Monday, June 12, 2017

SCBWI Idaho Conference on Youth and Children's Literature and Writing


In April, I had the opportunity to attend the SCBWI Idaho Conference on Youth and Children’s Writing. It was a great day filled with many authors, writers, and an agent and editor.  I learned so much, and made many new friendships and connections.  It is always nice to have an entire day dedicated to my writing.  I always learn new things, and I always make new friendships. I love attending this conference every year.

For a good portion of the day, I attended an intensive with the Bonny Becker.  She is the author of the Mouse and Bear books. She taught us her secrets to writing a great picture book.  She spoke a lot about ideas, character, traits, basic elements of a story structure, endings, research, audience, framework, and revision.  I learned a lot from her intensive.  It was very informative and helpful.  I always enjoy getting other authors perspective on the industry.

I also heard from the author, Leslie Patricelli.  She is the author of many board books about opposites—Yummy Yucky, Big Little, and Quiet Loud.  She spoke a lot about her journey to publication.  It was very interesting to hear her story about how she got her first book published.  I enjoyed listening to her.

Also speaking at the conference was editor, Wendy McClure from Albert Whitman Company.  She spoke about what it means to dig deeper in our writing.  I really enjoyed her presentation.  It was informative and fun.

Lastly, I heard from literary agent, Michelle Witte.  She spoke about rhythm and rhyme in our manuscripts.  It was interesting to listen to.

All in all, I had a wonderful time at the conference.  I am glad that I went.  I love this industry, and I love that I can attend a conference that teaches me so much about it.  I also love making friendships with other writers and authors. It was a great day.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Motivation

I find it funny that my kids will never willingly pick up anything off the floor, but when the chocolate chip bag spilled all over the kitchen, each child jumped up immediately to help me. They couldn’t shove the chocolate in their mouths fast enough.  It made me laugh, and I had to take a picture.  Who knew that all I needed was a little chocolate to get them moving?

The characters in our stories are just like my kids.  They need the right motivation to get them going.  They need a little chocolate.  We as writers need to figure out the driving motivation behind our characters.  We need to know what drives them.  What excites them.  What gets them moving.  Motivation is important in stories.  It helps determine how the plot unfolds, and brings out conflict.  Without motivation, the story falls flat.

So it’s time to spill a little bit of chocolate on the floor, and see if you can find your character’s motivation.      

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Possibilities

It’s a brand new year with so many possibilities. I’m excited to see where 2017 will take me. I have many new writing goals, and I cannot wait to get started on them. With a lot of hard work, determination, and creativity, I know I can achieve these goals. 

I won’t stop writing.

I won’t stop learning.

And I won’t give up.

I’m going to make 2017 a great year, and I’m going to find as many possibilities as I can.