SCBWI Grow Your Picture Book Garden Recap

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I have been having a lot of fun on what I have been calling “my writing adventure”, and I am always seeking new ways to improve my writing. I have learned a lot, but I am still learning. There will always be room for me to learn and improve more!

I had the opportunity to attend an SCBWI Adventures in Nonfiction Conference earlier this year to learn about nonfiction children’s books. Lately, I have been talking about the SCBWI Grow Your Picture Book Garden Conference, which I had the pleasure of attending this past weekend. This was another great learning opportunity for me.

grow picture book conference

This was a great conference for me to attend since it focused solely on picture books. I came home with 10 pages of handwritten notes in a notebook, worksheets with more handwritten notes, and a lot of information to digest.

Some topics discussed at the conference include:

  • rules of three
  • types of words to use
  • tips to create a great character
  • showing vs telling
  • brainstorming ideas
  • word count
  • tips for humor
  • illustrator notes
  • how to hook readers
  • tips for titles
  • hyperbole
  • allegory
  • thinking pictorially
  • tips for text to flow
  • benefit of having manuscript read aloud
  • benefits of constantly writing
  • revising, revising, and revising more
  • pagination
  • information to include with manuscripts
  • tips to creating great page turns
  • description of literary agent
  • what to look for in an agent/ red flags of an agent
  • scenes of book
  • openings
  • how to show internal thought

I’m only providing you with the topics covered, but not all of the inside conference details. If you are a children’s writer and/or illustrator (or hoping to become one some day), I recommend finding an SCBWI division near you if you are able. SCBWI members are given access to The Book: Essential Guide to Publishing for Children, which is a wonderful resource for children’s book writers and illustrators. SCBWI also offers various conferences throughout the year and information on meetings to attend with other local authors and illustrators.

At the conference, we also had an award ceremony for Sarvinder Naberhaus who won the SCBWI Midwest Division Crystal Kite Award for the beautifully illustrated book she wrote entitled Blue Sky White Stars. (affiliate link)

I enjoyed listening to all of the presentations, learning all of the information, and being able to ask questions. There is definitely a lot to digest now that I am home from the conference!

Is there something you hope to learn more about?


Upcoming SCBWI Picture Book Conference

I learned quite a bit of information at the SCBWI Adventures in Nonfiction Conference¬†I attended earlier this year, and I am excited to announce an upcoming conference. If you are interested in writing children’s books, you may enjoy the Grow Your Picture Book Garden conference that is now open for registration. Grow Your Picture Book Garden is a one day conference taking place on Saturday, August 11th in Des Moines, IA. If you register before June 30th, you get a discounted price. For more information about who is presenting, what children’s book topics will be covered, and how to register, visit the SCBWI event page here.

grow picture book conference

Will you be attending Grow Your Picture Book Garden or any other upcoming SCBWI conferences?