Saturday, June 8, 2013

2013 SCBWI Conference Day 1

It's my fourth year attending the NJSCBWI. Here's a run down of how my first three years went. Me hiding in a corner afraid to socialize. My writing should speak for itself, right? Not quite. My #1 goal this year, above continuing to work on my craft, was to network. It's the name of the game!

Conferences like these are an open door to make connections with all levels of folks in the industry; unpublished writers, published writers, agents, editors, illustrators, librarians and the list goes on and on.

Day one of the conference has come and gone. I had a one-on-one with Janine Hauber of the Sheldon Fogelman Agency. She gave me a full TYPED page of notes on my picture book, THAT'S IT, I QUIT! Any writer knows that a full page from an agent is like a goldmine! So I was very thankful for that and all of her constructive feedback.

Later on in the evening was the Mix & Mingle--also known as an excuse for the writing community to get together share an appetizer, a drink and a laugh! And boy did I have a great time at that event! I sat with a group of wonderful ladies from a critique group from Connecticut. We were then joined by Tricia Lawrence from the Erin Murphy Literary Agency. I have to admit that when she first showed up to our chat circle, I thought she was another writer. By this point, I had already let my guard down. When she said she was an agent, the (shy) writer in me tensed up. But that only lasted for a second. Tricia turned out to be the most welcoming, down to earth agents I've ever come across. By the end of the night, I almost didn't want to leave.

So here it is. Year four of my attendance at this conference and I think I'm finally finding my mojo...finally. I'm learning that this writing thing is so much more than what you put on the paper. It's about the connections that you establish while in the process.

So hats off to day one and onward to day two! More to come!


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