Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Table Talk Sessions 2017












The table talk format gives writers and illustrators the opportunity to meet in small, informal groups focused on particular topics. The format is flexible, with each presenter deciding the amount of group interaction. Sessions may be oriented toward discussion, teaching craft, or sharing insight and information. You will be at a round table with up to nine people. Please make one choice for session #1 and one choice for session #2. Sessions will close when filled to capacity.

Session #1

Submission Basics: What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You (Stephanie Oakes)

Ready to submit your story to an agent or editor? It's important to understand industry standards of behavior and how to write a query letter. Bring your query letter for feedback. 

Work-for-Hire and Magazine Writing (Rachel Hamby)

Learn about work-for-hire projects and discover how you can write for the education market.  We'll also discuss  children's magazines, what they're looking for and how to submit. 

Nonfiction Picture Books (Annette Bay Pimental)

In recent years, trade publishers have embraced nonfiction picture books. At this table talk, we’ll look at recently-published books to show what these editors look for in nonfiction for young readers.

Understanding the Undertows of Edgy YA (Amber Keyser)

Deep currents swirl through modern young adult literature—death, sex, abuse, drugs. Are there limits to what you can talk about in YA? Does YA have to be dark? Are there undertows that can sink a project? Join Amber J. Keyser (author of several admittedly dark YA novels) to discuss the edge of YA.

Understanding Amazon (Dannielle Annett)

The Top 10 things you should know about Amazon to kick butt, sell more books, and become recognized.

Being Seen: Options for Online Portfolios (Kary Lee)

This session will take a look at the many options for online portfolios such as website, blogs, social media sites, or a combination. Kary will lead a discussion about why one method might be easier or better than another and walk through some examples of successful sites. Illustrators will share how they set up and maintain their online portfolio- what works and what challenges they have. Bring your questions.


Session #2

I've Written a Picture Book, Now What? (Annette Bay Pimentel)

This session will cover when and where to find an agent, how to submit to publishers, and tips on determining the right path for you and your book. There will also be time for questions.

Navigating Uncharted Waters (Amber Keyser)

Our readers are diverse yet our industry is overwhelming dominated by middle-aged, white women. Join this frank discussion of how we can enter uncharted waters, write stories that support ALL of our readers, and be allies for diversity in our community.

Building suspense in Fiction (Stephanie Oakes)

Social Media for Authors (Dannielle Annett)

Getting Social. How to use social media to develop your platform, build an audience, capture more readers, and sell more books. Get Social and learn why social media isn’t optional anymore.

Building Your Platform and Launching Your Book (Mary Cronk Farrell)

Building your platform begins well before you've finished writing your book. Join this discussion about platform and book launches to take the next step in helping readers find your books in the vast ocean of written material available online.

Being Seen: Who Do I Target and Why? (Kary Lee)

Marketing is a very general term, and what we need to do under the marketing umbrella can and will be different for each of us.  Kary will break down the phases of marketing illustrators need to understand, and provide examples and suggestions for who they need to target, such as agents or art directors, in each part of the process.

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