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Debbie Ridpath Ohi reads, writes and illustrates for young people. Every few weeks, she shares new art, writing and resources; subscribe below. Browse the archives here.

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scbwi conference

Some photos from earlier this trip (thanks for the scanning, Beckett!) during a visit to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk with Amanda and Beckett:

Having a great time at the SCBWI conference. Very hectic, tho, hence the lack of blatherings. Lots of great talks, including authors S.E. Hinton, Paula Danzinger, Bruce Balan, David Adler, David Wisniewki, Han Nolan, Bruce Coville, Robert D. San Souci, Julius Lester, others.

I got invited on a group trip to the Santa Monica Pier and was very excited because I had always wanted to visit it because of Christine Lavin's song...and the palm trees DID look like Tina Turner! On the way down, driver
April Halprin Wayland asked if any of us had heard of Stan Rogers, a Canadian musician. I got all excited, of course (I got all excited a lot during this conference, I have to confess :-)'s been really, really great). She put on Mary Ellen Carter and Bruce Balan (I've interviewed Bruce for Inklings before and was glad to finally be able to meet him) knew ALL the words. I also found out that Bruce had a concertina at the hotel...if April had brought her fiddle, we would have had a fun session, I think. :-) (I had brought my flute to do some jamming while in San Jose, but didn't expect to need it at the conference).

I think I was the only one in tonight's group of fourteen that hadn't had books published yet, so felt a wee bit outclassed :-) but so far I've found everyone at the conference (published or not) incredibly friendly and welcoming. My favourite comment at the conference so far: "Wow! So you ARE a real person." :-)
Several have been intrigued by the Urban Tapestry site (they followed links from Inkspot to my personal home page to the UT site), and now I wish I had brought some CDs with me!

Wish me luck...tomorrow morning I get a manuscript critique session with Brenda Bowen, a VP and publisher at Simon & Shuster's Children's division. I'm told I'm very lucky to get assigned to Brenda, so that's a good sign. I'm hoping her critique will help me revise the piece to make it more saleable (it's been circulating via an agent for a couple of years without success).

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