3 S.R. Johannes: SCBWI LA - in a day

Saturday, August 08, 2009

SCBWI LA - in a day

Book Update: Bright is backin hadns of Awesome Agent. Cross your fingers! I feel its done - I rewrote beginning and ending in addition to edits _ added material resulting in an additional 12,000 words. Now tween book is at 63,000.

Blogger Update: so far have met Christy (Juvenescance), sherry solvang(write it now), suzanne young, shana silverman, lisa schroeder. someone told me Jess jordon was here but we havent seen her yet.

It is 10 pm (LA time) and our day really just ended.

Went for breakfast this morning with Lindsey Leavitt, Katie Anderson, Sarah Francis Hardy, and Kimberly Derting. (SFH had the best egg pizza - yum! and LL had a tower of sticky buns!! Yum yum! Me? the healthy oatmeal boring. Tomorrow I am going all out :)

The morning started off with Sherman Alexie, author of ...Diary of Part Time Indian...

he was so funny. But under all the humor was a guy who turned his painful childhood into a dream existence. A kid with brain damage, bad vision, poor, lived on an Indian reservation. A kid who found a way to escape from his hard childhood with books.

Here are some of my "Ah ha" moments (for more detail you can go to scbwi's blog.)

"when you give a kid a book he naturally identifies with than you expect him to connect with it. But when you give a kid a book that is outside his normal comfort zone, and he finds a way to connect with it - that is when you begin changing the world."

"The power of books is amazing. They find a way yo the people that need them the most. Whether its 1 person or 100,000. Every book has the destiny to change at least one person."

"As a children's author - you must accept responsibility of writing for a young audience; prepare to be lonely because it is hard work, and know when you write it - it will impact people."

Next was David Weisner (Flotsam)

"He talked about the films and books that impacted his illustrations and writing. He showed a journey of how he got to Flotsam. How all of his books led up to that one."

"Writing is a personal journey. We don't write with a certain kid in mind. We write from our kid. From our hearts, experiences, and memory. Kids just happen to be touched by them."

"Think about all the stuff that you thought was cool when you were a kid. There is a story in each thing that stood out to you."

Ingrid Law - Savvy

Write with creativity and courage
Read the book "Spunk and bite"
Push voice further than you thought possible.
exercise: write a crazy sentence - then ask questions. This is how Savvy started - one crazy sentence and a bunch of questions.
Trust your instincts, be wild and playful, have a beginner's mind, be courageous, take risks, and don't be afraid to break the rules - you can always rein them in
pretend you are always a tourist and see things with a new eye.
be sure to look up when you walk around so you can observe the nuances of life

Sarah Davies - Greenhouse Literary (love her!!!)

world rights - all languages in world
world english rights - english language anywhere in world
hard to see Us fiction in UK. less space for YA market

Ways to spread international buzz:
Scouts - represent foreign publishers
Publishers marketplace - sign up and watch foreign right sales
understand foreign market
Pub weekly features on international authors
Bologna Frankfurt conferences/book fairs

Advice for global sales
consider world when you write
have market in mind
middle grade needs strong sales
YA fiction with unique voice and premise

Audio Books
1) primary - when they exploit own rights
2) secondary - sells rights to someone else

what helps international sales
global appeal
unique voice
Non fiction and PB do not sell as well as MG/YA
unusually ideas
awards/sales figures
love young boy fiction
concepts and setting that transcends cultures

see you tomorrow!


lisa and laura said...

Yay! Have fun! Tell everyone we say hi!

Christina Lee said...

great info. thanks for keeping us posted!!! Wow 12,000 more words-you've been working your butt off-I'm sure it'll pay off for you!

Susan R. Mills said...

Thanks for sharing all of this. Hope you're having a great time!


I'm here. No, really, I am. To prove it, I'll quote Sherman Alexis: "Our choices are being made for us."

I looked for you yesterday but didn't see you. Maybe I'll hunt you down today :)

Corey Schwartz said...

Can't believe you are meeting all my blogger friends in person! Is it weird?

Kelly Polark said...

Thanks for the info, Shelli! Keep it comin'! I'm enjoying reading everyone's conference experiences!

Kimbra Kasch said...

Love the tips - living vicariously through you. Maybe one day I'll make it to the LA or NY SCBWI conference. Got my fingers X'd

Unknown said...

Thanks for this! Can't wait for more updates! We're living vicariously through you!