SCBWI+ International events you can attend


The SCBWI+ series highlights advantages of SCBWI membership you might not be aware of. This month, Julie Sullivan writes about attending events outside your home country – in real life, or virtually.

Most SCBWI regions have plenty of useful and fun events to attend. But did you know that you also have access to events in other regions? 

The pandemic jump-started virtual events. The entire world discovered remote working, remote school, remote doctors' appointments and remote conferences. I met some new friends at the 2021 virtual SCBWI conference in New York, and this year we met in person for the first time! 

Much as we all love seeing our friends and meeting new people in person, and are happy that real-life events are gradually returning, virtual events will not be going away. In the past two and  a half years, virtual meetings have boomed. And for disabled writers and illustrators, people who are ill or immunosuppressed, caregivers, parents with small children or special-needs kids, they have been a great boon. We have all enjoyed being able to attend conferences, see lectures, and take part in conversations without having to leave home. And SCBWI is a part of this! 

Creative Commons illustration of virtual meeting (credit:

This means that someone in the British Isles, for example, can attend an event in any other region where there is a SCBWI chapter. You don't necessarily have to be in western Australia or South Carolina to go to a virtual conference or hear an author speak. You have to register, usually, and you often do have to pay online; but now, using your own laptop or desktop computer, or even your mobile, you can take advantage of events you might not have dreamed of attending.

How do you find these virtual and in-person events? The best resource is the SCBWI website. Once you have logged in, you will see Events in the menu bar at the top of the page. Just click there and you can see events from all the different SCBWI regions. Travelling? Why not visit one and meet children's book writers and illustrators from far away? Or maybe you would like to plan your visit to Los Angeles or New York, or a European or Asian city around a SCBWI conference – children's book people are a friendly, welcoming bunch.

For virtual events around the world, click Regional Virtual Events under the main Events heading. For example, these are some of the regional events to check out in October. 

Screenshot from SCBWI Regional Virtual Events page

During the pandemic, I took advantage of virtual meetings to attend lectures and conferences from Hong Kong to Munich to London to New York. A piece of advice: if you do this, download a time-change app onto your mobile (I use TimeBuddy, which I like so much I now pay for an upgraded version) or carefully check the time of the event online on a site such as Time Zone Converter or Time Zone Calculator before you even think of attending. Something that may sound really exciting might take place at 4 a.m. your time! And you need to verify the time on that specific day; daylight savings starts and finishes at different times in different places, and not all regions use it. 


Julie Sullivan is a SCBWI volunteer.

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