December 1, 2017

Hi Friends,

I hope you’ll take a minute to notice our new INSIGHT format. We want to pack our monthly digital newsletter with useful information AND make it a treat for your eyes. Thanks to our talented Director of Illustration and Artist Programs, Sarah Baker, for bringing us this new look. Let me also take this opportunity to wish all of our members a happy holiday season and a joyful New Year. May we continue our noble work of making books that bring understanding, compassion, peace, and pleasure to all children and young people.

The Best to You,
Lin Oliver
Happy Book Birthday!
A New SCBWI Program Launches February 1!
We're thrilled to launch a new member benefit -- the Happy Book Birthday program. Beginning in February, 2018, our Happy Book Birthday program invites all members to announce their book at the beginning of the month it is released. Every month, authors and illustrators can send an image of their soon-to-be-published book cover and a 25-word summary... MORE
SCBWI BookStop Reports Successful Results 
This year’s SCBWI BookStop, whose six week run ended on November 30, provided some great consumer exposure for 723 of our member’s new books. Upwards of 31,000 total pageviews demonstrated the public’s interest in our member’s independently and traditionally published books. That’s a lot of traffic---equivalent to having over 5,000 customers a week coming into a retail book store...  MORE
Inaugural Books For Readers Event Hits Home
In November, we attended the first SCBWI Books For Readers celebration event as 1,000 books were donated to Kinship House in Portland, Oregon. (Click HERE for video.) Books For Readers is our new SCBWI initiative in which our members donate their books to two worthy nonprofit organizations. Kinship House, a counseling center providing mental health services to kids in transition from foster care to adoption... MO RE
SCBWI Announces the Narrative Art Award Winner
Congratulations to Dow Phumiruk, winner of the first SCBWI Narrative Art Award. The award, which was judged by a rotating panel of experts, honors illustrators who show excellence incorporating narrative sequence and storytelling in their work. In honor of the 125 th  anniversary of Sherlock Holmes, the first assignment was to depict a mystery story in three illustrations with three unique characters...   MORE
What Makes a Classic Holiday
Book? by Sarah Diamond
Holiday season---that time of year when book sales spike and families give the gift of reading to their children! Some of the most beloved and best-selling childhood stories take place during the winter holidays. We asked booksellers and editors what are the components of a great holiday book and what can authors and illustrators do to fully engage with the holiday season? Brein Lopez, the manager of Children’s Book World in Los Angeles, says “the big thing that makes a classic holiday book is a thematic sense of giving or sharing, with some sort of value that is told through the story.” Donna Wells and Mary Alice Gasbar, respectively director and buyer for the Children and Teen’s department at Politics and Prose Bookstore in Washington, DC, cited Chris Van Allsburg’s 1986 Caldecott winner  The Polar Express  as the gold standard for holiday picture books. MORE
SCBWI Exclusive with...
Krista Marino is a Senior Executive Editor at Delacorte Press. Some recent titles from her list include New York Times bestsellers One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus and Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow. Other books you might recognize from her list are #1 New York Times bestselling author James Dashner’s Maze Runner series, Brandon Sanderson’s bestselling Reckoners series, and Jason Segel’s Nightmares! series, as well as the young adult works of Matt de la Peña, Jennifer Donnelly, and Kara Thomas.

You’ve got an amazing list. What factors do you consider when you add a book to that list? 
Acquisitions is such a personal thing for every editor and it can be a frustrating process...
Illustrator Info
Sarah Jacoby illustrates imaginative worlds, idyllic landscapes, and curious creatures. In 2016, she left her job as a production designer at a children’s app start-up to focus on her freelance illustration career. It was a gutsy move, but it paid off big time when she won the 2016 Winter Conference Portfolio Showcase just days after leaving her job.
Sarah’s prize included a trip to New York for meetings with art directors. Having her name publicized as the showcase winner brought her lots of opportunities even before the trip could be arranged! Grateful for the opportunities the conference opened up for her, Sarah has generously decided to donate her prize. She has directed SCBWI to allocate the money that would have been used for her travel expenses to fund a student illustration scholarship to the 2018 Winter Conference.
Draw This!
Draw This! is our monthly prompt word for illustrators. 

Congratulations to the November winners! The November prompt word was "Comfort"
John Herzog
Katia Wish
There will be no Draw This! for the month of December.
January's prompt word is: "Momentum"
Click Here for Draw This! guidelines
Faces of SCBWI
Want to see your face in Insight ? Send your photos to   or post on twitter using the tag #facesofscbwi
Saho Fujii, Jennifer March Soloway, Emma Ledbetter and Kate McKean at KS/MO conference
Happy Holidays from the SCBWI Staff

Dylan Teut, Lisa Yee, Laurie Halse Anderson, Lin Oliver, and Varian Johnson at NCTE 2017
Jane Yolen and Raven Howell at Warwick Book Festival
Books for Readers event at Kinship House, Portland, OR
2017 Book Launch winner Emma Otheguy signs at SCBWI booth at NCTE