|Me, almost |
over the jet lag
I haven't blogged in absolutely ages: sorry! There's been writing, editing and SO SO much travelling. In fact, I tried to do a google map of the last few months to show you, but google maps refused to cover it all on one map. But I'm staying put for a while, and promised Candy & the Slushies that I would do it this time, oh yes! But the problem is this: there are TWO things I want to blog about. I thought about clever ways to make them look like they belong together, but then just resigned myself to having twins.
Part 1: I get by with a little help from my friends
SCBWI - Scoobies - has been my writing home since 2008. Writing is a solitary business,
and it is easy to get too isolated. I haven't missed a conference since I joined, and have so many friends there now that every year it gets harder to manage to talk to everyone. Through the inevitable ups and downs - both creatively and in the publishing business - having friends who know what you're about and what it is about are invaluable. And this year I was thrilled and honoured that Mind Games won the SCBWI Crystal Kite Award for the British Isles. It was awarded by Lin Oliver at the conference party before the Mass Book Launch.
|Some Scooby Conference Party Catching up!|
From left - Helen Moss, Katie Dale, Nick Cross, & me
2016 has, in so many ways, been a trial. Focusing on what is good and the things I can do helps me find hope for the future, and I tried to get that across in my acceptance speech for the Crystal Kite.
Part of the joy of Scoobies is how supportive we are, and excited and happy we get for each other's successes:
A few days after the conference, we were SO EXCITED to find out that Scooby Patrice Lawrence's debut novel Orange Boy has been shortlisted for a Costa Book Award!
|Patrice & I at the conference.|
Part 2: A double dose of Carnegie Awesomeness: Sarah Crossan and Tanya Landman
|Sarah Crossan (left) & Tanya Landman|
I came across this event with the Bloomsbury Institute, and talked Candy Gourlay into coming along and taking photos.
I enjoyed the evening very much, but didn't take comprehensive notes (sorry) - I had a bad case of Writer's Brain (YES, that really is a thing). But here's a few snapshots from the evening:
1. Sarah: One is a love story about sisters - a love that maybe surpasses romantic love.
2. Tanya: Buffalo Soldier is also a love story ... about a girl and her horse.
3. Sarah: she wrote for ten years on her own - a long apprenticeship - and it takes her years to write a book (Candy was particularly happy to hear this).
4. Tanya: started writing because she was bored staring at puddles for hours with her small children - though it gave time and space to daydream.
5. Sarah: verse suited the story, it wasn't working in prose. And verse allowed her to write in snapshots, she felt less constrained to have a straight time line through the story; she could jump around. Much like I have in writing this blog...
6. Tanya: Winning a Carnegie suddenly gives you gravitas: people are more inclined to listen to what you have to say.
As for me? I came away completely convinced that waving your hands about must be the secret ingredient to winning a Carnegie.
*runs to practise extravagant hand gestures in the mirror*