SCBWI is a national professional organization for children’s writers and illustrators. There are annual dues, which entitles you to a bi-monthly bulletin, reference literature and lists at minimal cost, and discounts to SCBWI-sponsored events and conferences. For more information, check the website
The Children’s Book Council (CBC) is a non-profit trade organization dedicated to encouraging literacy and the use and enjoyment of children’s books, and is the official sponsor of Young People’s Poetry Week and Children’s Book Week each year. The Council’s members include U.S. publishers and packagers of trade books for children and young adults. On its website, you can find up-to-date information on which publishers are accepting manuscripts and artwork.
A monthly newsletter filled with facts and tips about publishing and marketplace news (both books and magazines). For subscriptions, call 1-800-443-6078.
www.VerlaKay.com - a fabulous website for children’s writers and illustrators
These annual reference books available at major bookstores begin with the information needed to submit a professional manuscript and follow with detailed information on the needs, requirements, and contacts of the big publishing houses.
*Children’s Writer’s & Illustrator’s Market
*Children’s Writer Guide to (Year)
Several local institutions (such as the Memorial Art Gallery, Writers & Books, RIT) offer relevant classes, seminars, lectures, reference materials, and exhibitions. Local libraries and bookstores not only offer many wonderful books for children but books on writing and illustrating for children as well.
Some RACWI authors have websites with tips on writing. Check out:
Also check the website for the Rochester Children’s Book Festival with links to many other author websites.
Written by Roxane Chadwick and Staff
Mary Jane Auch and Nancy Kraus created RACWI in 1989. Since then, Rochester Area Children’s Writers & Illustrators (RACWI) has provided professional networking, education, and support to people who are seriously pursuing a career in publishing for children.
Our members now number more than 80, range from hope-to-be published writers and illustrators to nationally known, award-winning authors and illustrators, and are interested in every genre of children’s books. To promote literacy, libraries, and its published members, RACWI presents the annual Rochester Children’s Book Festival.
RACWI Mission Statement
Rochester Area Children’s Writers & Illustrators provides coordinated monthly
meetings to share knowledge about writing and illustrating for children and information regarding the publishing process. Our goal is to help those writers and illustrators seeking publication in the field of children’s writing and illustrating and those already published to improve their craft through quality programs and workshops, critique groups, and the
RACWI Reports newsletter.
WHO MAY JOIN
RACWI welcomes authors and illustrators who seek to improve their craft, to publish in the field of children's writing and illustrating, and those who are already published.
General Group Guidelines
As reflected by our mission statement, RACWI is here for authors and illustrators to learn about the craft of writing and illustrating for children. Sometimes we have authors, agents, or editors as our guest speakers. We are also honored to have several distinguished members of our organization who attend meetings regularly. Also, RACWI members share their know-ledge of the craft of children's writing by presenting at a meeting. The following general etiquette guidelines are adapted from Donna Bowman Bratton's piece for the 2014 SCBWI conference in Los Angeles.
• Read books by our published authors and our guest speakers.
• Familiarize yourself with books agented or edited by guest speakers. You'll gain
insight into their tastes and determine if sending a query is appropriate. Good places
to find such information:
1. Agent's or editor's websites and blogs and on-line interviews.
2. Acknowledgment sections in books.
4. Casey McCormick's blog which spotlights different agents.
5. Publisher's Marketplace which lists editors and agents for specific titles and
newly reported sales.
6. The Children's Writers and Illustrator's Market Guides.
7. SCBWI, The Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators.
• When we have guest speakers, come prepared with questions for Q&A sessions, about featured books, about process and craft, about submission possibilities. Be brave and
raise your hand.
• Be prepared to take notes and/or bring a highlighter.
• Leave your manuscript at home. Practice your elevator pitch out loud. Think one-minute summary.
• Bring business cards to share with fellow members. You never know when you might meet your next critique partner.
• After meetings, follow up: touch base with your new friends. Say thank you for any
advice or critiques.
• Harness your new found inspiration and vigor and dive right into your projects!
• Stalk fellow members or guests, or interrupt a conversation between a writer or guest and another member. Wait your turn.
• Forget that these folks are people too. Be respectful, friendly, and always remember the golden rule.
RACWI meets once a month from September-June. There are no meetings in July and August. Only existing members of RACWI are invited to the holiday party in December. If you are interested in attending a RACWI meeting or if you would like to join RACWI, please contact Roxane Chadwick at email@example.com for more information. Guests may be invited (one time only please). Our meetings typically begin with 15 minutes or so of socializing and sharing news, followed by a planned program led by RACWI members or guest speakers. Presenters receive small honoraria. Each year we try to include a similar slate of topics, including Brilliant Beginnings (sharing first pages of mss), First Art (sharing new artwork), Awards Night (discussing the previous year’s Newbery and Caldecott winners), plus writing workshops and illustrator presentations.
Our monthly newsletter, is emailed to all members each month describing the upcoming meeting and offers news about our members.
RACWI Membership Fees
Program fees cover honorariums and other minor expenses. They are due no later than the October meeting for returning members. New members may join throughout the year. Annual fees are $35.00.
Rochester Children's Book Festival (Website)
▪ To be granted table space, our authors/illustrators must be active RACWI members who contribute their time and talents to RACWI programming and/or RCBF preparations at some point throughout the year. There are many opportunities to volunteer.
▪ Criteria: Authors/Illustrators must be published by companies on SCBWI’s PAL list (https://www.scbwi.org/list-of-pal-publishers/) unless otherwise specified. At this time, table space at the Rochester Children’s Book Festival is reserved for traditionally published authors and illustrators who have been a member for at least one year.
▪ Festival slots fill quickly, so it is imperative that you indicate your interest by the deadline indicated. No author/illustrator is guaranteed to be at the Festival every year.
For more information
about joining RACWI
Kathleen Blasi, Co-President
Andrea Page, Co-President
Vicki Dodd Schultz
Vivian Vande Velde
Vivian Vande Velde
Annie Zygarowicz, Zygdesignz Studio
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