Report on SCBWI Conference, LA 2017


As with any SCBWI event, the 2017 SCBWI Conference in LA was a coming together of a wonderful community of children’s book creators. Over 1,000 delegates from over twelve countries joined for the three-day conference which was made up of renowned keynote speakers, panel discussions, craft sessions and workshops.

Over half the delegates were unpublished (or pre-published) and there were options for new, emerging and experienced writers and a dedicated stream for illustrators. Manuscript critiques were available for writers and the portfolio showcase provided illustrators with the opportunity to put their work in front of editors, agents and publishers.

The sheer numbers of people involved in the conference meant that the social events could be daunting, but everyone involved was welcoming, friendly and incredibly helpful.

As a SCBWI ARA and volunteer, I facilitated a two of the breakout sessions, which were led by a respected editor, agent, author or illustrator. All the sessions, including the keynotes, were entertaining, informative and professionally delivered.

The conference provided a wonderful opportunity to connect with others who share a love of children’s books, and I have found people in the industry, wherever they are from, to be approachable and generous.

SCBWI conferences take place all over the world and details can be found on the SCBWI website. So why not consider signing up for a SCBWI conference? It will be an investment in your creative career.

Caz Goodwin

ARA, Australia East and New Zealand