Welcome to the San Diego Region

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Hello and welcome to the San Diego chapter of SCBWI!

Whether you’re a newbie, a seasoned pro, or somewhere in between, we’re here to inspire and support you as creators of children’s books. And we do that by offering opportunities for professional development, critique and promotion of your work designed to improve your craft, share industry practices and connect you with publishing professionals. SCBWI-San Diego is committed to breaking down barriers and opening doors for anyone with a story to tell — whether by pen, by mouse or by brush.

You can find answers to most questions on your Member Home Page by clicking on the headings at the top of the page:

News Feed – This comes up automatically and shows you upcoming events throughout the organization.

Events – Here you will find any event you are registered to attend, and if it is a virtual event, you will find the Zoom link by clicking on Go to Event Homepage written in green beneath the title of the event.

Resources – This page will have the recordings of any virtual event you attended, as well as SCBWI’s archived Digital Workshops, and much more.

My Work – You can add any published work, book or art, by then clicking on Share Your Work.

Awards – All grants, contests and awards backed by SCBWI are listed here with dates of submission and a Submit Your Work green button for ease of submitting.

Below is an overview of some of what the San Diego Chapter offers:  

A bit of housekeeping

Please log in each time you access the SCBWI site as some features and resources are members-only. So, be sure to create a member profile and keep it current for promotional opportunities. Finally, please add our email addresses to your “safe senders” list so they’re not marked as spam.  

Important contacts

For questions about our SCBWI chapter or writer events, contact our regional advisor:

Debra Schmidt at sandiego-ra2@scbwi.org

Linda Gorsline at sandiego-ra@scbwi.org


For questions about illustrator events, contact our illustrator coordinator:

Katrin Azimi at sandiego-ic@scbwi.org

Lisa Karmel at sandiego-ic2@scbwi.org


For questions about links for events or to our newsletter, contact our assistant regional advisor:

Deborah Snyder at sandiego-ara@scbwi.org

Jennifer Haymore at sandiego-ara2@scbwi.org

Chapter events

We host monthly chapter meetings (you may need to hold down your ctrl key and click on the link) from September to April plus a conference in May. We meet online currently but hope to be in person again soon. Our events feature publishing professionals such as agents, editors and authors. We often have “intensives” — an experiential writing or illustrating workshop — prior to our meetings. And on the third Thursday of each month, we hold an illustrator meet-up. Sign up with Lisa Karmel at schmooze.sandiego.scbwi@gmail.com.

As a member, you’ll have discounts on all events. And if you buy a Season Ticket, you’ll save even more and receive some more membership perks. To find out more about these, go to our chapter home page.

Critique groups

For writers (all genres), please contact our writer critique group coordinator:

Susan Ranscht at stranscht@sbcglobal.net (for online meet-ups)


For illustrators, please contact our illustrator critique coordinators:

Lisa Karmel at schmooze.sandiego.scbwi@gmail.com

Katrin Azimi at draw.sandiego.scbwi@gmail.com

“Writing for Children 101” class

We offer a monthly two-hour writing class for beginners. “Writing for Children 101” runs from October to April and covers plotting, writing and submitting kidlit. It also includes monthly critiques and by the end of the program, participants should have a publisher-ready submission.

Writing for Children 101 On-line Class, Noon-2PM (PT) with RAE Patricia Morris Buckley – SCBWI

Already published?

Published members (whether in book form or periodicals) may join our PAL group. “Published and Listed” members meet three times per year for professional development, networking or social events. The group communicates via an online forum where members can ask questions, share info and celebrate successes. To learn if you qualify as a PAL member, click here. And for more info contact PAL coordinator, Virginia Loh-Hagan at PAL.sandiego.scbwi@gmail.com

SandCastle Legends

Keep an eye out for our monthly e-newsletter, SandCastle Legends. Published from September through May, it features publishing information, upcoming chapter events as well as members’ publishing achievements. And be sure to submit your own news — or even an article — by contacting Patricia Morris Buckley at patriciamorrisbuckley@gmail.com by the 20th of each month.

Connecting online

You may follow our chapter on Twitter and our member-only private Facebook group to connect with other members, be informed about SCBWI or industry events or share good news. Consider following national SCBWI too. And please keep your comments polite, positive and spam-free.

Need help with promotion? 

There are several spots published members can promote their books and events free of charge including the members SCBWI Bookstore and the Speaker’s Bureau (it is under construction).

Giving back

San Diego is one of the most active SCBWI chapters in the world and it takes many volunteers to create the opportunities that help boost the careers of our members. Even our regional advisors are volunteers and volunteering your talents, time and effort is a great way to “give back” to SCBWI as well as enjoy extra perks. Contact any of the regional team listed above to learn more.

Beyond the chapter

Explore the international site for more member benefits and resources such as access to SCBWI’s “THE BOOK” — a free publication on the children’s publishing industry including info on kidlit editors and agents. Or check out their blog, podcasts, and YouTube channel for conversations and events with industry professionals. For illustrators, find out how you can display your art at the Bologna Book Fair or on the SCBWI Illustrator Gallery. And be sure to check out the calendar of virtual workshops from other chapters around the world. To look for award-winning books and work by SCBWI Conference faculty go to the SCBWI bookshop.

Still have questions? 

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me wkitts.scbwi.sd.newmembercontact@gmail.com or any of the SCBWI-San Diego team members if you have any questions. And just a reminder to please communicate with respect. SCBWI does not tolerate violence or harassment. Also, team members are not obligated to respond to unsolicited emails and use of their contact info for solicitations is prohibited. Violation of this policy may result in termination of your membership. For more info, see our policies and code of conduct.


And please be on the lookout for an email from me inviting you to take part in a Zoom meet-up for new members in the near future.


Thank you for your time,


Wendy Kitts

New Member Coordinator