Yesterday I joined SCBWI, the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Why did I take so long to do it? I guess because I never really felt like I was an illustrator before, and now that I am actually working as one every month, it fits.
What are the benefits of belonging to SCBWI? Well, there are many it seems. You should go to their website and take a gander, and it just so happens that there is a link on my blog, how handy. SCBWI has about 19,000 members worldwide and each of those members belongs to their own regional chapters, one of which is here in Utah. Our regional rep. is Sydney Husseman. Her e-mail address appears on the site if you would like to contact her about chapter information.
SCBWI holds two regional conferences per year, or you can attend the bigwig conferences in Los Angeles in August and New York in February if you have the time and the funds. All the conferences include great networking opportunities to meet with people in the children’s book industry. There are also in-depth classes taught on subjects that are well worth the time and the travel.
When you join SCBWI you will receive a bi- monthly newsletter with updates about the children’s book market, articles about writing and illustrating and a guide to SCBWI events.
Check out the Links section of the website and you will find Helpful Research Links, Industry Related Sites, Member Web Pages, and a site devoted to School Visits. Another website section informs you of awards and grants that are available to children’s writers and illustrators. There is even a section where you can log on for discussions with other SCBWI members.
Not only does SCBWI benefit its members, but it looks good on your cover letter. Apparently being a member means something. I think it means commitment to your craft. So go ahead, get committed. Join SCBWI and see what they can do for you.