Happy New Year to our region and beyond! I am pleased to post a preview of our speakers for our “Spring Into Action” Conference, scheduled for March 12, 2011. I’m also excited to announce that Laura Bowers, YA author and member of our MD/DE/WV region, has joined our planning committee and has agreed to become our blog coordinator! Laura’s goal for the blog is to inform, motivate, and mentor, and she will update on a weekly basis. Be sure to subscribe for all update notifications.
In addition to becoming our blog coordinator, Laura Bowers is one of our speakers for the March Conference, so let’s begin with her bio:
Laura Bowers is a young adult novelist, wife, mother of two great boys, Orioles fan—no matter what their record is, coffee addict, compulsive list keeper, and obsessive self-helper. Her first novel, BEAUTY SHOP FOR RENT, Harcourt, came out in 2007, and her second novel, JUST FLIRT, will be released in 2012, so she’s very much aware of the second book blues and isn’t afraid to talk about it. When she’s not writing, she can be found reading, cheering for her boys at a baseball field or basketball court, or working on a to-do list that never gets done.
Heather Alexander is an Assistant Editor with Dial Books for Young Readers. She looks for strong, interesting, vulnerable characters with a fresh voice. Loves: contemporary YA, sci-fi, realistic and funny middle-grade, and silly picture books. Not so much: historical fiction, non-fiction, or paranormal romance. She is the one behind Manners Mash-Up: A Goofy Guide to Good Behavior, the Charlie and Lola hardcover books, and a few forthcoming novels whose titles are likely to change.
Kathi Appelt is the award-winning author of more than thirty books for children and young adults. Her first novel, The Underneath, won the Newbery Honor, was a National Book Award Finalist, and most recently won the PEN USA Literature for Children Award. In addition to writing, Ms. Appelt is on the faculty in the Masters of Creative Writing for Children and Young Adults at Vermont College of Fine Arts. Her newest book is Keeper, published by Atheneum, 2010. For more information, check her website: http://www.kathiappelt.com.
Marilyn Brigham has been at Marshall Cavendish for 6 years, where she edits everything from board books through YA. She is a magazine journalism graduate from Syracuse University. Marilyn loves edgy contemporary fiction, boy books, sports books, books with multicultural themes, chick lit, and humor. She would love to sign up more fiction for MG and YA and quirky picture books. She’s not the best match for historical fiction, nonfiction, high fantasy, or concept books.
Susan Detwiler is the illustrator of several books for children including Pandas’ Earthquake Escape by Phyllis Perry and One Wolf Howls (a 2010 Maryland Blue Crab Honor Book) by Scotti Cohn, both published by Sylvan Dell. Her illustrations have also appeared in the children’s magazines, Highlights For Children and Ladybug. Susan was raised in Maryland and received her education at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore. Visit www.susandetwiler.com
Amy S. Hansen is the author of over twenty children’s non-fiction science books, as well as a few for adults. She also writes for Highlights, Cricket, Click! and other children’s magazines. For all these projects she gets to explore real mysteries. It’s one of the best jobs in the world. http://amyshansen.com
Katy Kelly spent the first twenty years of her career writing for People magazine, USA Today and U.S. News. In 2004, Random House published the first of her Lucy Rose series for middle readers. (“Hilarious,” said the New York Times). The Melonhead series launched in 2009. (“Laugh out loud funny, rivaling Stink and Fudge …,” said the School Library Journal). Among her awards are Child magazine’s Best Book Award and a Publishers Weekly’s Flying Start. http://www.Katykellyauthor.com.
Kristen Nobles joined Candlewick Press, one of the largest independent publishing companies in the world, in 2004. As an art director, she is currently working with award-winning illustrators Leslie Patricelli, Sophie Blackall, Matt Tavares, Yuyi Morales, John Rocco, and AG Ford. Before returning to the east coast, Kristen was a senior designer at Chronicle Books in San Francisco. Her passion for children’s books has been passed down from her mother, an elementary teacher, and her grandmother, a librarian.
Rosemary Stimola, a former professor of language and literature and an award-winning children’s bookseller, formed the Stimola Literary Studio in 1997, offering representation to writers and writer/illustrators of children’s books. Representing both fiction and nonfiction from preschool through young adult, she is honored to count among her clients Maryland author, Laura Bowers and New York Times Bestselling and award-winning authors including Suzanne Collins, Jodi Lynne Anderson, Lisa Papademetriou, Mary E. Pearson, Lola Schaefer, Tanya Lee Stone and Matt Tavares.
Patti Zelch retired after fifteen years of teaching… and became a student. She earned her MFA at Spalding University in Louisville, Kentucky, and pursued her dream of writing for children. Many of her stories are influenced by the wonderful wildlife of south Florida, but it was a question from her oldest grandson that inspired her to write her debut creative nonfiction picture book, Ready,Set…WAIT! (Aug. 2010)
Stay tuned for complete details about our March 12, 2011 conference to be posted here and on the http://www.scbwi.org website within the next week. Brochures will be in the mail to all current SCBWI regional members by January 6th.