Day one of the conference and what a way to start … with Mem Fox. I haven’t seen Mem for quite a few years so it was not only grand to hear her speak today but also to catch up with her last night at the faculty gathering for a quick chat. This morning Mem was glorious in her recitation of her books showing attendees the power behind her words, the ‘singing’ of the narrative, and the rhythm, the expression, the chanting, the recitation, and the importance of choosing just the right word. As well as hearing how to read a text with feeling and emotion – Mem is well known for that and is a star! And it is always emotive and evocative hearing Mem relate the story behind some of her stories.
At the conference there are workshops and panels with topics on just about everything to do with kidslit – including agents discussing what hooks them and success, checklists for submitting manuscripts, strong first pages, non fictions writing, small presses, designing smarter, and of course coffee and lunch and snaking by the pool in the sun! A great panel to listen to was the success story panel – the folks who have been ‘successful’ and recently published for the first time.
Another amazing session was Adam Rex talking about how he makes picture books – he is the creator of the SMEK books on which the movie HOME was based. His characters are always based on a real object too – often ones that he sculpted! Just scintillating – and he even finished with a rap!
The afternoon morphs into the evening with the SCBWI PAL party where PAL published members, just like the ubercrystal Samantha Berger, sell their title. This gathering then leads then into the evening socials. Of course the social for the Internationals and Translators members was where I parked myself tonight but folks can also visit the ever popular and often-crashed Illustrator Social or the non-fiction social.
And a nice conclusion to the night – a hotel fire alarm before finally hitting the sack!
More on the Carolinas later but Pam Vaughan (official photographer for the New England conference last weekend) has just sent me oodles and poodles of photos … so if you don’t want to see piccies of me in action – then look away now! There are photos of me with friends, of me panelling, photos […]