Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Writers’ Day 2018 Discovering Your Path to Publication

Date(s) - 10/13/2018
9:00 am - 4:30 pm

California Lutheran University, Preus-Brandt Forum
60 W. Olsen Road - Thousand Oaks, CA 91360

Doors Open at 8:00 am
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 13, 2018   9:00 – 4:30




Sarah Jane Abbott,
Assistant Editor at Paula Wiseman Books &
Beach Lane Books

“Have a Heart: Writing Picture Books
with a Message in Mind”

Hannah Mann,
Junior Agent at Writers’ House

“Seeking Perfection Through Imperfection:
Character Flaws”

Allison Moore,
Editor, Bloomsbury Children’s Books

“What’s Your Big Story Idea?”

Lorin Oberweger,
Agent, Adams Literary

“Tension & Desire:
How Your Character’s Deepest Longings
Make for Page-Turning Fiction”



Carol Heyer

Happy LaShelle

Andrea Loney 

Terry Pierce


Additional Critique-Only Faculty: Mary Hershey & Lee Wardlaw


*New* Free Follow Up Webinar

In this FREE 90 minute webinar, agent Lorin Oberweger will extend her Writers’ Day “Tension and Desire” talk exclusively for Writers’ Day attendees. You’ll be given a link to view the webinar live on 10/27 or the recording from 10/27 through 11/3. The recording will not be available after 11/3/18.

Free Writing Contest

Enter up to two unpublished submissions (must be two different categories: picture book, middle grade or young adult) via email. Fill out the 2018 CONTEST SUBMISSION FORM and email it along with your entry (2 attachments) to no later than end of day Wednesday, September 5, 2018. In the subject line give your last name and category (pb, mg or ya).  If you’re entering two manuscripts send them separately, each with the contest form attached. Your name should only appear on the contest submission form–it must be removed from your manuscript including page headers/footers–or your entry will be disqualified. Please send as a word document (preferred) or PDF. 


Picture book
Send whole, double-spaced manuscript (text only, no dummies or pictures) 12 point font.

Middle grade or young adult
Send up to 10 double-spaced pages in 12 point font with one single-spaced synopsis pasted as the 11th page.

NOTE: Regardless of whether your entry is fiction, non-fiction or poetry decide which age group it belongs in (pb, mg, or ya). Judges reserve the right NOT to give awards. You must be pre-registered and present to win. Contest manuscripts will NOT be returned. If you have questions about the contest please contact Rebecca at


Free Illustrator Portfolio Showcase

Illustrators – You are invited to display a 16″ x 20″ vertical, self-standing “gallery” of your
work. No handouts on the table. Brochures and “gallery” must be contained in the same display. Indicate your participation at the time of registration and bring the gallery with you to Writers’ Day. Contact Illustrator Coordinator Laura-Susan Thomas at  with questions. 

Free Editors’ Panel and First Pages

Anonymous first pages will be randomly selected and read aloud to the audience, followed by comments from guest speakers. Bring FIVE copies of the opening page of ONE manuscript for our First Pages Panel (double-spaced, 12 point font, begin 1/3 down the page) paper-clipped together. Identify the genre (pb, mg or ya) but DO NOT INCLUDE YOUR NAME. Drop off at the registration table. 

Manuscript and Dummy Critiques

Please read very carefully as our procedure has changed. This year we’re piloting a program to allow you to choose who critiques your manuscript. Each critiquer has personal preferences about which categories they will read and slots are limited.  Critiques MUST be purchased when you register. There will be no add-ons or changes accepted later.  It is up to you to read carefully what type of manuscripts each person will accept. PB stands for picture books. MG stands for middle grade. YA stands for young adult. Only send in a dummy if you are both the author and illustrator. Only one reviewer is accepting dummies. Some reviewers will accept non-fiction while others will not. Written critiques are $45 and available for SCBWI members only. They will be distributed at the end of the day.

Send the full picture book manuscript or dummy, OR up to 10 pages plus the synopsis pasted at the end as the 11th page of a middle grade or young adult manuscript. This offer is available only to registered Writers’ Day participants who attend the event and is limited to one critique per person. You must pay for your critique at the time of registration–you can NOT add it on later. There are no refunds on critiques. Fill out the 2018 CRITIQUE SUBMISSION FORM and paperclip it to your manuscript.  Critique entries must be postmarked by Wednesday, September 5, or they will be disqualified. Do not send via registered mail or any method that requires a signature. If you have any questions about critiques please contact Angela Russell at


Members are invited to bring one recently published book for display as well as promotional materials such as postcards. SCBWI CenCal is not responsible for any lost items.

LUNCH is included in the price of admission for those who register by September 30.

MAP Click here for Cal Lutheran map   Look for Preus-Brandt Forum.

REFUND POLICY  Registrations cancelled before September 30 will receive a refund less $20 service charge.  No refunds given for cancellations after September 30. No refunds given or changes accepted on critiques at any time.

QUESTIONS For general questions about Writers’ Day contact Regional Advisor Rebecca Langston-George

To receive the SCBWI Member price and all options make sure you are logged in to the SCBWI site prior to registering. 

This event is sold out. 


This event is fully booked.