Writing Tips

Go the Distance with SCBWI Oklahoma

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2016-Spring-Conference-FlyerOne of the best parts of my writing journey has been discovering the friendship and encouragement of fellow writers. The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) is a national organization dedicated to bringing together the creators and facilitators of wonderful children’s literature. SCBWI has many regional chapters, including here in Oklahoma, that provide networking and learning opportunities to beginning and established writers.

This year, I have the privilege of serving on the publicity committee for the SCBWI Oklahoma Spring Conference. Our theme is “Go the Distance.” As an attendee, you will get a chance to learn from and submit your work to seasoned professionals, such as Sara Sargent, Executive Editor at HarperCollins Children’s Books, and Vicki Selvaggio, Associate Agent with The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency. (more…)

Writing Tips

Find Your Voice

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Voice is that nebulous, often hard-to-define concept that makes your writing sing. At its core, voice reflects the unique lens through with you see the world. Like Neil Gaiman once said, “The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision.” We’ve all heard the old adage that every story has already been told. Editors and agents read hundreds of queries every month, many pitching stories with similar concepts to yours. The only thing you have that nobody on earth can replicate is the unique combination of life experience and DNA that you alone possess. Your voice should come from this deep-down, irreproducible place.


So how do you find your unique voice? Here are a few tips that have helped me along the way: (more…)

Book Raves

The Imaginary: Book Rave

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Never lose your ability to see the extraordinary. That should be the tagline for A.F. Harrold‘s middle grade novel, The Imaginary (illustrated by the fabulous Emily Gravett).

Harrold tells the story of Rudger and Amanda. Amanda is a real girl with a powerful imagination. She dreams up an imaginary Friend named Rudger, and together they go on incredible adventures. True, Amanda bosses him around and sometimes hurts his feelings, but Rudger will always be her Friend, until… (more…)