SCBWI (Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators). I went into this conference feeling rather proud of myself. Head held I high, I thought to myself, I am a writer. I signed the registration sheet, recieved my packet of information, and sat down at one of the big tables, ready for action. I soaked up the information presented by agents, editors and successful published authors. I realized when they read my manuscript during the critique session that maybe, just maybe I have more work to do. I left a little down hearted and not as optimistic as I had been when I entered. I came home, chucked my entire manuscript. The manuscrip I thought any publisher in their right mind should publish. I realized I had a lot of work to do, it's not as easy as most people think! Now, I find myself drafting and redrafting. I have gone through almost an entire spiral pad trying to rethink my Easy Reader of not more than 2,000 words. Not only do I have to make sure that I have a beginning, middle and end - I have to have a plot to capture an 8 year old! I went on line to some of my favorite writing sites. I found this great article at the Writer Magazine site: 11 Mistakes Beginning Children's Writers Make . I went on line and re-read several of the on-line newsletters and advice pages at the Children's Book Insider and I searched the SCBWI website for more help and advice.
What I have decided, is that I need to take the information and knowledge I have learned - USE IT! I also need to stay connected with other writers, join critique group, read books like a writer, find books in my genre and read, read, read! Stay away from rhyming or poetry type books unless you're a poet, try to stay away from words that end in "ly". For instance slowly could be replaced by dawdle. Use an active voice not a passive voice -- action - action -action. My head is spinning! Or should it by my head is twisting around on my neck????