Posted by: Kathy Temean | June 2, 2011

Last Minute Conference Info

Things have been crazy around here, so I do not have time to write a  real blog.  If you have a First Page assigned at the conference, remember to bring 3 copies of one first page.  Start text at the top.  Use 12 point font and 1 inch margins.  Do not put your name on it, but do put a title and indicate if is a picture book, chapter book, middle grade, or young adult novel.

This is the letter I sent out on Wednesday night to the people attending this weekend’s conference.  There are some good points on how to navigate a party with editors and agents that might help everyone.  


By  now, you should have received your individual Schedule and the faculty bios and graphs.  Bios will give you submission guidelines and the graph will give you more detailed information about what each industry professional is interested in receiving.  Here are a few rules to follow with these sheets:

1.  The e-mails shared with you are for submissions only.  Please do not bother the agent with other questions.  They are very busy trying to finish getting ready for the conference.  Tip:  Do not use the e-mail address for questions even after the conference, unless you have developed some type of connection with that person.  Taking advantage of this information will only cause them to ask us not to share this info with our members in the future.  You might think just a little e-mail would not hurt, but if three hundred people all go home on Monday and e-mailed, then it would be quite annoying.  Let’s all try to keep the agents and editors happy and not sorry they shared their information with you.  Our thoughtfulness will help keep their doors open for us.

2.  This information is for your eyes only.  It is not for your blogs.  You paid a lot of money to get this information.  Why should not paying people benefit from what you paid to receive?

3.  If you are now kicking yourself because you didn’t sign up to attend the Mix and Mingle, we will let you sign up at registration.   It starts at 7:30pm.

4.  The Mix and Mingle is a networking opportunity.  It is not a place to whip out your manuscript.   It is not a place to flip through your art portfolio.  It is a place to talk to the editors and agents.  The editors, agents, art directors and artist rep. know why they are there, so it is okay to talk about what you are working on and hand out business cards to people.  Giving out your business card is a good idea, even with fellow writers and illustrators.  You never know where your next lead or opportunity will come from.  Remember to be nice to everyone.  The member who shuns everyone to step over someone else will develop a negative reputation.  Do not monopolize a faculty members time, if you see another SCBWI member waiting.  On the other side, do not butt in when someone else is talking to a faculty member.  Note: Illustrators you may want to hand out a promotional postcard if the opportunity presents itself.

I realize everyone is different and it may be hard for some of you to approach and editor or agent.  If you find that you really wanted to meet a certain editor or agent and they have been alluding you, please find me and ask if I can help introduce you.  Or ask anyone on the conference committee.  Everyone is there to make sure this is the best conference in the industry.

5.  If you have an assigned critique, you may notice it is scheduled during a workshop.  Do not contact us about this.  It is not a mistake.  That is the only way we could fit in over 300 one-on-one critiques. 

6.  Pitch Session:  We did the best we could do to assign an agent who does your type of writing, but at last, there probably are some mistakes.  Feel free to look around for another person who has been assigned a pitch to see if they would like to switch.  At this point there is no time to make changes.

7.  The Book fair on Saturday is another perfect place to meet fellow members, editors, agents and art directors.   Please take some time to look at the published author’s books.  If you can, buy a book and support an author.  When you get a book published you will appreciate it when someone supports you.  We are all in this together.

8.  Remember to bring some extra cash to buy tickets for the Scholarship Raffle.  You can win a ton of things and you can use the tickets to try and win only the items you are interested in getting.   And even better you can win more than one item.

Looking  forward to spending time with you this weekend.  If this is your first time and you are nervous, don’t be.  No one bites.

See you soon,



  1. Whew, am I glad I checked your blog today! For some reason these emails went into my spam folder, when nothing else has — so attendees check your spam folder!


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