Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Spring Fever Annual Conference 2018

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Date(s) - 03/24/2018 - 03/25/2018
8:00 am - 3:00 pm

Embassy Suites-Destiny USA
311 Hiawatha Blvd. West - Syracuse, NY 13204


Please see schedule of events below. Scroll all the way through or you might miss something important. 

Come celebrate Spring with us at our new venue, the newly built Embassy Suites by Hilton Syracuse-Destiny USA, 311 Hiawatha Blvd. West, Syracuse, NY 13204 for our Annual Conference. Also new is our two-day event packed with presentations, workshops, critiques, open mic night, social hour, bookstore, and more. Don’t forget to check out the third new this year: Our traveling sketchbook will be on display!

Registration includes one or two-day conference with Continental breakfast (coffee/bagels), lunch, afternoon snacks, and endless cups of coffee, tea, and water.

If you are vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, or have other dietary restrictions please send Kim an email to after you register.

Critique information is located after the bio of each faculty member offering them. 

Spring Fever Annual Conference:

Linda Sue Park – Keynote Speaker 

Linda Sue Park is the author of several novels and picture books, including A SINGLE SHARD, the 2002 Newbery Medal winner, and the New York Times bestseller A LONG WALK TO WATER. Her most recent titles are the Wing & Claw series, a middle-grade fantasy trilogy, and YAKS YAK, a wordplay picture book. Forthcoming in May 2018 is a collaborative YA novel, FATAL THRONE: The Wives of Henry VIII Tell All. Linda Sue is honored to serve on the Board of Advisors for SCBWI and WNDB. She knows very well that she will never be able to read every great book ever written, but she keeps trying anyway. Visit her website at and follow her on Twitter @LindaSuePark.


Jim Hoover is the Associate Art Director at Viking Children’s Books. A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design in Illustration, Jim has been in publishing now for nearly twenty years. He speaks regularly at SCBWI and has designed and art directed hundreds of books including: PICTURE BOOKS: (Tea Party Rules with K. G. Campbell, Shy with Deborah Freedman, Ella with Marcos Chin, Bus! Stop! with James Yang) NOVELS: (Nnedi Okorafor’s Akata Witch books, Max Brallier’s New York Times best-selling series The Last Kids On Earth) NONFICTION: (National Book Award Finalist Elizabeth Partridge’s,Marching For Freedom, Printz Award-winning John Lennon: All I Want Is the Truth and the up-coming Boots On the Ground, and the children’s book adaptation of Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth.

Jim lives in Brooklyn with his wife.

Jim Hoover will be offering 15 minute in-person illustrator critiques on Sunday. Register for your spot today. Please bring one to three of your best illustrations the day of the event.


Jennifer March Soloway is an associate agent with the Andrea Brown Literary Agency. She represents authors and illustrators of picture book, middle grade, and young adult stories. She enjoys all genres and categories, such as laugh-out-loud picture books and middle-grade adventures, but her sweet spot is young adult. A suspense junkie, she adores action-packed thrillers and mysteries. Throw in a dash of romance, and she’s hooked! But as much as she loves a good thriller, she finds her favorite novels are literary stories about ordinary teens focused on family, relationships, sexuality, mental illness, or addiction. Jennifer is actively building her client list and welcomes queries to To learn more about Jennifer, follow her on Twitter, @marchsoloway, and find her full wish list at

NEW! Story Doctor with Jennifer March Soloway

Use 15-minutes to discuss your idea, story or dummy book with Jennifer March Soloway! You could pitch your work, share a query letter, talk about an issue you’re having with craft, discuss a sticking point in a particular story, go over your submission process to date, or discuss how to find an agent. To make the session even more useful, come with questions or notes on the content you wish to discuss. Come ready to talk! No need to send anything in advance. Register for your spot today.


Arianne Lewin is an Executive Editor at G.P. Putnam’s Sons, an imprint of Penguin Random House USA.

Since joining Penguin Random House in 2010, Arianne has acquired and published the work of the Geisel Award-winning picture book author/illustrator Ethan Long; middle-grade and young adult fiction from New York Times bestselling author Rachel Hawkins; and Rick Yancey’s #1 New York Times and USA Todaybestselling 5th Wave series.

Arianne Lewin will be handling both in-person and written critiques. You can send in 10 double spaced pages, 12 size font no later than February 24, 2018 to Kim at Register for your written or 15 minute in-person critique today.


Sue Heavenrich is an environmental journalist and children’s author with a master’s degree in biology. Her articles for children have been published in Ranger Rick, Highlights, Boy’s Quest, Cobblestone, Wild Outdoor World and Odyssey, and she write the science column, “Archimedes Notebook” for the Ithaca Child newspaper. She is co-author of Diet for a Changing Climate (Lerner Twenty-First Century Books, Aug. 2018),  and her debut picture book, Thirteen Ways to Eat a Fly, will be released by Charlesbridge in fall of 2019.

In addition to writing, Sue develops family STEM programs for her local library and reviews children’s STEM books for print and online. She also volunteers as a citizen scientist for the Great Sunflower Project and the Community Science Institute in Ithaca and is a co-leader for the Ithaca area SCBWI Shop Talks.



Saturday, March 24, 2018

8:00 – 9:00 Registration and Continental Breakfast, bookstore, networking


9:00 – 9:50 Keynote: Linda Sue Park –

The Power of Passion


10:00 – 10:50 Jim Hoover


11:15 – 12:05 Arianne Lewin


12:05 – 1:30 Lunch, bookstore open


1:30 – 3:00 1.   Illustrator Roundtable (Jim Hoover)

2.   Workshop with Linda Sue Park:  The Search for Authenticity

3.   First Pages with Arianne Lewin



3:15 – 4:35 Jennifer March Soloway


Free Time Bookstore will be open


6:00 – 7:00 Social hour with cash bar
7:00 – 9:00 Dinner on your own at Destiny, Hotel, or other


9:00 – 10:30 Open mic: Read from your own work – win a prize!


Sunday, March 25, 2018

8:00 – 9:00 Registration and Continental Breakfast, bookstore open


9:00-2:45 Critiques and Story Doctor sessions running concurrently with workshops


9:00 – 11:00 Linda Sue Park Workshop: revision for novelists. Participants should bring at least 50 pages of a novel-in-progress on a laptop.


Illustrator Speed-Critiques: Bring one piece of artwork (any level of process welcome), get many perspectives! Be prepared to give and get lots of feedback FAST, in a fun lightning-round style critique session for illustrators.


11:00 – 12:30 PAL-Led Roundtable; participants broken up into tables of 6-8, with one PAL at each table representing: Writer/Illustrator/Writer-Illustrator. Participants bring up to 250 words, each read, get feedback from PAL and other participants (4 min. ea.), bookstore open


12:30 – 1:30 Lunch, bookstore open


1:30 – 2:45 Sue Heavenrich – Workshop: “Finding STEM in Unexpected Places”


2:45 – 3:00 Goodbyes and door prizes