Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Ten-Minute Blog Break - 31st January

Logo by Melany Pietersen
Nick Cross writes:
In the wake of another fortnight of turbulent international events, it seems a little self-indulgent to talk about such "small" subjects as writing and illustrating for children. But these things are vitally important - both for our own sanity as creative people and to help the next generation make better choices than those currently in power!

Monday, 30 January 2017

Welcome New Members of SCBWI UK!

New member of SCBWI UK? Welcome! 

The best thing about SCBWI is the people. You may not realise all the places where you can meet other SCBWI writers and illustrators–from meetings to conferences to ‘scrawl crawls’, forums, masterclasses and volunteer work (highly recommended!). But suppose you live in a remote place, are a carer, ill, have small children or a demanding job, or just don’t have time or money to get away? Do you know about SCBWI’s online resources? They’re a way to connect with other people who love children’s books.

Sunday, 29 January 2017

From your editors: this week in publishing

Co-editor Ellie Brough muses on the goings on in the publishing industry this week...

A phrase that keeps cropping up in the SCBWI online sphere at the moment is cultural appropriation. Every week, a new article discussing cultural appropriation crops up online and the comments flood in with clashing opinions: some nuanced; some ill-informed; some, unfortunately, just plain ignorant.

Friday, 27 January 2017

10 Steps to Becoming a Papercutter

Illustration based on paper cutting is enjoying a renaissance of interest in the UK, with illustrators using intricate paper-cut techniques at the forefront of publishing. One illustrator enjoying particular success is  Jessica Palmer, here she runs through the basics. 

Thursday, 26 January 2017

London Industry Insiders Event Report: An Evening with Amber Caraveo and Clelia Gore - 16 January 2017

Panel: Clelia Gore, Amber Caraveo 
with host Mandy Rabin
Photo: Allison Friebertshauser
London Industry Insiders kick-started 2017 with a fantastic event last week at The Savoy Tup. SCBWI were fortunate to welcome an agent from the UK and one from across the pond to discuss children's publishing across the world. Cathy Bee was in attendance and reports back on the inspiring evening.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Refugee Memories - by Julie G Fox

Julie G Fox gives a personal account of being a child refugee and explains how this experience motivated her to write Goodbye, Emma, set up Clever Fox Press and write books for refugee children.

Monday, 23 January 2017

Favourite Childhood Books

Children’s writers are the most influential of all writers. 

No one cares about a book as much as a child, who often almost memorises his or her favourite. Do you remember that? If you were a child who liked to read (some come to it later), you know how much those childhood favourites influence your life. 

What were your favourite books when you were a child?

Saturday, 21 January 2017


Gary Sheppard
Great News for Gary Sheppard. It is such a delight to be able to share with our readers Gary Sheppard's great news.

Gary writes:

I would like to share the great news with everyone that my debut picture book - As Nice as Pie - is celebrating its book birthday on 28 November on Maverick Arts Publishing.

Friday, 20 January 2017

Remembering Babette Cole

The Children's book world was rocked this week by the sad news of the death of Babette Cole, acclaimed author/illustrator of Princess Smartypants and over 70 other children's titles. Babette was a good friend of SCBWI - she was a keynote speaker at the 2008 Bologna SCBWI Conference and continued as an SCBWI member thereafter for some years. Here in tribute are a few words from some of us who knew her.

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Proofreading Tips: What's in a Name?

Header courtesy of
The SCBWI Conference Fringe is a series of popular sessions held on the afternoon before the Conference commences. For the November 2016 Conference I hosted What's in a Name? - a ‘guided chat’ on what you might consider when naming a character.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Ten-Minute Blog Break - 17th January

Logo by Melany Pietersen
Nick Cross writes:
Welcome back to the Blog Break, which will be appearing fortnightly from now on. I have to admit to being a bit daunted by the task of writing this first instalment, because it feels like I'm starting again from scratch. So do excuse me if this week's salvo contains more links than you can get through in ten minutes!

Monday, 16 January 2017

Reading between the lines

Gabe reading, by Jason CC BY ND 2.0

By K. M. Lockwood, @lockwoodwriter

Books within books - what lies beneath reading in stories. How and why would you use that in your own work.

Sunday, 15 January 2017

New Year; New Team... Part 2

This week co-editor Claire Watts welcomes our new regular feature writers to the Words & Pictures team. Let’s have a huge round of applause for all our fabulous new volunteers!

And don’t forget, if YOU have anything you'd like to contribute to Words & Pictures, you can contact us using the address at the bottom of this email.

Saturday, 14 January 2017


A Strange Celebration for Danny Pearson, Steve Beckett and Tim Collins. We are starting the New Year celebrating how authors can help reluctant readers. Badger Learning have created a new series of books for kids who need a small nudge when it comes to enjoying books! The eight books in the new Strange Town series are sure to delight a whole new generation of middle grade readers.

Friday, 13 January 2017

Featured Illustrator: Bing Wang

Our first Featured Illustrator for 2017 is Bing Wang. One of the illustration winners of the 2016 Undiscovered Voices anthology, Bing's creative journey has taken her from one side of the Atlantic to the other, resulting in a tight graphic style using digital and traditional media. See more of her work in the Featured Illustrator Gallery.

Thursday, 12 January 2017

School Visits Skills Share with Benjamin Scott and Helen Moss - 28 January 2017

Helen Moss thinking about
doing a school visit!

School visits are something that many authors worry about. After all it's not part of the job description is it? Some of us would much rather be sitting at our desks working on our latest WIP, than arranging bookings, organising insurance or even managing a rowdy crowd of school children. 

Well SCBWI has some great news! There are still some tickets available for an insightful skills share session focusing on school visits in Cambridge later this month. 

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Join the SCBWI Blog Network!

Logo by Melany Pietersen
Nick Cross writes:
As a certain Sherlock villain likes to say, "Did you miss me?"
After a whole year away, the Ten-Minute Blog Break returns next Tuesday, highlighting the very best blog posts from SCBWI-BI members. But how does your blog get considered for inclusion? Read on to find out...

Monday, 9 January 2017

Stay safe online

Do you write sometimes in public spaces–cafes, trains or train stations, airports or schools? 

If you write with a pencil or pen and a notebook, good for you! All you have to worry about is making sure to take them with you when you go.

If you write on a laptop, though, and use wifi sometimes while you work, you should know a few basic security rules.

Sunday, 8 January 2017

New Year; New Team ... Part 1

Claire Watts @evangelinecluck
As 2017 begins, Words & Pictures welcomes a huge surge of new talent to the team. So many new faces, in fact, that it’s going to take two posts to do them all justice! First up, new co-editor, Claire Watts, introduces the new editors on the team.

Saturday, 7 January 2017

Super Success for Swapna

One of my highlights of 2016 was reading debut author Swapna Haddow's Dave Pigeon book. One of my first comments after reading the book was, 'Dave would make an awesome series.' Well, obviously the publishers agreed because the next Dave Pigeon book is out soon and I can't wait to read it. I particularly love the illustrations of Dave, Sheena Dempsey is so marvellously talented.

Thursday, 5 January 2017

Agent Confidential: Clelia Gore

Name: Clelia Gore

Agency:  Martin Literary Management, Seattle, Washington, USA

Genres represented: 

Fiction and nonfiction picture books, middle grade and young adult books.

Monday, 2 January 2017

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

A whole, fresh new year to make your mark on the world. 

What are your New Year's wr
iting or illustrating resolutions?

Sunday, 1 January 2017