Gems from the SCBWI Winter Conference 2011

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Huge discovery this weekend: Twitter isn’t only for organizing revolutions. It’s also good for keeping tabs on what’s happening at that awesome conference across the country you weren’t able to attend.

Who knew?

OK, in all honesty, I did know that. But the coolness of Twitter hit home this weekend while I was here in Arizona and a slew of my writer friends were cavorting at the SCBWI conference in New York.

Cavorting. Seriously.

I followed the #ny11scbwi hashtag to glean those gems the attendees shared from the keynotes and breakout sessions. And now I’m going to share some of the best tweets (in my opinion) from the conference. I hope you find them helpful, or at least entertaining.

@FirstNovelsClub First Novels Club Prioritize during revisions–don’t garden while the house is on fire!

@alicepope alicepope Rachel Griffiths: I just want to fall into an authors world. I don’t like it when writers try to write to trends.

@KathyTroidle Kathy Troidle “A haunting phrase and little more, imagination take wing and soar.” -Lois Lowry

@LPP_Media Rana DiOrio “Reach into your past. Give your happiness, sorrow, anxiety words.” Lois Lowry

@ohthattanya Tanya Now for a novel to succeed it needs to be both high-concept AND literary. – Alexandra Cooper, Simon and Schuster.

@kimmiepoppins Kimberly J. Sabatini Breakout One-Alessandra Balzer-be able to distill your book into one sentence. The essence of the book.

@cynthiajabar cynthia jabar Come up with a LOGLINE for a pitch 4 your book. Hunger Games meets Finding Nemo. Alexandra Cooper

@cynthiajabar cynthia jabar What does Alessandra Balzar/Harper look 4 in projects? Voice,groundbreaking concept,world building,read a-loud quality,heart

@teenwritersbloc Teen Writers Bloc “You have to be open to all ideas if you want to be a writer. You can’t plan where you will end up,” says R.L. Stine

@kimmiepoppins Kimberly J. Sabatini Jules Feiffer-I’m always entertaining the possibility of failure but don’t let it get me down..

@mbrockenbrough Martha Brockenbrough Sara Zarr: The time between when you’re no longer a beginner but haven’t broken into the business is the hardest in your career.

@mbrockenbrough Martha Brockenbrough Sara Zarr: Your life is your greatest creation. The life that you create for yourself…

@mbrockenbrough Martha Brockenbrough Sara Zarr: … and the love for that life may be the only thing that is totally, completely yours.

KathyTroidle Kathy Troidle Crafting a creative life that is steady, sane, sustainable results in small progress that grows, matures and gives back to u

@FirstNovelsClub First Novels Club Your creative life should be engaging: expand you, not reduce you to word count & computer screen.

@KathyTroidle Kathy Troidle “Your creative life is engaging, taps into something deep within you that matters, that moves you, excites you. ” – Sara Zarr

@mbrockenbrough Martha Brockenbrough Sara Zarr: Be choosy about who you share the deep issues of your creative life with.

@kimmiepoppins Kimberly J. Sabatini @sarazarr only other creative people get it when it comes to the joys and struggles of our work.

FirstNovelsClub First Novels Club Zarr: Have a faith based creative life. Have faith that what matters to you matters to others and will one day reach them.

@FirstNovelsClub First Novels Club Zarr: Take care of yourself! There’s no artistic romance in being self-destructive.

@KathyTroidle Kathy Troidle “Learn what habits feed your creative life and what things thwart it” @sarazarr

@emcguirestudio Erin McGuire Zarr: “Take care of yourself! There’s no artistic romance in being self-destructive.”

@mbrockenbrough Martha Brockenbrough Sara Zarr: What I’ve learned is, the battle is not the book…disenchantment is the mother of all obstacles.

@alicepope alicepope Zarr: Those small moments of human connection I try to make happen in my stories are worth all the pain of getting there.
@alicepope alicepope Zarr: The answer is always in doing the work.

@mbrockenbrough Martha Brockenbrough Lenore Look: Remember that your character is 50 percent you, and 50 percent what you create.

@ToyGuru Mary Rose Play with words, use anticipation, embarrassing moments, shock value of inappropriate behavior, reversal of expectations.

@mbrockenbrough Martha Brockenbrough Lenore Look: “I think the court jester’s role was to enable the king to look carefully at things that were hard to look at.”

@kimmiepoppins Kimberly J. Sabatini Mo Willems: my philosophy is that the difference between kids and adults is that kids are shorter.

@kimmiepoppins Kimberly J. Sabatini LSP-where things get stressful is in between, the area where you want something, but don’t know if you have the goods.

@mbrockenbrough Martha Brockenbrough Linda Sue Park: Don’t believe in yourself. Instead, believe in the work.

@mbrockenbrough Martha Brockenbrough Linda Sue Park: Read. If you read enough great stories, novels, poems and memoirs, you begin to build a mental standard.

@mbrockenbrough Martha Brockenbrough Linda Sue Park: It takes a certain kind of courage to sit down and face a blank screen or a canvas.

@alicepope alicepope Park: If you’re not afraid of something, that’s not courage–that’s some kind of malfunction in your brain chemistry.


3 thoughts on “Gems from the SCBWI Winter Conference 2011

    Lisa Nowak said:
    February 1, 2011 at 8:50 am

    Wow, you’ve got some real gems there.

    Lee Wind said:
    February 10, 2011 at 8:31 am

    Okay Amy, how brilliant to do a roundup of a conference you weren’t even at… via following it on the twitter hashtag! And frankly, it IS brilliant – you’ve got a lot of good sparklers here from the gem-mine that was #ny11scbwi !

      Amy K. Nichols said:
      February 10, 2011 at 5:13 pm

      Thanks, Lee! I was so bummed to miss the winter conference this year. Hoping to see you in LA this summer! 🙂

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