Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Prairie Writer's Day 2010

Ahhh...This past Saturday was the SCBWI-Illinois 2010 Prairie Writer's Day at Harper College.  It was fantastic!  I am so grateful for the opportunity to spend the day with my fellow writing pals and to learn from such an amazing line-up of editors and agents.  This was definitely my favorite PWD yet and I've been attending for many years. 

The fabulous speakers included:  Andrea Welch, Editor (Beach Lane Books), Marilyn Brigham, Editor (Marshall Cavendish Children's Books), Katherine Jacobs, Associate Editor (Roaring Brook Press), Tamra Tuller, Editor (Philomel Books Hothouse), Jennifer Mattson, Associate Agent (Andrea Brown Literary) and Edward Necarsulmer, Director of the Children's Department (McIntosh & Otis).  There were also breakout sessions by:  Janice Del Negro, Author, Professor and Reviewer, Michelle Bayuk, Director of Marketing (Albert Whitman & Co.), Meg Moss, Contributing Editor for ASK/Muse magazines and Tori Telfer with Cricket Magazine Group.   I left inspired and motivated.  Oh, I wish it would come more than once a year.  Heartfelt thanks go out to the tremendous planning committee.  All of your efforts are so appreciated.  Already looking forward to the next one. 

Writing is such a solitary job and it can take years to reap the rewards of your efforts.  Attending functions like this remind you that you are not alone in this endeavor.  And helps to refocus all of us on why we do this.  When I speak to children about writing, I always tell them about how much books meant to me growing up.  I always loved that feeling of being taken away to another place and was in awe when writers like Judy Blume could write something that described exactly how I was feeling.  How did they do that?  I was hooked way back then and still am now.  I loved that feeling as a child and hope that I can help kids to feel that way with my stories. 
That would be a dream come true!


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