Your July 2018 SCBWI Houston Newsletter
Upcoming Meeting: July 8, 2019 7-9 PM
Next Month's Meeting: August 5
Please join us on the first Monday of every month from 7-9 p.m. at the Tracy Gee Community Center, 3599 Westcenter, Houston.
This month: Joe Balat:
Changing Course:
Finding Direction in the Arts
Joe will discuss his path through the arts. Starting from a traditional apprenticeship in the fine arts, showing internationally in galleries and museums to switching to illustration and and finding a new path while embracing his earlier experiences and knowledge, Joe's journey will encourage, inform and, or entertain everyone that evening. 
Next month: August 5:

N ote from the Editor
New Format
This month we are experimenting with a new format and delivery system for the newsletter. Let us know what you think, if there are any problems with viewing on your different devices and any suggestions you might have.

Danielle Metcalfe-Chenail prominently featured in Houston Chronicle this week!
The Houston Chronicle featured Alis the Aviator  in its article about aviation and adventure in children's books last wee

Alis the Aviator is set to launch in Houston at the following July events. Come on out for stories, crafts and lots of plane old fun!
  • July 5 @ 930am - Storytime at Lone Star Flight Museum ($5 admission to museum)
  • July 6 @ 11am and 1pm - Lone Star Flight Museum ($5 admission to museum - WW2-era airplanes will be flying, weather permitting)
  • July 20 - Wings and Wheels Event at 1940 Air Terminal Museum (FREE admission!)

More info at
Connie Dowell Releases New YA
The second book in Connie's YA historical mystery novella series released on June 25th. Titled Dead Man's Jazz it is set in Savannah, GA one hundred years ago--almost to the day--in early July 1919. 

Kelly Bennett's Crosstown BOP is on the shortlist for the IDEO Challenge
Out of 508 manuscripts submitted for this year’s IDEO Challenge, mine: CROSSTOWN BOP made the shortlist. Below is the announcement and the link to the winning manuscript and all the finalists—which were partially illustrated by artists as part of the challenge. An incredible process! I encourage everyone to read through the IDEO book challenge criteria—many insightful links about creating books for caregivers to use with children to encourage early childhood literacy! Illustrated by  Nadine Takvorian
Click link below to see the winner and 10 finalists:

Diversity Scholarship Winners Announced

We had wonderful entries for the Diversity Scholarship for our September conference. The judges had a difficult time choosing only two submissions from the talented works of pages and art that we received. However, in the end, they decided on Ehigbor Shultz and  Emily Calimlim as the winners.
Congratulations to both of these ladies, we're looking forward to seeing them at the conference!
Thank you to all of you who entered. The pieces showed the dedication to your craft and in producing the best work possible which bodes well for the future of children's literature. Keep writing and illustrating! —Vicki, Houston RA

Lynne Kelly Featured on Podcast

Lynne was interviewed for the Hear Me Out podcast, which is out of Edinburgh, Scotland & is all about deaf issues. We talked about Song For a Whale and my work as an interpreter. 

Also, Oceanside NY has chosen Song For a Whale as their community-wide read this summer. Lynne will be doing a Twitter chat with them on the morning of August 5th. 
New Book by Deanne Wagner White

Houston children’s author and SCBWI member, Deanne Wagner White, has completed a charming new book titled  How Can They Ever Get Along?  Hot-off the paws of her  Otter Chronicles  trilogy, Deanne’s latest story takes place in her own backyard. Captivating characters of a furried and feathered variety come alive in this vividly illustrated work. Sure to delight and educate, one can only wonder what’s next for this aspiring artist! Here’s a hint: hee-haw. 

KHOU's Turn the Page literacy initiative has been featuring many of our members' work being read online on Facebook Live by KHOU newscasters. Among those who's work has been featured are Mary D Wade, Dotti Enderle, Megan and Jorge Lacera, Angie Stubbs, among others. If your book has been read online, let us know!
A note to those attending Diandra Mae's art Saturdays.
I wanted to let everyone know I will be out of town for most of July, but I have reserved a room at Tracy Gee Community Center on August 3rd from 10:00am-1:00pm. (I tried booking an earlier date, but they didn't have anything open.)

We will be discussing the picture book dummy project those of you who are registered for the fall conference's illustrator intensive are working on, and offering critiques about portfolios, dummies, and other works in progress. We'll also talk about post cards for fall mailers as well as conference promos. 
The time we have is not a requirement for participation. I simply set it that long to ensure we have enough time for critiques and such. 
(I know the 3rd is the deadline for the conference homework, but if you come to this meet up, I'll extend your deadline until midnight on Sunday, Aug 4th.) 

Kristen Kiesling has signed with agent Karen Grencik of Red Fox Literary.
2019 E-Critique Faculty member Kelsey Horton has been promoted to Editor at Delacorte Press from associate editor.
Literary Organization Pairs Seasoned Editors
with Diverse Writers
Now in its second year of sponsoring a mentorship program for diverse writers, The Word, A Storytelling Sanctuary has selected three children’s writers to partner with editors from Little, Brown Books for Young Readers to revise and fine-tune their manuscripts.  One of the editors is a past Houston Faculty: Nikki Garcia.

Early Bird Registration ends July 20 at midnight. 
Conference logo art by   Marissa Valdez

We have been busy to make this our best year ever! Here are just a few of items up for bids on September 28th at our conference:

Tickets to Shlitterbahn, SeaWorld of Texas, Houston Zoo, Houston Museum of Natural Science, Children's Museum of Houston, InnerSpace Caverns, Urban Air, Cynthia Mitchell Woods Pavillion, Air Terminal Museum, Scream World,Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Main Street Theater,and more.
Wine Tastings
Autographed award-winning titles
Subscriptions to Scrivener
Catering service by La Madeleine
Dental kit with Platinum Sonicare toothbrush
St. Arnold's Gift Basket
Writers Retreats
Knitting kit
Doggie Baskets
Baskets of cultural delights from Peru, France, Mexico...

Support our chapter! Please consider donating items for baskets to help fund our scholarships and activities. Ask local merchants. Many local businesses are happy to help out! To donate contact:

Time is running out to register for the LA19 Summer Conference. This year’s event will include keynotes from Pura Belpre and Caldecott Honor winner Yuyi Morales, National Book Award winner and Feed superstar M.T. Anderson, Newbery Medal winner Meg Medina, and a rare U.S. appearance from picture book legend Mem Fox. 

The conference also features 72 breakout sessions that give authors and illustrators the opportunity to learn the craft and business of children’s book publishing directly from acquiring agents and editors.
Nearly 700 members have already claimed spaces, so act fast while tickets remain. Early registration ends on July 17.
When: August 9-12 with optional intensives on Monday, August 12
Where: JW Marriott at LA Live

Texas Teen Book Festival
October 12, 2019 Southwestern University
An annual event featuring 30–40 authors (from Texas and beyond) whose books have been published in 2019 for a teen audience. Authors chosen for the event will participate in a panel or a special session.  Learn more and register here.

Writer-to-Writer Series
July 13, 2019 at 2 p.m. – September 30, 2019 at 2 p.m. (Eastern Time)
We’re talking to 3 professional writers in July, August, and September about the nitty-gritty details of the publishing industry and actually making money doing what you love. Jen Doll, Alisa Kwitney, and KL Going will all discus different aspects of the path to publishing and making a living as an author.
How do you best promote your work in the internet age?
How is writing Graphic novels different that writing novels?
And how do you stay sane and make money?
Cost: 3 Webinars for $30 for SCBWI Members
Cost: 3 Webinars for $40 for NON-Members
Hosted by SCBWI Eastern NY
WEBINAR: Subtexts & Subplots:
How to Deepen and Energize Your YA/MG Fiction with Deborah Halverson

She's also doing critiques after the webinar. Hosted by Austin SCBWI
WEBINAR: Understanding Genres and Sub-Genres in MG and YA Novels

July 18, 2019 at 7:00 PM CST
This will be a dive into the many genres and sub-genres, and some of their specific writing techniques, word choices, and patterns, of middle grade and young adult novels. Catherine Wallace, HarperCollins Editor, will answer questions like, “What makes a novel a goth, bizarro or horror fiction?”; “What is visionary fiction?”; “What makes a novel literary fiction?”; and “What is the difference between fantasy and magical realism?”
$25 for members and $45 for non-members. You can also purchase a 5-page critique for an extra $20.
Hosted by Oklahoma SCBWI 
An Ongoing and Updated List of Webinars
The Nevada SCBWI chapter has a new feature listing and updating webinars of interest to our members. Be sure to bookmark this page to stay abreast of new opportunities...

Austin's Cynthia Leitich Smith Is Compiling
an ever growing list of Texas children's-YA
authors and Illustrators.
Howdy! Texas is bursting with talented children’s-YA book creators.
Once again, my Cynterns and I are updating the ever-growing list of 
Texas children’s-YA authors and illustrators at:
It’s a popular resource for event planners, gatekeepers and Texas book lovers.
Please share widely and/or reply to  with new 
listings or updates to existing listings.
Those who currently live in Texas or have previously lived in Texas are 
eligible for inclusion.
Please reply with byline, official website URL, preferred titles to 
highlight, and current city and/or state of residence.

Good Reads
From SCBWI Pro Insider: 
The Golden Age of Children’s Nonfiction
Right now, more than ever, is the best time to be an
author of children’s nonfiction.
Torn apart: the vicious war over young adult books: 
Authors who write about marginalised communities are
facing abuse, boycotts and even death threats.
What is cancel culture doing to young adult fiction?

From BookBub: 45+ Author Websites with Stellar Designs
Many successful authors have websites that are the hub of their online marketing activity — they provide a central platform for everything from blogging to book sales and email newsletters. But what should you include in an author website?

Booklife First Lines June 2019
 "It was a dark and stormy night” is not one of them!
Booklife: How to Avoid Self-Publishing SCAMS
Being able to identify when a particular service is overcharging—or just overpromising what they are actually able to deliver i s an important skill for any author to master.
Chapter Events

Monthly Meetings
When: Meetings are held on the first Monday night of each month (first Tuesday if first Monday is a holiday), 7-9 pm. Fiction, Nonfiction and Illustration critique groups meet from 6-7pm.
What: All regular monthly meetings are open to all at no cost or obligation. To suggest speakers or topics and/or to be added to our monthly meeting reminder e-mail list, contact Program Coordinator via our Contact Us page.
Where: The meetings are held at the Tracy Gee community center, located at 3599 Westcenter Dr, Houston, TX 77042-521

September 3 (Tuesday) - National SCBWI Conference Recap
October 7 - An Agent & Author's Perspective of Intellectual Properties: Contracts, Clauses, Foreign Rights & More with Ann Rose, Agent & Author
November 4 - The Illustrated Biography of an Illustrator & Muralist by Bill Ferguson
December 2 - Self-Publishing: 1st Impressions, Book Trailers, Editing, Promoting & More
Our Staff

Regional Advisor:
Asst. Regional Advisor:
Lynne Kelly
Illustrators Coordinator:
2016 Conference Chairs:
Lynne Kelly
Mary Riser
Monthly Program Chairs:

Listserv Coordinator:
Twitter Coordinator:
Newsletter & Website
Art Credit
Header Design:
Join our conversations on the  SCBWI Texas discussion board Please send your author/illustrator news for the next newsletter to Bruce Foster by the 25th of the month at   b

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