Have you ever wondered what SCBWI members are up to across the world? Each month we will be globe-trotting to take a look. This is a perfect chance for us to keep in touch with our SCBWI neighbours. First stop: Miri & her team in ISRAEL
How many members do you have and how often do you meet?
We have a small chapter of SCBWI here in Israel, with around 35 members.
Among them are published and unpublished (yet!) authors and illustrators. We have 3-4 events every year.
We also have within our group, a group for English speakers, of around 15 members who meet once a month. This group meets each time in another member's home and each meeting has a theme, related to writing and illustrating, and each member has to bring something to contribute to the discussion.
We also have a critique group for writers, called The Red Pencil.
Tell us about your latest event...
We just had an exciting event at the Jerusalem International Book Fair. This book fair is always a chance for us to meet with publishing professionals from around the world. This time we met with a publisher from the U.S.A. - Joni Sussman from Kar-Ben Publishing, which publishes Jewish-theme children books.
We met at the Kar-Ben booth, where Joni showed some of their books and talked about the kind of books they are looking for. Then we all sat at a café, for a set of personal meetings with Joni! Each meeting was 5 minutes, in which writers could pitch a manuscript they would like to submit, and illustrators could show their portfolios. The meetings were free of charge, and this opportunity was open only for SCBWI members. We had 13 meetings and they were a huge success, according to the feedbacks, both from our members and from the publisher.
Have there been any author successes in your area recently?
Sure! You can take a look at our website: Israel.scbwi.org and see the success stories of our members during 2014 (Click on the picture of 'Members' Good News'). And our latest good news is our member Devra Lehman who was announced as a winner of the prestige American prize of The National Jewish Book Award for her YA biography of Spienoza.
How would a visiting SCBWI member get in touch with your network?
We LOVE meeting SCBWI friends from around the world! If you plan a visit to Israel, please contact me (Miri Leshem-Pelly, SCBWI Israel RA) at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sarah Broadley joined SCBWI BI in July 2013 and has taken on the role of picture book Eyes and Ears for British Isles South East Scotland.
Sarah mainly writes children's rhyming stories but you may find her from time to time dipping her literary toes into the waters of other genres while sipping coffee and eating chocolate.
You can read more about Sarah here: www.greatbigjar.com