Friday, March 23, 2018

Spotlight on...Stephanie Moody!

Now that we've caught our breath from all the wik'18 happenings, it's time to put faces to the names on our website. So let's start with a spotlight on one of our long-standing Local Liaisons, Stephanie Moody!

Fun facts about Stephanie:

*She's been a member of SCBWI since 1989.

*Her work has been published in Highlights for Children, Spider, Jack and Jill, and Clubhouse, to name just a few.

*She's a certified Master Naturalist (and many of her stories focus on animals, habitats, and protecting the environment).

*She's a writer and illustrator and a pretty awesome photographer, too. You've probably seen her behind the camera at many conferences!

*And as the Local Liaison in the Atlanta/North Fulton area, Stephanie brings us terrific workshops in conjunction with the Atlanta/Fulton County Public Library. And what do you know? She just happens to have one coming up next month:

What:              Writer's Workshop With a Christian Focus

When:             Saturday, April 21, 10:30 AM

Where:            NE Spruill Oaks Library
                        9560 Spruill Rd.
                        Johns Creek, GA  30022

Join Author and photographer Deborah Malone who will lead "Writing Christian Fiction 101"and author April Love Fordham as she discusses "My Journey as a Christian Author." As always, workshops are FREE and open to the public! For more information or to register, contact Stephanie at

We are so lucky to have Stephanie Moody as one of our amazing Local Liaisons! In fact, Southern Breeze is bursting at the seams with amazing volunteers so next time, the spotlight might just be on you!


Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Shining Brightly with Southern Breeze's Illustrators!

Take a room full of illustrators and add a handful of amazing industry professionals and you've got a winning combination at Illustrators' Day! And a few illustrators won even more!

I'll let Temika Grooms, Illustrator Coordinator for Southern Breeze, tell you more:

Claire Easton of Painted Words, Inc. joined us to round out our faculty and serve as a judge for the Liz Conrad Award. In honor of Liz Conrad, Claire selected three artists who demonstrate exceptional potential within their craft and provided written and verbal feedback during the conference. This year we had 13 applicants. Each applicant submitted a letter with a bio and information about their work along with images for review. The following were awardees for 2018:

Honorable Mention – Shannon Day
Runner Up – Melissa Schultz-Jones
Winner – Laura Moss
They were each provided with a certificate to commemorate the award. The winner will be able to attend next year’s conference for free!

AND there was another winner at ID 2018! The Illustrator’s Portfolio Show was held on Saturday and twenty-one portfolios were on display all day during the conference for viewing.  Faculty judged the portfolios to choose a winner. The winner, Lori Nichols, was awarded with a Michael’s Gift Card at the end of the day.

The theme for this year's program was Ignite Your Illustration Career and we're pretty sure all of our Southern Breeze illustrators will continue to shine brightly!

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

TEN Tips for Conference AtTENdees

The doors open on wik'18 this Friday, March 9th! And it's a whirlwind of activities and sessions and speakers and friends and fun, so you'll want to be ready. Thanks to Southern Breeze Regional Advisor, Claudia Pearson, you can be! Take a look at these ten tips she's collected just for you:

 1. Volunteer! It's the best way to get to know new people!

2. Comment on the Southern Breeze conference Facebook, Twitter and blog posts. People will remember your name.

3. Attend the conference with your critique group or writing buddies if you can. If you each attend different sessions, you can share notes after the conference.
4. Get organized: Prepare a clear view binder prior to attending. Keep the conference schedule in the front cover and a checklist of items to bring in the back. Use clear sleeves inside the binder for "homework," handouts, writing samples, business cards, etc, for easy access. 

5. Keep it compact. Big bags can be barriers and small (no larger than 14") illustration portfolios are better suited than large ones for presentation space and critiques.

6. Write out "must know" questions handy for the breakout session speakers and to pop in the box for the Q & A panel. Refrain from questions that can be easily "Googled," (i.e. what is point of view, what's a dummy?) and instead address specific craft/marketing issues that maximize the speakers' expertise.   

7. If you plan to take notes on a laptop, insure the battery is fully charged. Plugs near work space may be scarce.
8. Don't "buttonhole" faculty, and don't offer them your manuscript at the conference (you will have a chance to submit after the conference), but have your 30 second pitch ready just in case they ask what you are working on.
9. Get together with your Local Liaison and members from your area. They can be great friends and resources after the conference.
10. Prepare to be engaged, challenged and inspired! Drinking water from a fire hose is not so easy, so get some rest, arrive early, and be ready to learn and share. Everyone has something valuable to offer.

There you have it, Breezers, ten terrific tips! Can't wait to see all y'all at wik'18!

(Late registration is ongoing, and many sessions are full, but you can still join us for the conference experience. See the Southern Breeze website for details!)

Monday, March 5, 2018

EVERYONE A WINNER AT WIK'18: Friday Dessert Party and Booksigning!

Books and Cookies. Cookies and Books.

Children’s books.

Children’s authors and illustrators.

Desserts. (Lots of cookies.)

What an unbeatable combination!

Bring your kids. Invite friends and neighbors to bring their kids.

March 9, 3:30-5:30 at the Homewood Public Library, 1721 Oxmoor Rd., Homewood, AL 35209

Join our SCBWI Southern Breeze region’s kick-off celebration of Writing and Illustrating for Kids (WIK) at a new time of year.

If you love books for kids, member of SCBWI or not, registered WIK attendee or not, you are invited to meet over 30 authors and illustrators and see their latest books. Little Professor Book Store is handling sales and authors and illustrators will be happy to autograph them in person.

If you are registered for the conference, pick up your registration materials early. Skip the lines on Saturday. If you aren’t able to attend the conference this year, come see all your writing buddies and catch up on writing news. Free! Students from the neighborhood (including schools) will be walking over from school or stopping in car pools on the way home. This means YOU can meet your future fans.

Cookies and books. Books and cookies. Friends and future fans. How can you stay away? Oh—lots of free parking.

Joan Broerman, RAE, Southern Breeze, has contributed to more than a dozen books on the business and craft of writing. The first Southern Breeze Regional Advisor, she now serves as an Emerita. A picture book and a middle grade novel are on editors’ desks. With fingers crossed, she’s finishing another novel.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Breezers in the Neighborhood: MARCH!

Isn't it March that comes in like a lion? I'm sure the expression has more to do with weather than writer/illustrator happenings, but Southern Breeze is roaring in this month!

Saturday, March 3:

Elevator Pitches and Query Letter Feedback

10:00 to 2:00 PM

Read Law Firm in Olde Town Conyers
915 Commercial Street
Conyers, Georgia 30012

Participants will read their work out loud and others will provide feedback. This is a free event, open to the public, so bring your friends!Light refreshments will be served, and you can bring your own lunch or donte to a collection and pizza will be ordered. If you plan on coming, or have questions, email TK Read at And once you have your polished pitch and query, you'll want to bring 'em to the big event!

March 9, 10, 11:

WIK'18 (Writing and Illustrating for Kids) SCBWI Southern Breeze Conference

Friday: Public Book Signing and Dessert Party
             3:30 to 5:30

             Homewood Public library
             1721 Oxmoor Road
             Birmingham, AL  35209

Saturday, Sunday: wik'18

              8:30 to 5:00 PM

              Spain Park High School
              4700 Jaguar Drive
              Hoover, AL  35242

See the Southern Breeze website for more information!

Wednesday, March 21: Meet The Author!


               Eastlake Public Library
               Birmingham, AL

Come out and say hello to Avery Hurt, non-fiction children's writer and one of Southern Breeze's terrific mentors.