I’m really excited to announce that I’ve been awarded two writerly residencies! They’re set for December 2020 and September 2021, which I suspect will be here before I know it, but I’m thrilled with that because residencies are actually a dream come true for me. Allow me to explain.
Residencies take many forms, but, in general, they’re retreats awarded to creators, giving them not only a space to create but also the solitude to do so. Ask most creators, and they’ll tell you what they really need is uninterrupted time to advance their current project.
Write On, Door County is a non-profit located in gorgeous Door County, Wisconsin. WODC is dedicated to developing writers, helping them to set their stories onto the page. The organization also holds classes, readings, seminars, and conferences for everyone from school kids to residents at nursing homes.
I’m simply thrilled to say that, thanks to WODC, I’ll get not one but two week-long retreats to focus on things that are very important to me:
The first retreat is for Literary Arts Administrators, that is, an administrator of a literary arts organization, in my case, the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators-Wisconsin. I will get a precious, quiet week to envision new programming for the region, plan events, edit materials, whatever SCBWI-WI needs. I take this responsibility seriously and intend to do my best by the region.
The second retreat is a regular writer’s residency, which will allow me a blissful week away from life’s normal distractions to work on my current project. I can’t even imagine that, to be honest. I hope I don’t freeze under the weight of expectation.
Who’s expectation? Mine. Honestly, as a Latina, these sorts of intellectual pursuits always seemed out of reach, as if they were hazy possibilities meant for other types of people. My grandparents worked farms in the central hills of Puerto Rico. My father moved to Milwaukee to be a laborer in a manufacturing plant, and he brought my mother up from the island when she was just a teen. She learned English here and worked her way up to earning a degree in engineering. Imagine that! Her three children are professionals in their own right. And I’m allowed two weeks to think and create. It’s … almost too much to believe.
I hear that residencies are game-changers in the lives of creatives. Without even having finished them, mine already are.
How cool is this?! You may remember that I was interviewed last year by The Writescast Network podcast, which, by the way, is an excellent podcast for writers, illustrators, and creators of all types. Well, wow and zowie! I won the podcast’s MOST LISTENS AWARD for 2019! What a nice honor. I talked about writing a series following the completion of my God Awful trilogy. You can listen to the interview HERE.
Host Ryan Campbell also CREATED A NIFTY COFFEE MUG celebrating the award, which, if you’re interested in seeing the covers of my books while enjoying your morning coffee, you can purchase HERE.
And finally if you haven’t yet read my award-winning (I’m still so happy to say that!) series, why not get it now and binge read this funny story for a break from your studies or from real adulting? You can get the series HERE.
Thanks to author Ryan Campbell and to all of you out there who made the award happen. He’s had some really excellent guests, all authors, editors, agents, etc., within or around the publishing industry. If you’re into creating or publishing at all, you should dive into his podcasts. 🙂
I bought Scrivener last year and am really enjoying it. It seems like a really robust program, but that means there’s a lot to learn. So here I am trying to learn. Well, no, not really. Here I am posing with some SCBWI gals who helped put together a meetup about Scrivener, but I was too busy learning to take more pictures. And now I got Scriv skills. 😉
Thanks to Kerry, Deb, and Becki for setting this up.
When Newbery Award winner Linda Sue Park visits your area, you go. And that’s just what a bunch of us SCBWI-ers did recently when Boswell Book Company hosted her appearance promoting the release of her new middle grade novel, Prairie Lotus. Park says the work is reminiscent of the Little House books and is set in America’s heartland in the 1880s, but it’s meant to be much more inclusive and representative of the true diversity of the region then and now. Prairie Lotus features a half-Asian girl who’s also a wry, determined heroine.
SCBWI volunteers got some private chat time with Park before her event at the North Shore Library kicked off. You can see the event was well attended and just plain fun! Enjoy the pics.
I finally made it to SCBWI‘s New York international conference, and it was all I knew it would be. There is so much talent here, so much knowledge. I’m feeling like a dust mote in a wind storm. If you’re a creator of kidlit, especially an illustrator with a ready portfolio, get yourself out here. For now, enjoy some pix.
Wow! Wowee wow!
I might be hyperventilating as I write this, but I’m so thrilled to share the news with you. I’ve won a major award! I’ve won the SCBWI Spark Award.
This is an incredible honor because of who it’s from and because of what it represents. It’s given by the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, which is the worldwide professional organization for creators of literature for children and young adults. Their Spark Award recognizes excellence in independently published work.
And God Awful Rebel won! I’m so incredibly happy about this. God Awful Rebel is the book I’ve shared with all of you through progress reports and excerpts. So you were along with me on the journey — and many of you encouraged me along the way!
God Awful Rebel is my latest book, the third and final title in my God Awful series. As it was the final piece, it had a lot of work to do. And I’m especially pleased with how it wrapped up the series. I believe it encompassed my best fiction writing to date. The God Awful series was a wild ride, and this award puts a gorgeous bow on the top.
If you haven’t yet picked up God Awful Rebel, you now have added incentive. You can get it HERE. And please share this post with someone who you think might enjoy the tale of a not-so-likeable Cupid who loses his place in Olympus and works his way back — and into our hearts.