"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." —J. R. R. Tolkien

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Writer's Lunch

I met a fellow writer for lunch this past week. After making the ever-so-big decision of what to eat at Central Market (I got the salmon wasabi salad), we sat and had a great chat.
Some of the highlights of our talk as I saw it included:
  • talking about how we critique other's work
  • talking about what we gain from various conference/workshop attendance
  • talking about how we handle critique on our own work. I've gotten much better at this one.
  • catching up on life in general
One great thing about Austin is the strong SCBWI group we have here. Each month we have wonderful speakers come to our meetings (OK, I'm setting myself up a bit here as I'm speaking at our July meeting). We have an amazing list of published authors. We have editors. I've been fortunate enough to meet such great people who are super generous with their time and love to get together to talk about nothing but writing.
But it makes me curious. How are other local SCBWI groups? Strong? Non-existent? Do you have to drive far for meetings? Are there annual conferences?

In case you'll be our way in April, come to our conference. It's sure to be great!


Jim D said...

The state of Illinois is a single region in SCBWI, but within that region there are 16 network groups. Two of the groups are aimed specifically at illustrators. Network groups meet once a month (some not over the summer). Meeting formats vary. Some networks do have speakers every month. Other, like mine, have topics for attendees to get together and discuss. Our network also has 1 or 2 Saturday programs with speakers, plus an annual critique-nic (critique/picnic).

The region also has an annual all day conference in November.

Central Illinois/Champaign has been having a retreat in Feb/March -- this year featuring Richard Peck.

This June Springfield Area is having a 2 day conference/retreat featuring Holly Black, agent Barry Goldblatt and Hyperion editor Namrata Tripathi.

The region has also been having Saturday "Food for Thought" meetings aimed at published authors. I think they are about every 3 months.

I'm sure Ive missed things.

Illinois is an active SCBWI region with a great regional advisor, Esther Hershenhorn.

Jim D

PJ Hoover said...

Esther Hershenhorn is a great person to have in charge of the region, Jim. I heard her speak at a conference last year, and ... Wow - you guys are fortunate! And fortunate to have such an organized and expansive program.
Thanks for the great info!

TJBrown said...

Couldn't tell you as I have never attended a meeting. I am a member of RWA and can only afford so many groups.

Jim D said...

TJ, actually our network group meetings are open to all and special events just cost a tad more for non-SCBWI members. The only problem is I speak only for my network in Illinois and it would be a killer to pay for the gas to drive here for you. :-)

Let's see....at $3.00+ a gallon.....25 mpg highway.....

Jim D

PJ Hoover said...

You get 25 mpg?