The Wild Wild Midwest Conference

Well friends, it was a weekend full of creativity, collaboration, character sketches, and behind -the-scenes advice from publishers, editors, writers and agents.  Put simply, the weekend rocked. Here is a picture of some fabulous writers from our Geneva writer’s group: Sarah Quinn, Jennifer Kaap, Phil Lumia and myself. What a good looking group!


One of my favorite breakout sessions was with author Sarah Aronson who spoke about putting main characters in the worst possible situations to see what they are made of. How many ways can we raise the stakes? Keep the tension in every scene, otherwise those kiddos are going to put our books down and head over to their  -OH NO- iPads!


Above is Jenny Wagh, Dorothy Wiese and myself at the Roaring 20’s party on Friday night. Don’t they look beautiful?


Troy Cummings, author of The Notebook of Doom books, taught us how to make a smart dummy to send off to agents. He suggested checking out storyboards for movies like Star Wars for good examples of pacing and beats. 

The Notebook of DOOM! — Troy Cummings <!– [if lt IE 9]>// <![endif]–> <!–

Here’s a picture of Troy and myself. I came home with two of his books and my boys inhaled them.

Alice B. McGinty signed her book, Gandhi: A March To Sea, for me. Alice actually went to India and retraced Gandhi’s march to write her book. How cool is that? The pictures in this book are so rich and vibrant, I’m so glad I bought it and I look forward to reading it with my boys.

For me, the best part of this conference was being with others who share an insane love for kidlit. You can see upcoming events by visiting SCBWI’s website. Go to a conference!



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