Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Speaker Profile - Mina Witteman

Translator and Writer

Region: International Central
Age Levels: 5-10, 11-13, and 14-17
Will Travel: Anywhere in the world
Skype Visit: Yes
SCBWI Profile: Member Profile


An author, editor, creative writing teacher, Mina Witteman writes in English and Dutch. She has seven middle grade novels out in the Netherlands, over 40 short stories, and a Little Golden Book

Her middle grade series tells the story of twelve-year-old Boreas, who circumnavigates the world with his parents on a sailboat. The first book, Boreas en de zeven zee├źn (Boreas and the Seven Seas), 2015, received raving reviews and was longlisted for the Kinderjury. Boreas en de duizend eilanden (Boreas and the Thousand Islands), 2016, was equally praised, just like Boreas en de vier windstreken (Boreas and the Four Winds), 2017. Book 4, Boreas en de vijftien vrienden (Boreas and the Fifteen Friends), 2018, is longlisted for the Jonge Jury Prijs, the annual Young Jury Award. 

She debuted in 2005 with De wraak van Deedee (Deedee's Revenge), a middle grade novel with Van Goor Children's Books, followed by two more middle grade novels, before she transferred to Ploegsma Children's Books. 

Witteman has over 40 short stories published in magazines and anthologies, most notably a series of 21 short stories for Bobo with the illustrations of the illustrious Fiep Westendorp. She has a Dutch Little Golden Book to her name: Mia's Nest, 2014. The Spanish translation, El nido de Mia, 2016, was published by Panamericana.  

Witteman is a seasoned book editor and an certified teacher creative writing. She teaches and coaches budding and published writers alike. She was Chairman of the Working Group Children's Books of the Dutch Authors Guild and the Regional Advisor for SCBWI the Netherlands. She is founding member of the successful SCBWI Europolitan Conferences. Witteman is member of the EU Planning Committee of the SCBWI British Isles' Undiscovered Voices Competition for unagented and unpublished writers and illustrators and a nominating body for the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award. 

Currently, she is SCBWI's International Published Authors' Coordinator and the Program Associate Children and Young Adults for the Bay Area Book Festival. With lives in Berkeley, California.

Presentation Description:
Being a writer as well as a creative writing teacher and an independent editor, I offer hands-on writing workshops for children and young adults. Depending on available time - from one time two hours to eight weekly sessions of two hours - we discuss reading and writing, we brainstorm about story ideas and we get to work. With younger children we try to finish a short story, with older children and young adults I might go deeper into a specific writing technique, like building a character or a setting, structuring a plot, or the ins and outs of point of view. At the end of the session(s) children and young adults will have a basic knowledge of what it entails to be a writer and how it feels to be in charge of your own story.