Tuesday, August 11, 2009

SCBWI 2009: An Outsider's Perspective

This year's conference was an interesting one for me. Because of certain extenuating circumstances (interviews to take, houses to look for, upcoming school to pay for) I was not actually able to attend the conference this year. I had to be in the area that weekend, though, so I decided to stay at the hotel and enjoy the social side.

I am happy to say that I had a wonderful time--and kept surprisingly busy!

From what I saw, there was this really cool vibe of openness throughout the weekend. I was only around during the end-of-the-day lobby festivities, but I saw lots of editors and agents interacting with writers, making themselves available. Everyone was so approachable, and genuinely seemed interested in talking to the attendees.

And as Paul mentioned in his recap, who said anything about the book business declining? Everyone really did seem hungry, on both sides. It seemed like every other person I met had either won an award or had an agent/editor pleading them to send a manuscript immediately. You could almost hear the doors opening everywhere you turned.

I must say that I, too, had my own bit of excitement. On Friday I had my interview for business school; not only did it go well, but one of the staff members at the school has a brother who is a Walt Disney Imagineer! For those of you who don't know, it is my ultimate dream to design rides for the Disney parks. The imagineer's sister gave me his card, and let him know I'd be in touch. Talk about an amazing opportunity!

Of course, back to the conference, I can't forget to mention the ever-expanding bank of memories and friends that seems to grow exponentially as each year passes. And this year, between wacked-out Dr. Seuss character look-a-likes, an angry astronaut (Did they remember the theme???), an improvised limbo breakout, some renegade socializing (it was kool-aid, I swear), a KEYNOTE with a twist, several discussions of urinal edicate, Face Up Uno, and the best new YA picture book that needs to be written ("You think you like me in economics class..."), this year was certainly no exception.

I would have loved to soak up all the knowledge that you gain in all those breakout sessions, because it did seem to be quite the year for speeches, too. But considering the circumstances, I was pretty happy just being able to spend the weekend with so many wonderful people--again. So thank you to everyone who was part of the magic that happened at SCBWI 2009. And I'll see you next year.


Casey McCormick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Casey McCormick said...

Let's try this again...

And suddenly "conference that I never attended" clicks. Glad you had fun!

Shelli said...

that rocks on the disney angle! godo for you. :)

Corey Schwartz said...

yeah, I was having trouble figuring that one out too! :)

I might do that in NYC next winter. Not attend the conference, but go in for all the socializing!