Friday, October 9, 2015


Giveaway alert!

             If you stumble upon the capital letters, SCBWI, unexplained, this can pose a puzzlement.

                                                            See Chicken Books Which Invigorate?
                                                             Smile Cold Bears Wafting Icicles?  

            From the first time I heard SCBWI spoken out in full length -
Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators - the nourishing group has held my hand.
          Maybe you have your own glow from connecting with a SCBWI critique group,
from attending a conference or, in gleaning a crucial tip at the national
website, and from regional chapter sites.

            And then, consider the SCBWI Bulletin.

            Many of us save paper version of the SCBWI Bulletin.  Each issue’s cover
shows off the fabulous original art of one talented & lucky member artist.
            You can make a game of finding the SCBWI kite & tail on each cover.
            You can curate favorite covers in your office or at school.
            One of my topmost faves is the plant-bedecked  May/June of 2010 cover
created by artist Lisa Desimini. A favorite kite hunt cover I like is the 40th birthday
celebration cover by Priscilla Burris in May/June 2011. Many of us kept that issue, as it featured a spiffy SCBWI chronology by Eileen Heyes. (And the cover kites were small cupcake toppers.)

            A sweet use of old paper ones (some members receive the Bulletin online)
is to gift them to SCBWI recruits. When the nascent SCBWI network launched in
North Florida in 2001, our events with Eliza Dresang, a well-regarded children’s literature

specialist, award-winning author Adrian Fogelin, our showcase at the library, & monthly meetings,
were fun. But for newbies, it could be that our pass-along SCBWI Bulletin copies
(as long as they lasted) were the most popular feature. 

            SCBWI is both safety net & tough love coach for illustrators & writers worldwide.
These are creators striving for nothing less than the best for young readers,to paraphrase
Newbery Award author E.L. Konisburg, who said, “And writing for children deserves a certain
kind of excellence.”

            We are lucky to hear from Steve Mooser, SCBWI president since 1971.
            Steve Mooser studied journalism & film-making in college & has lived on both coasts,
but prefers California. He founded SCBWI with jaunty author Lin Oliver, he has published
more than 60 books & has won many awards. He is a husband and a father, in addition to being
president.  He is also was also, a class clown. Now, some of Steve Mooser’s preferences or predictions.
​ ​
7 Questions for Steve Mooser, President, Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators

 Favorite spots/places/times to read for pleasure

In the evening before falling asleep—that’s usually in a bed rather than in a canoe far out at sea.

 Surfboard, paddle board, kayak/canoe or…


 What professional writing/publishing/creative groups do you belong to, besides SCBWI?
For what reasons?
I belong to The Authors Guild because I support their lobbying legislators and others for fair treatment of authors and illustrators.
Also -The Coalition Against Censorship, again, for supporting authors.

 What may be new for SCBWI national conferences in the next 10 years?
Probably more on new publishing platforms, and perhaps some live streaming of certain sessions. And if I have my way, perhaps stream the entire conference using Google Cardboard or Oculus Rift technology, to give people around the world the opportunity to experience the conference in Virtual Reality.

 Three legendary SCBWI members, sadly no longer with us & why we should
commemorate/remember them (links at end of this column)
Sue Alexander, our first member and a co-founder of the SCBWI.
Paula Danziger, whose enthusiasm for writing, for interacting with young people, and for the SCBWI keeps her in our thoughts every day.
Sid Fleischman, who along with Jane Yolen, spoke at our very first conference. He never ceased advising and mentoring us on everything from writing to magic. And he was master of both.

 Three current youngest SCBWI members & something about them
We don’t ask for age other than over 18.  I will say this—we wish we could have members under 18 but COPPA (Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act) laws prohibit us from collecting contact information on minors.  Over the years, however, some members have snuck their budding author or illustrator son or daughter into a session or two at the conference, and I have no doubt that mother’s stealth and their children’s desire will pay off down the road with a career in the field.

 (from Jan -  I have always enjoyed meeting these junior talents at SCBWI events...)
What are your visual art skills?

Zero –even my stick figures don’t look like stick figures

Appreciations to Steve for flying kites with us today & for his work on behalf of SCBWI.

Look for Resoruces/Links & Giveaway info, below.

STEVE MOOSER, especially his Class Clown Academy
BOTH SCBWI & Steve Mooser,  May 2015  Q & A

. . .
GIVEAWAY – A copy of one of SCBWI member Lisa Desimini's picture books
(random title from Jan’s cache)

Comment TO WIN
During October at this day's blog -
1. Create a fun substitute for what the capital letters SCBWI can mean
 (see top of this article…)
2.  Leave a topical comment
3.  Or, do both
Plus, if you want to win,  make sure I know how to reach you.

As always, you may comment & opt out of the giveaway.
Persnickety Ginger the Ginger Cat is often hired to perform
selection honors & likely he will assist once more.

DEADLINE – Last day to comment to win - Oct 31, 2015
As close to Nov. 1 as possible, winner will be posted here in comments.

(You need not be an SCBWI member to enter... but, why don't you join, n-e-how?)


  1. I've been a member for ?? decades! Thanks, SCBWI, Steve, and Jan! My entries:
    So can bears win insects?
    Such cupcakes bear winning icing
    Silly campers beg with incense
    Some children bring worth innately

  2. Ohhh, your creativity cap is shining, Jane!

  3. What a fun interview! And that would be superb if SCBWI events/conferences could be live streamed!

  4. DEFINITELY a fun interview.
    And I would love to attend SCBWI:
    Santa Claus's Brother's Winter Island. ;) (which, of course, is nowhere NEAR the North Pole - some say the Caribbean, others the Mediterranean)

    Contact info: joanne (at) joannesher (dot) com

    1. Another clever eyedear for deconstructing what SCBWI mite mean in an alternate universe.
      Thanks for playing, Joanne!

  5. Steve is the bomb and I have no doubt he will figure out how to live stream using some sort of high tech gadgetry. How about Some Crafty Book Wannabes Imagine :)

    1. Another creative entry, Carrie.
      So gre8t to meet you here.

  6. Great interview!
    Steve Can Be Wonderfully Insightful. :)
    contact: soosaw (at) gmail (dot) com

    1. Aww... that's from the heart.
      Happy to meet you here, Susie.

  7. Fun interview, Jan. And I'm loving everyone's variations of SCBWI.

  8. Great interviw.....Some cats become wily inventors
    contact info

  9. Patty - thanks & I agree about the fun variations.
    Our readers are so creative, such as Julie.
    Ginger very much favors the C=cats contribution!!!

  10. I am not a member but every year I have it on my "to do" list. I just keep forgetting. Procrastination is terrible. I love the interview!

  11. Appreciations for your visit, Rita T.
    If you jump ahead to Group Blog poster Todd Burleson's library post this month, with a bonus vimeo talk, he covers how writers & creators procrastinate to good effect. So perhaps it's not terrible, after all.
    Enjoy your day!


    Appreciations to all who entered. Truly. Better luck next time & please some back here again, if you didn't win? Promise?

    We have two winners

    Jane Healy
    Julie Ismert

    In a week or less, I expect to be in touch for your shipping address.
    Or, you can leave it here, but that's not necessary.

    Again, applause for the creators of all the very creative eyedears!