WIK 2013 Blog Tour: Meet Author, Poet, Artist Robyn Hood Black

WIK 2013 Blog Tour: Meet Author, Poet, Artist Robyn Hood Black

Welcome to the 2013 WIK Blog Tour. I’m honored today to share a recent conversation with writer, poet and artist Robyn Hood Black. Robyn is a member of the outstanding faculty for the 2013 Writing and Illustrating for Kids (WIK) conference, which will take place October 12, 2013, in Birmingham, AL. Michelle Poploff, who edited my children’s middle grade novel, Gone From These Woods, is another member of the faculty, along with Lou Anders, Doraine Bennett, Amanda Cockrell, Heather Montgomery, Nancy Raines Day, Jennifer Echols, Dianne Hamilton, Janice Hardy, Sarah Frances Hardy, Sally Apokedak, and Chris Rumble. Be sure to check out the end of this post for links to each stop on the tour.

WIK is one of the best places to get inspired, gather tips on the craft of writing, and to learn about the business of publishing fiction and nonfiction for children. The conference also offers an opportunity to meet editors, agents, and an incredibly supportive network of working writers and artists. This annual conference is hosted by the Southern Breeze region of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and llustrators (SCBWI). To find out more or to register, visit https://southern-breeze.net/

Now, here’s my conversation with WIK 2013 faculty member Robyn Hood Black.

D: Welcome to my blog, Robyn. Tell me how you became a writer, poet and artist. What/who were your early influences — the people and experiences that led you to your present career?

R: Thanks so much for having me on your blog today, Donny!  Great question.

I was blessed to come from a family which highly valued creativity.  My mom spent endless hours nurturing whatever projects my brother, Mike, and I wanted to make.  For me these included entire villages of pipe-cleaner people with handmade clothes, or paintings, or countless “books” and cards.  My father was very creative and praised originality.  Imagination was always encouraged, and books and music and art were readily available.

D: You have a business called artsyletters. Tell me more about this. Is it all online or do you also do shows and festivals?

R: My artsyletters business is turning a year old!  Nowadays I guess I’d be called an “artist entrepreneur” – there’s a strong “makers” movement out there for creative folks with a bit of a business bent.  But I remember my mom taking me around to local gift shops when I was a kid to sell my little painted birds (stones) affixed to shellacked pieces of pine bark!  And I did some art shows and such in my life B. C. (Before Children).

Now I create “literary art with a vintage vibe” – note cards, bookmarks, collages, altered books, some calligraphy – my favorite media include printmaking, pen and ink, and mixed media with all kinds of vintage treasures (including stuff I pick up off the ground…).  If it’s rusty or dusty and especially if it has writing on it, it’s probably not safe around me.  I sell my work online through my Etsy shop – https://www.etsy.com/shop/artsyletters – and also at art shows and book festivals.  I’ll have a booth at the Decatur Book Festival in Atlanta this weekend!

D: Robyn, how do you balance writing and art? Do you consider these separate parts of your creative life?

R: Still working on the balance… and I’ve never been able to completely abandon one for the other. I remember struggling in college at Furman about whether to major in English or Art.  I picked English, and I do consider myself a writer first.  Now  that I’m also making and selling art which celebrates reading and writing, I couldn’t be happier.  At my first art show last year, a college English teacher bought bookmarks to give to her school’s first class of English majors (a rare declaration these days – sigh.).  This week I had two Etsy sales– one from a West Coast poet, and one from a history professor in the Midwest. I feel honored to be reaching a literary target market with my art!

D: I first met you at a SCBWI conference and I know you’ve been heavily involved in coordinating conferences for the Southern Breeze Region for many years. How have your experiences attending, planning and coordinating conferences helped you as a writer?

R: I could never say enough good things about getting involved in SCBWI and volunteering. What an amazing, talented, knowledgeable, generous group of folks. It’s important to spend time with your “tribe,” to interrupt the busy days of your life to do that. My years coordinating conferences gave me confidence dealing with all kinds of publishing professionals, as well as offering helpful peeks inside the industry.  Also, I absolutely treasure the life-long friends I’ve met through Southern Breeze.

D: You’ve published books for children and also write for magazines and a blog. Which format is harder/more challenging? Which do you prefer?

R: Tough one. Books have been the biggest thrill (and though it’s been a while, I still have ambitions for more books
with my name on the spine!), but I love writing for periodicals and anthologies, too.  I started actively blogging on Poetry Friday each week a few years ago on my author blog, http://www.robynhoodblack.com/blog, and that’s been a wonderful way to connect with other poets as well as teachers, librarians, and poetry enthusiasts.  It’s offered an outlet to interview some amazing folks as well as occasionally share my own writing.  I started my (weekly for now) art blog http://artsyletters.com a year ago.  No lie – two blogs, even if posting just once or twice a week, is work. I just took a little hiatus in August – we were busy getting both kids settled into colleges in different states and my husband settled in a new job.  But I look forward to getting back in the swing of those blog deadlines and to connecting with folks from around the world who share similar passions.

D:  I once read that for a prose writer, studying poetry is like a football player studying ballet. (Sounds like I could use a little poetry makeover in that last sentence!) Can you give workshop attendees an idea of what they might learn at your wik13 workshop, “Poetry Tips for Prose Writers?” Why should they sign up for your session?

R: Interesting analogy! I’m not coordinated enough to play football or do ballet. ;0) But I do have a good bit of experience writing in all kinds of genres – fiction, nonfiction, and my first love, poetry.  I hope attendees will leave our workshop with neurons sparking away with ideas to liven up their fiction and nonfiction projects.  We’ll explore examples of how successful authors have employed poetic devices to enrich passages, and we’ll try out some techniques.  (Works-in-progress welcome!)

D: Your workshop sounds very interesting. Tell me, what makes a poem sing for you? Is it the sound of the words? The way the poem is constructed? The emotion conveyed? The originality?

R: It could be any or all of those things!  When the elements of a poem work together – the ideas, the sound of the words, rhythm, structure, appearance even –  to create an image that both surprises and registers as truth, I’m hooked.

D: As you know, every word in a poem is important and there is no room for any words that don’t “fit.” Is there any word (that we can mention in this blog post) that you feel should never be in a poem?

R: Ha! Well, I’d never say “never,” especially to another writer.  After taking a workshop years ago with renowned poet and anthologist Lee Bennett Hopkins, I am far less free with the words “and” and “the” in a poem.  Only if there’s no way around it will I include them now, and only if they seem absolutely necessary.  If you’re ever fortunate enough to have a critique with Rebecca Kai Dotlich, as I’ve been, you’ll find that behind that warm and friendly demeanor she’s an absolute stickler about making EACH and EVERY word in a poem carry its weight and then some.  No lazy writing.

While I think writing a long piece of prose is a different thing from writing a poem, applying that same kind of poetic precision in select passages can make them sparkle.  Or sizzle – depending on which effect you’re going for!

D:  I agree. Who are your favorite poets? What makes them your favorites? Do you have a favorite poem? If so, why do you like this poem best?

R: Many incredibly talented poets are writing for children today; I’d hesitate to start naming names because 1.) this blog post would be very, very long and 2.) the moment I hit “send,” I’d think of someone else whose work I love. I join many other poets in unabashed praise for the work of the late Valerie Worth.  I do think her short poems are just magical – they invite the reader to see something familiar in an unfamiliar way. Our own Irene Latham has recently featured many of Worth’s poems on her blog, “Live Your Poem.” Here are the last couple of stanzas of one of my favorite Valerie Worth poems, which Irene posted Friday and which I’ve shared before, too: 

– from “cat”

She settles slight neat muscles
Smoothly down within
Her comfortable fur,

Slips in the ends, front paws,
Tail, until she is readied,
Arranged, shaped for sleep.

Classic poets I love include Blake, Wordsworth, Hopkins, Dickinson, Williams. I’m also inspired by many contemporary haiku writers, as well as the “old masters” – Basho, Buson, Issa, and Chiyo-ni.

One of my favorite pieces of writing ever is the first essay in Nancy Willard’s TELLING TIME. It’s called, “How Poetry Came into the World and Why God Doesn’t Write It.”  She’s just brilliant.

D: What are you working on now? Any new books in the publication pipeline? Poems, prose, articles?

R: I have some poetry in the publication pipeline – contributions to a couple of projects I’m not at liberty to share yet.  But I also have one I think I can share, because Lee Bennett Hopkins shared it himself in an interview!  He’s doing a collection for the very youngest readers and listeners for Abrams, and I’m thrilled that a poem of mine is scheduled to be included.

I regularly submit haiku to journals such as Modern Haiku, Frogpond, and Acorn and am always honored when a poem makes it in an issue.  (I’ll be on a panel at the upcoming Haiku Society of America/southeast Region Haikufest in Atlanta at the end of October, which should be a fantastic weekend.)  https://www.facebook.com/events/418063954956424/

Now that my husband and I are brand-new empty nesters, I plan to return to book projects I’ve had in the works a while.  Some have had helpful formal feedback at previous wik and Springmingle conferences, and they are waiting for me to roll up my sleeves and get to work!

Thanks again for the interview – here’s to a terrific wik conference!

D: Thank you for stopping by, Robyn. I think conference attendees are in for a treat at your workshop. I hope they all bring works in progress.

If you’re interested in learning more about other members of the conference faculty, follow the WIK blog tour links below:

Aug. 28            Author Matt de la Peña at Stephanie Moody’s Moodyviews
Editor Lou Anders at F.T. Bradley’s YA Sleuth
Aug. 29            Author Doraine Bennett at Jodi Wheeler-Toppen’s Once Upon a Science Book
Author Robyn Hood Black at Donny Seagraves’ blog
Aug. 30            MFA program director Amanda Cockrell at Elizabeth Dulemba’s blog
Illustrator Prescott Hill at Gregory Christie’s G.A.S.
Aug. 31            Author Heather Montgomery at Claire Datnow’s Media Mint Publishing blog
Editor Michelle Poploff at Laura Golden’s Just Write
Sept. 3             Author Nancy Raines Day at Laurel Snyder’s blog
Author Jennifer Echols at Paula Puckett’s Random Thoughts from the Creative Path
Sept. 4             Editor Dianne Hamilton at Ramey Channell’s The Painted Possum
Author Janice Hardy at Tracey M. Cox’s A Writer’s Blog
Sept. 5             Author / illustrator Sarah Frances Hardy at Stephanie Moody’s Moodyviews
Agent Sally Apokedak at Cheryl Sloan Wray’s Writing with Cheryl
Sept. 6             Author / illustrator Chris Rumble at Cyrus Webb Press.

                         Agent Jennifer Rofe at Cathy Hall’s blog

 

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SCBWI SpringMingle 2013 Blog Tour: Agent Jill Corcoran

SCBWI SpringMingle 2013 Blog Tour: Agent Jill Corcoran

Today I have the pleasure of hosting Jill Corcoran, a literary agent with the Herman Agency and a speaker at the SCBWI Southern Breeze Region’s SpringMingle conference in Atlanta Feb. 22-24, 2013.

Jill Corcoran primarily represents children’s books. She has sold over 60 books and recently signed her first movie deal. Her clients include Robin Mellom, Janet Gurtler, Martha Brokenbrough, Kelly Milner Halls, Ralph Fletcher and Jen Arena. Jill also is the editor of DARE TO DREAM…CHANGE THE WORLD (KANE MILLER, 2012), a poetry anthology which includes Ellen Hopkins, Jane Yolen, J. Patrick Lewis, and Lee Bennett Hopkins.

Recently, I talked to Jill about her work and her upcoming sessions at SpringMingle. Below are highlights of our conversation.

Q. Jill, you were an author before you were
an agent and (correct me if I’m wrong) you presently wear both hats. How
do you balance these two careers?

A. I
mostly agent. I have slowed down on my writing quite a bit. It is hard
to do it all as I also have 3 children. What I do love is creating
poetry anthologies like DARE TO DREAM…CHANGE THE WORLD (Kane Miller,
Fall 2012). I hope to come up with another great theme and create that
anthology some time in the future.

Q. I read online that you are a member of SCBWI. How has SCBWI helped you as a writer and an agent? 

A. I
love SCBWI. I have met all of my writer friends though SCBWI and many
of my clients through SCBWI conferences. I have learned so much, and
continue to learn from every conference I go to.

Q. Tell me a little about what to expect in your Spring Mingle general session, “Great Expections.” 

A. Beck
McDowell and I will be talking about what expectations are on both
sides of the author/agent relationship. What expectations are
reasonable? What are unreasonable? How do you work out those
differences? Plus all the ways an agent and author work together to grow
an author’s career.

Q. Your split session is “What
Makes a Manuscript Sale-able.” Is there one thing above everything else
that makes a manuscript salable? If so, what is that one thing? Can you tell us a little more about this session? 

A. I have a blog post called WHAT MAKES A BOOK SELL and I will quote some of it here:

“What makes a book sell to a publisher, and sell-through to readers?

It
is NOT how fabulous your website or blog is. It is NOT how many
facebook or twitter friends you have, how many publishing links you
forward or put on said website, blog, facebook and twitter. It is not
how much editors and agents like you, though being a pain in the arse
will NOT help you in any way, shape or form.

What sells a book is THE WRITING coupled with an ORIGINAL, COMPELLING CONCEPT!”

Q. I see you take email queries only. What triggers a “yes, send me the rest of the manuscript,” response from you?

A. When I can’t put those first 10 pages down and I have to find out what happens next. That = a YES!

Q. On the agency website, you say you’re interested in high
concept Young Adult Middle Grade Thrillers, Mystery, Romance, Romantic
Comedies, and Adventure manuscripts. Do you have a favorite from this
list? Is there a particular kind of manuscript that you’d really like to
find?

A. I am
looking for original voices and concepts. There is no favorite. Simply, I
am looking for a book I cannot put down. A character I want to carry in
my head. Writing that blows me away.

Q. What are you absolutely not
looking for at this time? Is there a particular type of manuscript (or
first 10 pages) that you see over and over and wish you never had to see
again?

A. I am not looking for poetry, plays,
screenplays, dystopia, vampires, devils and angels (I represent Martha
Brockenbrough’s DEVINE INTERVENTION, Arthur Levine/Scholastic 2012 and
the SWEET EVIL TRILOGY, HarperCollins, 2012, 21013, 2014), and
historical fiction for which the author has not done a great deal of research
for setting/dialog/plot/etc.

Q. You are the editor of DARE TO
DREAM. . . CHANGE THE WORLD (Kane Miller, 2012), a poetry anthology
which includes Ellen Hopkins, Jane Yolen, J. Patrick Lewis, & Lee
Bennett Hopkins. Tell me about this book.

A. My
inspiration for DARE TO DREAM…CHANGE THE WORLD came during a car
ride, listening to NPR cover the uprising of the Egyptian people against
their oppressive government. I have been to Egypt twice and remember
the extreme riches, and poverty, as well as needing to be escorted by
gunman with assault rifles to keep safe. I was overcome by the courage
of the Egyptian people and amazed by the role of social networking to
bring their dreams and actions instantly to the rest of the world.
To me, the tweets were like poetry, capturing the essence of
the people’s hopes, fears, strength and determination.

The title
of this collection sprung into being during that car ride as well as
the dream of a collection of poems by the best children’s poets living
today to share the spirit of dreaming + action = change and that each
one of us can make the world just a little better.

Dare to Dream
… Change the World pairs biographical and inspirational poems focusing
on people who invented something, stood for something, said something,
who defied the naysayers and not only changed their own lives, but the
lives of people all over the world.

The poets included were
chosen because they too have informed, inspired and engaged young
people throughout their careers with both their actions and their words.

My hope is that the Dare to Dream…Change the World can spark a paradigm shift from resigned to inspired.

Please see my website www.daretodreamchangetheworld.com for
a free 30 page Common Core State Standards Curriculum Guide, bios of
the contributing poets, and information about the Annual Dare to
Dream Poetry Contest for Kids with prizes of donation of $1,500 worth of
Kane Miller and Usborne books to the winner’s school library or a
library of their choice plus an ebook to be published by Kane Miller of
the top 30 poems.

Q. There are many changes going
on in publishing. What are your feelings and predictions on the future
of writing, publishing, children’s book publishing, in 2013 and beyond?
Do you see e-books taking over? Do you see the rolls of agent, editor,
author changing? How do you feel about authors who self-publish?

A. Kids
need to read good books, plain and simple. An unedited, poorly
illustrated home-spun book is not going to cut it. BUT, for me
DISCOVERABILITY is the key to publishers survival. Publishers already
know how to publish great books. They do it better than most
self-published books. But, they need to hone their marketing and
publicity skills and develop new ways of reaching readers.

I
do not believe e-books will take over as much as they are another means
to share intellectual property with readers. The story, the words, the
characters, setting, plot, etc=the book. How we read it does not
determine the quality of that book.

Q.  On the same note, tell me about new books on the horizon for your current clients. 

A. I
can’t discuss all of them because some of them are hush,
hush….strange, right? But some ideas we keep under wraps to make a big
splash when they hit bookshelves and e-readers. Here are some books
coming in 2013:

Janet
Gurtler’s HOW I LOST YOU about two girls who have been best fiends
forever coming to terms with a change in their relationship and learning
when it’s best to hold on and when it’s best to let go, Sourcebooks
Fire, Spring 2013. This is Janet’s 5 YA book of 7 that she is writing
for Sourcebooks.

Robin
Mellom’s THE CLASSROOM, book 2, Hyperion-Disney. This is book 2 of a 4
book deal, and Robin also has her YA DITCHED plus a new YA coming out
from Hyperion soon.

Wendy
Higgins’s SWEET PERIL and SWEET RECKONING, books 2 and 3 of the SWEET
EVIL trilogy, in which a half-angel/half-demon is our last hope to rid
the earth of demons and must choose between her love for Kaidan (son of
the demon of Lust) and her angelic destiny, HarperCollins 2013 &
2014.

Wendy Higgins’s
FLIRTING WITH MAYBE, in which a tenth-grade baseball star falls hard
for a senior girl but finds himself benched in the friend zone until one
drunken night changes everything, Harper Teen Impulse (this is a YA
Digital)

Denise Lewis
Patrick’s LIFE GETS TWISTED pitched as the THE HOUSE ON MANGO STREET
twisted with the Southern African-American experience unearthing the raw
reality of prejudice, courage, perseverance and love, Carolrhoda Lab.

Gary
Urey’s debut SUPER SCHNOZ AND THE GATES OF SMELL, when a corporation
pollutes his school, a boy with a massive nose transforms into Super
Schnoz, a nostril-flaring, booger-blasting, crime-fighting superhero and
works with his friends to defeat evil, and save their summer vacation,
Albert Whitman.

Kelly
Milner Halls’ COURAGEOUS CANINE, featuring a pitbull who lost her leg
when she saved her owner from an oncoming train; a pod of dolphins who
saved a surfer from a great white shark, and a gorilla who saved a
three-year old boy after he fell into the gorilla enclosure at the zoo,
National Geographic Children’s

Kenn Nesbitt’s KISS, KISS, GOOD NIGHT in which baby animals snuggle in tight with their mothers to say good night, Scholastic.

Aimee
Reid’s LITTLE GREY, in which a baby elephant dreams of growing big
while spending a playful day in the forest with his mother, Random House
Children’s Books

And of course Beck
McDowell has more books coming!  IMMORTELLE, in which mysterious
mementoes in a New Orleans cemetery lure a girl into a terrifying
journey that leaves her wrapped in the arms of one boy and longing for
another, Nancy Paulsen Books/Penguin will be coming to you in 2014.

There are so many more but the above is a sampling of what I rep.

Q. Have you ever been to Georgia? 

A. Nope and I am so looking forward to it.

Q. Anything else on the horizon that you can tell us about?

A. I
am starting a new educational venture to give writers the opportunity
to learn more about traditional publishing, publishers and agents. I am
just now creating these workshops so the topics and dates are still up
in the air. Workshops will be live, 9pm EST.

Each
workshop will consist of 3 presenters plus a moderator. I will either
be on screen as facilitator…and in some workshops I will participate
as a presenter too.

http://apathtopublishing.com/

Thanks, Jill. We’re looking forward to your SpringMingle visit and sessions. Here is more information on Jill’s sessions.

General Session: Great Expectations: what are the expectations on both sides of the author/agent relationship? What expectations are reasonable? What are unreasonable, and how do you work out those differences? This session will feature Jill with her author Beck McDowell.

Split Session: What Makes a Manuscript Sale-able? Providing examples of books from many genres, Jill will talk about what has sold as well as some which, while well written, were not contracted.

“It is NOT how fabulous your website or blog is. It is NOT how many facebook or twitter friends you have, how many publishing links you forward or put on said website, blog, facebook and twitter. It is not how much editors and agents like you, though being a pain in the arse will NOT help you in any way, shape or form.

What sells a book is THE WRITING coupled with an ORIGINAL, COMPELLING CONCEPT!””

— Jill Corcoran

For more information about SpringMingle ’13, visit the Southern Breeze Region website.

To register for SpringMingle ’13, which will take place Feb. 22-24, 2013, in Atlanta, GA, go to the registration site.

Want to know more about Jill Corcoran? Visit her blog or go to the Herman Agency, Inc. website here.

Know
who else will be at Springmingle ’13? Check out this list, follow the
blog tour to meet them, then register to see them in person at www.southern-breeze.net

Jan. 21: Will Terry, illustrator, at Elizabeth O. Dulemba’s blog

For more information, visit the work-in-progress website for A PATH TO PUBLISHING:

Jan. 22: Beck McDowell, author, at Bonnie Herold’s “Tenacious Teller of Tales”

Jan. 23: Nikki Grimes, author, at Gail Handler’s “Write From the Soul”

Jan. 24: Jill Corcoran, agent, at Donny Seagraves’ blog

Jan. 25: Chad Beckerman, creative director, at Laura Golden’s blog

Jan. 28: Katherine Jacobs, editor, at Cathy C. Hall’s blog

Jan. 29: Mark Braught, illustrator, at Vicky Alvear Shecter’s “History with a Twist”

Jan. 30: Carmen Agra Deedy, author, at Ramey Channell’s “The Moonlight Ridge Series”

SpringMingle '13 will be held Feb. 22-24, 2013, in Atlanta, GA. SpringMingle ’13 will be held Feb. 22-24, 2013, in Atlanta, GA.

SCBWI MD/DE/WV Summer Conference in Maryland

Like most writers, I spend long hours in my home office, tapping on a keyboard in isolation. But every now and then I get to leave the computer and my current manuscript and my white cat, Casey, and venture out into the real world. This past weekend was one of those “venture out” times. I just got back from spending three days in Maryland, in the towns of Frederick and Buckeystown. I flew Delta from the Atlanta airport and we landed in Baltimore about 3:45 Friday afternoon.
Sue Poduska, member, and Naomi Wender-Milliner, Assistant Regional Advisor, of the SCBWI MD/DE/WV region greeted me at the Baltimore/WI airport, along with writer/teacher Teresa Crumpton. Sue drove us all to the motel in Frederick and later that night we got to meet author Edith Hemingway, who also happens to be the Regional Advisor of this region of SCBWI, and other speakers at the conference, including authors and keynote speakers Margaret Peterson Haddix, Joyce McDonald, Bonnie Doerr, Marc Aronson, and Carolyn Reeder. Also Highlights for Children senior editor Debra Hess and art director Kelley Cunningham, plus author Carolyn Crimi and author-bloggers Mary Bowman-Kruhm and Wendie Old. Also Karen Nelson, freelance art director and cover designer, and Louise May, VP and Editorial Director of Lee and Low Books, and agents Elana Roth and Stephen Fraser, and authors Amie Rose Rotruck and Lois Szymanski, and Green Willow Books Assistant editor Michelle Corpora. Michelle Poploff also was there. Michelle, who is VP and Editorial Director of Delacorte Press, a division of Random House Children’s Books, and an author as well, just happens to be my editor and also is Edie Hemingway’s editor. Our debut solo novels, Gone From These Woods and Road to Tater Hill, came out at almost the same time in 2009. For more information about Edie’s book, which won a Parents’ Choice Gold Award recently, visit her website. To read more about my book, go here.

This summer conference was held at The Claggett Center in Frederick County, Maryland. In addition to breathtaking mountains views out the windows, the conference center served delicious cafeteria food each day. I had never been to a SCBWI conference outside my own Southern Breeze/a region, so speaking at this Maryland/Delaware/West Virginia summer conference about my bookand how I used inspiration from real life to create a fictional story with fictional characters and a setting taken from my own backyard and surrounds was a real treat for me.

One of the best things about traveling to Maryland for the first time and speaking at the conference was the opportunity to make new writer friends, including Kathleen Thompson, who lives in Birmingham, is a member of the Southern Breeze Region of SCBWI, and writes a charming blog called “Word Spinning by Kathleen.” I also got to meet Patti Zelch, who has a new picture book out from Sylvan Dell Publishing called Ready, Set, Wait! I also got to know Bonnie Doerr, author of the YA eco-novel, Island Sting, and enjoyed exchanging conversation and getting to know writers Teresa Crumpton and Gayle Payne, plus many more.

If you live in the SCBWI MD/DE/WV region and/or just want to read more about this regional writers and illustrators group, visit their great blog, As The Eraser Burns. Thanks again to Edith Hemingway and everyone in this region for inviting me and hosting me this weekend. I enjoyed my trip up North and look forward to visiting again.

Note: This post originally appeared on my blogspot blog, Winterville Writer, July 21, 2010.

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