Friday, October 14, 2011
I've been busy writing and less busy blogging, but I thought I'd check in because I was finally able to go to an SCBWI meeting this week, and, wow... thanks, SCBWI. What an incredible resource for children's authors. The Illinois chapters are very active so I'm lucky that I have so many opportunities to meet and network with other authors. And talk about support. I don't feel so alone holed up writing in my basement anymore because I know there are a bunch of other people doing it, too! We talked about critique groups and how to find a new one. Dating analogies were used. It's important not to weird anybody out when you approach them to become a member of their critique group, for instance. (Sometimes it's helpful to point out the obvious.) At the end of the meeting the organizers separated us into our interests (children's books, illustrators, YA and MG) and told us how to introduce ourselves to each other and exchange contact information. It kind of felt like kindergarten, but it worked! Somebody also mentioned how some author groups, like say cookbook writers, for instance, are kind of competitive and proprietary and don't really like to share anything at all. I'm glad I'm not a cookbook author because that sounds like a drag. It's nice to know that even while I'm on this long writing journey, even the failures are good and hundreds of fellow writers are happy to tell me so. And I like being in a position to reach out and do the same for others. Back to the writing stuff now.