tips

First Pages with Heather Flaherty and Maggie Lehrman

By Orel Protopopescu

Heather Flaherty, a Literary Agent at the Bent Agency, and Maggie Lehrman, a Senior Editor at Abrams Books for Young Readers, (as well as a YA novelist) addressed a rapt crowd at the Huntington Public Library on October 16, 2016 as part of SCBWI Metro NY’s On-the-Road series.   Rapidly making their way through a pile of first pages, ranging from picture books to YA fiction, they were in remarkable accord, zeroing in on what made (or detracted from) an opening that worked.  Published writers and beginners benefited from their expertise.

(more…)

The Top Ten Things to Look for Before You Hire a Freelance Editor

by Annina Luck Wildermuth

You’ve completed a draft of your book and want professional help with taking it to the next level. Plenty of freelance editors provide this service, but how do you know who is right for you? Sangeeta Mehta and Maya Rock presented a concise overview of the “freelance editing ecosystem” on June 14 for the last Tuesday Professional Series before Summer break.

(more…)

History Through a Child’s Eyes: Rita Williams-Garcia

Writer Rita Williams-Garcia and moderator Gina Carey

Writer Rita Williams-Garcia and moderator Gina Carey

By Adria Quiñones

“Talk about children’s books?” author Rita Williams-Garcia chortled to our moderator, middle grade writer and SCBWI Metro NY Steering Committee member Gina Carey, as the May Professional Series conversation began. “Try and stop me!”
(more…)

How To Be a Writer Without Losing Your MIND

Literary agent and YA author John Cusick of Folio Jr.As an agent who is also a writer, John Cusick (@JohnMCusick) of Folio Jr. knows what it’s like to juggle the demands of a day job and an artistic pursuit alongside a personal life. At our March Professional Series lecture, Cusick told the intertwined story of how his becoming an agent led to him become a published author (of the YA novels Girl Parts and Cherry Money Baby), and what he’s learned in trying to manage his own life.
(more…)

A Practical Guide To World-Building

by Adria Quiñones

FullSizeRenderHenry Neff, author/illustrator of The Tapestry series of contemporary MG fantasy novels and our guide to world-building, began the October Professional Series lecture with an intriguing fact: J.R.R. Tolkien created the languages of Middle Earth before he imagined the world. “The invention of languages is the foundation,” Tolkien wrote. “The ‘stories’ were made rather to provide a world for the languages than the reverse. To me a name comes first and the story follows.”

(more…)

How To Self Publish Your Book With Neil Waldman

by Adria Quiñones

Writer and illustrator Neil Waldman has published more than 50 children’s books. He’s won major awards, including the Christopher Award, the National Jewish Book Award, the School Library Best Book Award and the American Library Association Notable Award. To the attendees at SCBWI’s December Professional Series, he’s made it. So, after working with major publishing houses, why would he turn to self-publishing?

The answer is wrapped up in Waldman’s life history, which is echoed in his latest book. If Al and Teddy is the story of a young artist exploring his creative powers, the story of the publication of Al and Teddy is that of a man in search of a way to support young artists.

(more…)