Monique at email@example.com,
On or before January 19 – Full refund for general tuition less a $75 Administrative Fee
After January 19 – 50% of Paid Regular Tuition
We are unable to give refunds for consultations or the portfolio showcase.
No refunds under any circumstances for weather related cancellations.
Acknowledgement of Safety Policies
Due to the uncertainty related to the COVID-19 pandemic, your registration and admission are subject to all venue and organization safety and health policies, which include the Participation Promise and COVID-19 Daily Screening Questionnaire set forth below. You acknowledge that due to the evolving nature of the pandemic, the organization may continue to develop and update these policies in the intervening time between your registration and the Event date. By registering, accepting and/or using Event registration, you acknowledge and agree that you will comply with such policies and your attendance at the Event is conditioned on such compliance. If your admission to the Event is denied or revoked because you have willfully failed or refused to comply with any such safety and health policies of the venue organization, you will not be eligible for participation, a credit, or a refund.
You agree, on behalf of yourself and on behalf of any other person for whom you are obtaining this registration, that you will not attend the Event if, under the CDC’s guidelines in effect at the time of the Event, it is recommended that, as of the date of the Event, you stay at home, quarantine and/or isolate (e.g., as a result of your testing positive, developing symptoms, or having a direct exposure to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19). For reference, the CDC’s current recommendations are available here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/your-health/quarantine-isolation.html
In addition, you acknowledge and agree, on behalf of yourself and on behalf of any other person for whom you are obtaining this registration, that you will perform daily COVID-19 screening each morning of the event by 8:00 a.m. and will be prepared to submit proof of screening if requested to do so by the venue or the organization. The COVID-19 daily screening questionnaire is available below for reference.
All participants to the Event with symptoms of COVID-19 should not enter or participate in the Event. Further, all participants must comply with Safety Policies, health guidance, and signage at the Event, including wearing a high quality mask (for example, an N95, KN95, KF94, or well-fitting surgical mask) while at the Event.
Daily Screening Questionnaire
- Do you have any of these symptoms that are not caused by another condition?
– Fever or chills
– Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
– Muscle or body aches
– Recent loss of taste or smell
– Sore throat
– Nausea or vomiting
- If you are not fully vaccinated, have you been in close contact with anyone with COVID19 in the past 14 days?
Close contact is being within 6 feet for 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period with a person; or having direct contact with fluids from a person with COVID-19 with or without wearing a mask (i.e., being coughed or sneezed on).
- Have you had a positive COVID-19 test for active virus in the past 10 days, or are you awaiting results of a COVID-19 test?
- Within the past 14 days, has a public health or medical professional told you to self-monitor, self-isolate, or self-quarantine because of concerns about COVID-19 infection?
Participants answering YES to any of the above questions will not be permitted access to the Event.
Blogging & Recording Policy:
By registering for this conference, you acknowledge that audio taping, video-taping and/or transmitting or aiding in any of the foregoing of any part of the conference (including, but not limited to, presentations, individual sessions, and networking events) is prohibited. Additionally, the material in all handouts and presentations is copyrighted and may not be reprinted, blogged, written, orally transmitted, and/or reproduced without written permission of the copyright holder only. If you are found in violation of the above, SCBWI reserves the right to remove you from the conference and bar you from attending future conferences.
While we love when bloggers share thoughts about their overall experience, offer a personal anecdote, and/or briefly talk about something that resonated with them, it is equally important that bloggers not give away that which is not theirs to give. The fair use policy issued by SCBWI above refers to speakers’ rights, authors’ rights, and illustrators’ rights, under any circumstances, and it pertains to the content of our speakers’ talks, workshops, and/or handouts. This falls into the category of protecting intellectual property. Again, personal impressions, a quote that is cited, and/or a general overview would be considerate. However, it would be a breach of copyright law to give away a detailed report of a presenter’s material. Thank you in advance for taking this policy into account. Your professionalism is greatly appreciated.
Attendance at this event constitutes permission for your photograph or video to be taken at the event and used for SCBWI purposes.
While we make every attempt to accommodate food sensitivities, please understand that we cannot ensure every single participant’s dietary preferences and food sensitivities for every meal. We ask that if you have serious allergies/sensitivities or strict food preferences that you please bring supplementary food with you.
Other Terms and Conditions:
Please note that while speakers and topics were confirmed at the time of posting the conference, circumstances beyond the control of the organizers may necessitate substitutions, alterations or cancellations of the speakers and/or topics. As such, SCBWI reserves the right to alter or modify the advertised speakers and/or topics if necessary, without liability and no cancellations are allowed if these circumstances arise. Any substitutions or alterations will be updated on our web page as soon as possible. SCBWI is not responsible for any loss or damage as a result of a substitution, alteration or cancellation/postponement of an event. SCBWI shall assume no liability whatsoever in the event this conference is cancelled, rescheduled or postponed due to a fortuitous event, Act of God, unforeseen occurrence or any other event that renders performance of this conference impracticable, illegal or impossible. For purposes of this clause, a fortuitous event shall include, but not be limited to: war, fire, labor strike, extreme weather or other emergency.
SCBWI does not allow anyone under the age of eighteen to attend an SCBWI event. There are no exceptions to this policy.
SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy:
The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) is dedicated to providing a safe and harassment-free environment for all of its members and will take any and all necessary steps to address and prevent harassment at events associated with SCBWI. Harassment under this policy may include verbal comments, written comments, displayed images, or behaviors such as intimidation, stalking, body policing, unwelcome photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, unwelcome sexual attention or advances, and bullying or coercion.
The SCBWI Member Anti-Harassment Policy applies to all situations of harassment or intimidation at any SCBWI Event. An “SCBWI Event” is any event, meeting or activity that is authorized by an SCBWI Regional Manager to be sponsored by, or affiliated with, SCBWI. SCBWI events may include, if properly authorized by an SCBWI Regional Manager, the Annual Summer Conference in Los Angeles, the Annual Winter Conference in New York, regional conferences, meetings and meet-ups. This SCBWI Member Anti-Harassment Policy also applies to “SCBWI On-Line Interactions,” which include communications and content posted on, or directed towards, SCBWI’s Social Media accounts or sent through any of the communication tools available on SCBWI’s website, www.scbwi.org. SCBWI’s Social Media accounts under this policy include the official SCBWI accounts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and LinkedIn.
Code of Conduct
All participants in SCBWI Events and SCBWI On-Line Interactions, including faculty, staff, and attendees, are required to comply with the following anti-harassment code of conduct. The SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy prohibits harassment, including but not limited to the following behaviors:
-intimidation, stalking, or following.
-Sustained disruption of talks or other events.
-Inappropriate physical contact.
-Unwelcome sexual attention.
-Abusive verbal comments.
-Quid pro quo– sexual harassment that occurs when one in an authority position requests sex or a sexual relationship in exchange for professional consideration or favors.
-Harassment does not include respectful disagreement or reasonable and respectful critique made in good faith. SCBWI continues to welcome and appreciate presentation of appropriate controversial ideas, free speech, and creative artistic expression. SCBWI encourages members to hold one another accountable to the Code of Conduct as stated in this part of the Policy and to take the perspectives of others seriously when a disagreement arises.
Any person who believes there has been a violation of the SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy can report the offense in one or all of the following ways:
-Certain SCBWI Events, including the Annual Summer Conference in Los Angeles and the Annual Winter Conference in New York, will designate one or more Safety Team Members who will be available during the conference to provide a safe space for members to report an incident. The Safety Team Member will report directly to the conference director or regional advisor in charge.
-A complainant may submit a complaint under this policy to the Director of Community Marketing and Engagement, the Director of Illustration and Artist Programs and/or your Regional Manager.
-SCBWI has a dedicated email address for reporting any potential incident of harassment under this policy. Anyone who chooses to report an incident can find the Anti-Harassment Report Form on the SCBWI website (About > Anti-Harassment) or use the following link: https://www.scbwi.org/anti-harassment-report-form/. Reports should include the substance of the complaint, date, and whenever possible, a list of witnesses or a reference to the relevant URLs, if the offense occurred through an SCWBI On-Line Interaction.
SCBWI will investigate all complaints subject to the SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy. If the policy applies, SCBWI will investigate the matter and take whatever action is necessary and appropriate to prevent a recurrence and protect the environment at SCWBI Events. If a complaint is made anonymously, please note that SCBWI will not be able to follow up on an anonymous report with the complainant directly, as SCBWI will not have contact information for the anonymous complainant. Moreover, anonymous complaints may hinder SCBWI’s ability to investigate the complaint. SCBWI will take steps to protect the confidentiality of the complaint, to the extent possible. However, complete confidentiality may not be possible in all circumstances. SCBWI will make every attempt to respond to a named complainant in a timely fashion.
If appropriate, SCBWI may report the incident to local authorities.
The SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy prohibits retaliation against a member of the SCBWI community for reporting harassment, intimidation or discrimination, or for participating in an investigation relating to any complaint made under this policy. The sanctions for retaliation are the same sanctions available to address any other violation of the SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy.
SCBWI takes all allegations of harassment seriously. Complaints will be investigated by SCWBI if they fall within the scope of SCWBI’s Anti-Harassment Policy. Depending on the results of the investigation, SCWBI will determine whether a sanction is appropriate.
Sanctions for faculty, speakers, staff or board members may include any of the following:
-warning the party involved that the particular behavior is inappropriate and must be ceased;
-immediate removal from a particular event;
-denial of access to SCBWI spaces and venues on a temporary or permanent basis;
-withholding of a contracted honorarium;
-prohibition from future speaking engagements;
-prohibition from future faculty appointments;
-expulsion from SCBWI; and/or
-removal from the Board of Advisors or Board of Directors, when appropriate.
Sanctions for attendees, members, and guests can include any of the following:
-warning the party involved that specified behavior is inappropriate and must be ceased;
-immediate removal from a particular event, without refund;
-denial of access to SCBWI spaces and venues on a permanent or temporary basis;
-termination of SCBWI membership, without refund; and/or
-prohibition of future SCBWI membership.
If the conduct at issue involves one of SCBWI’s employees, SCBWI will handle utilize whatever corrective action is appropriate based on the result of the investigation and subject to SCBWI employment policies and practices.
SCBWI will make every reasonable effort to conduct all investigations into allegations of harassment, intimidation, or discrimination in a manner that will protect the confidentiality of all parties and witnesses. Notwithstanding the above, confidentiality is not absolute, and those with a legitimate business reason to know and be informed of the allegations will be so informed. Parties to the complaint should treat the matter under investigation with discretion and respect the reputation of all parties involved.
If you wish to file a complaint or an anonymous complaint, CLICK HERE to access the Anti-harassment Report Form. If you have questions regarding this policy, go the SCBWI.org homepage and click on the green HELP button in the lower right corner and complete the form.