Wednesday, May 22, 2019

5 Reasons to Join the SCBWI If You Are Writing YA, MG, or PB

So, technically, this isn't a 5 Reasons to Write Post, it's a 5 Reasons to ... Post. I may change that graphic soon(ish). Here's another for today's topic:

After years of hearing about the SCBWI from other authors, I finally joined last spring/summer. 
After I joined, I promptly read a bunch of materials on their website, then I slowly realized that nearly every regional monthly meeting feel on a weekend my family had other events planned. 

Finally, I made it to a monthly meeting in April, then the regional conference in May (last weekend). 

Despite my late adoption into the SCBWI and despite my slowness to actually participate, I really love this group!

So, why join?

1. An excellent, informational, and encouraging newsletter! Really, it's not huge, but it is packed every time with great articles! (I liked this even before I made it to a meeting.)

2. Monthly meetings with encouraging and informational speakers! So, I admit, I've only made it to one of the meetings, but I was super impressed in April, and according to everyone I spoke to, they bring that level every month.

3. An awesome regional conference! The SCBWI WWA in May (just last weekend) was the best writing conference I have ever attended! It had a great variety of informational workshop sessions, encouraging and excellent speakers, and plenty of opportunities to meet fellow creators and industry professionals. By the end of just one day, I had met at least seven fellow creators (writers and illustrators), handed out a few business cards, met an agent (by the snack table), and felt like I'd gained some huge, needed insights into creativity, writing, and traditional publishing.

4. If you are a Young Adult (YA) author, and you fear that the SCBWI is geared only towards MG and PB authors, fear not! They have information and encouragement for all writers who write for ages 1-17.
(Maybe you wouldn't fear this, but I did until I joined because I was thrown by the word "Children" in their name.)

5. If you write Middle Grade (MG), chapter books, or Picture Books (PB), or if you are an illustrator who wants to work on PB or Graphic Novels, the SCBWI also has a information and encouragement for you. At their regional conference, they have a portfolio showcase so you can show off your illustrative work. 

So, if you write or illustrate YA, MG, or PB, are you an SCBWI member? If so, why? If not, why not?

And, if this doesn't apply to you at all, what organizations have you joined to help you in your writing journey?

I'm a part of:
SCBWI - Society of Children Book Writers and Illustrators
PNWA - Pacific Northwest Writers Association (I haven't made any meetings in a while.)
Tuesday Write-In - we don't have an official name, we just show up at a local community center and write for three hours on Tuesdays. 
First and Third Thursdays - A critique group, again, no official name.
And, of course, the IWSG - the Insecure Writer's Support Group (an awesome online group with a blog hop, a website, and platforms on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, and Instagram). 

I think being a part of a group of some kind can help us grow as authors. 
What do you think?


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

If it was the best conference you've ever attended, then that says a lot.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

It's a great organization. I think it gives its members more than some other genre organizations.

Sherry Ellis said...

Glad you joined! I'm a member, too. I like its book birthday program. It's a nice way to get your book in front of other people.

Tyrean Martinson said...

It was really, really good.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Diane - I think so, too.

Tyrean Martinson said...

They have a lot of nice programs.

Natalie Aguirre said...

Glad you joined. I've been a member for decades and have met a lot of fellow writers through the group.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I used to belong to more groups than I do now. Hmm, maybe something to change?

Oh, of course, I'm part of IWSG and happy about that! :)

Patricia Lynne aka Patricia Josephine said...

Sounds like you really benefited from joining.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Natalie - I really wish I had joined a few decades ago, but I am finally figuring things out!

Madeline - A few years ago, I was just involved with IWSG and I was content. Now, it seems like I'm okay with doing a big more. I think we join the groups that work for us.

Patricia - I feel like I opened up new opportunities.