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Hi Jannie, I have a few concerns regarding children's writing. I hope you're familiar with this area, and with the SCBWI.

I recently joined the SCBWI and became confused immediately. I viewed their conferences as chances to meet agents and publishers, but it seems I'm paying annual membership dues AND admission fees to sit in rooms enduring long speeches, while my manuscripts continue moldering in slush piles. This is not helping my literary pursuits reach fruition, Jannie.

How in the world do I connect with someone in this industry and escape the slush pile? I've been writing and submitting picture books for about four years with no success. Now agencies are even starting to refuse unsolicited submissions, stating on their websites: "We are now only accepting submissions from authors specifically invited to submit at SCBWI events." But I can't seem to get in contact with agents at these events, so what's my next step? I have a strong voice, but how do I get someone to listen to my voice when they won't even accept my queries?

Do I have to start showing up at events costumed as Captain Marvel to get people's attention? Should I dress up like one of my picture books' main characters and hope someone appreciates my courage and commitment to children's writing? Because I'm telling you in all seriousness--I'm ready to go that far and do something that crazy, if it means getting an agent's attention. I'm not even joking.

Guidance, please...before stress and uncertainty dents my brain permanently  o.O


brian b.

Brian, I'm not familiar with the SCBWI or its politics.

To get anywhere, you must obtain a literary agent that handles children's books in order to represent you and submit your manuscripts to the appropriate publishers that publish children's books.

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Jannie Balliett


I am a published writer, Chief Editor and own A1 Editorial Service. I teach writing, specializing in novel writing, and creative writing. I can answer most any question concerning writing a book, plot and characterization, tighten the prose, and the editing process, and help advise with publishing and the requirements of obtaining a literary agent.


I'm a published writer, freelancer, and Chief Editor and own A1 Editorial Service. I teach writing for my two Online writer workshops.

Sisters In Crime Internet Chapter, The Short Mystery Fiction Society, and Brazos Writers Group.

Writers Post Journal magazine, May 2006 issue, Augusr 2006 issue, Nov/December 2006 issue and soon in 2008, On A Whim, flash fiction anthology, offered in Barnes & Nobles and Amazon.

Some college, creative writing, fiction writing

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I have numerous clients using my service through my editorial service and numerous members in my Online writer workshops.

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