It’s been awhile since I reported on a conference event, but never fear I’ve got lots of good information coming your way. I attended the 2011 Southern California SCBWI Writer’s Day this past Saturday with a variety of speakers from Susan Patron to Bruce Coville. Here’s a few quick take-away’s from the event:
Susan Patron Newbery Award Winning Author said:
- Writing a novel is a thrill, it’s like riding off on a runaway horse, it’s thrilling and terrifying.
- For children growing up is something that happens in the tiny details of everyday.
- More on to come on winning the Newbery, new projects, and finding the heart of your story.
Tony Johnston author of almost 125 Picture Books shared:
- If I keep alive to everything, a story will find me.
- Keep it simple. But writing simply does not mean words must be short and easy. It should be the words that belong.
- Don’t play it safe. Writing is about risk taking!
- More to come on being inspired by your own emotions, the essence of childhood, and where to begin when writing a picture book.
Rachel Cohn New York Times Bestselling Young Adult Author said:
- First impressions are really important with teen readers. You must get it right from page one.
- Everything feels so big to a teen. It’s epic! It’s biblical!
- Voice is the way you speak on paper.
- More to come on what makes a good first page, working with a writing partner, and how to keep your teen voice authentic.
Bruce Coville Fantasy author of almost 100 books shared:
- “Fairytale is the best way to tell the truth.” – C.S. Lewis
- The world has become too small for the heart of a ten year-old. Fantasy liberates kids, it sweeps them off to a new place.
- Ask the tough questions. Why are we here? What do we need? These are the riddles of our lives.
- More to come on the difference between Sci-fi and Fantasy, tips for writing fantasy, and how to find the courage to dream.