Monday, October 29, 2018

2018 Writing Contest WINNERS!

Just in case you missed the news, here as promised is the latest from our Writing Contest Coordinator, Debbie D'Aurelio:

This year’s contest had amazing entries! All of the judges remarked that they had to make some really tough decisions. We want to thank our wonderful professional judges for taking the time to provide valuable feedback to the writers: Lara Perkins from Andrea Brown Literary Agency, Hannah Fergesen from KT Literary Agency and Elizabeth Bewley from Sterling Lord Literistic, Inc.

And the winners for the 2018 Southern Breeze writing contest are . . . 


First Place: Appollo, The First Twin Towers Rescue Dog by Emily Matheis
Second Place: The Forest Says AHHH by Allyson Levitt
Third Place: Jeremy Storm by Kelly Jordan


First Place: Nefarious by Amy Board
Second Place: Sentinel by Olga Amigo
Third Place: Murder at the Starswitch Hotel by Sharon Pegram


First Place: The Beast of Weissburg by Emma Fox
Second Place: Something Beautiful by Jasmine Rasmussen
Third Place: The Undoing of Brooklyn Rose by Johnna Stein

Friday, October 26, 2018

An Art Call for our Members!

If you’re one of our illustrator members in Southern Breeze, then you know our Illustrator Coordinator, TeMika Grooms, whether you’ve met her at a conference or you receive Art Calls in your inbox.

But sometimes a new member is not yet ready to put that name “illustrator” next to his or her name. How do you know what’s going on?

You’ll find out about the Liz Conrad Award (Submissions always due January 1st!) and Illustrator’s Day (March 15, 2019). You’ll get details about the Mentorship with Maria Middleton of Candlewick Press (Registration opens December 1, 2018!) and most importantly, you'll discover the contact email for our Illustrator Coordinator if you need more information.

Oh! And this latest Art Call deadline, coming up in just a few days:

It’s all there, waiting for you, if you’re a member of SCBWI Southern Breeze. So check your membership! (And then start drawing!)

Monday, October 22, 2018

Get More From Your SCBWI Membership: Webinars!

Want great workshops between conferences? You’re in luck. Webinars are becoming a thing in SCBWI. Here’s how it works:

1.      Follow this link to a schedule of all webinars being offered by any region of SCBWI: You don’t have to live in the host region to attend! (And big thanks to the Nevada region for hosting and updating the schedule!)
2.       Choose a webinar and follow its link.
3.      Register according to the specific instructions for that webinar. Procedures and prices will be different from region to region, so pay attention to the details.
4.      Enjoy the webinar. If you can’t attend live, a recording will usually be available to registered attendees for a limited period of time. You must register before the live event to have access to the recording.
5.      Check the schedule often. Programs are being added all the time.  A few examples coming up in October and November: “Ins and Outs of Self-Publishing for Children” $15 members, $35 non-members
“Verse Novels 101 with K.A. Holt” $10 members, $35 non-members, limited number of written-only critiques available for additional $35
“Art Licensing for Illustrators: How to License your Art and Product Concepts” $10 members, $25 non-members

Friday, October 19, 2018

Lit Story Fest Fun!

TeMika Grooms, far right, and Lit Story Fest fun!
SCBWI Southern Breeze jumped in with both feet at a recent event! We were pleased to be one of the sponsors and we hope Lit Story Fest will become a regular in our community. Here's TeMika Grooms to tell you more:

Lit Story Fest, a literature and storytelling festival, was held the week of September 24th – 29th, 2018 at DeKalb County Libraries. This community focused event was envisioned and created by TeMika Grooms with a mission to Light the Way to Literacy by providing access to books through enlivened spaces and entertainment.

The festival featured local authors' talks, live storytelling for all ages, and visual art exhibits showcasing quilts by the Brown Sugar Stitchers, a Flat Rock Archives historical talk, and children’s book illustrations by Laura Freeman, Kelsi Jackson and TeMika Grooms. Children’s Literary Day at Stonecrest Library also featured interactive miming by the Gateway Mask Theater, live storytelling, an authors' panel on diversity in children’s literature and a teen poetry slam.

R. Gregory Christie, Cheryl Clark, and Kelsi Jackson
A highlight of the event was the Illustrators Showdown featuring R. Gregory Christie and Kelsi Jackson as they battled over a picture book manuscript. SCBWI Critique Group Coordinator, T.K. Read, served as the judge to choose the manuscript with the highest conceptual and illustrative potential. The winning manuscript, Kaysha and Grandma Omi's Golden Crown of Jewels by Cheryl Clark, was announced and read live as the artists created on-the-spot sketches in less than an hour. TeMika Grooms narrated the work and talked about critique groups, art direction, and the inner workings of visual storytelling.

Storytelling, through literature, visual art and spoken words, was brought front and center with the Lit Story Fest programming. Community support for this festival goes toward reading initiatives through 1000 Books Before Kindergarten.

TeMika Grooms is Illustrator Coordinator for SCBWI Southern Breeze. You can find out more about upcoming illustrator events and opportunities in our region at the Southern Breeze website.

Monday, October 15, 2018

They're Coming!

Remember back in May and June when you worked so hard, polishing up your manuscripts at Show-Mo events throughout the region?

And then you followed all the guidelines and sent those manuscripts in for the Southern Breeze Writing Contest?

We had some great judges:

Lara Perkins, an Associate Agent at the Andrea Brown Literary Agency judged the Illustrated Texts.

Hannah Fergesen from KT Literary judged the Middle Grade novels.

And Elizabeth Bewley, from Sterling Lord Literistic, Inc. judged Young Adult Novels.

Writing Contest Coordinator, Debbie D'Aurelio, has been hard at work with the judges and she wants you to know that results are on their way. So stay tuned, Breezers, winners are coming!

And as we say around Southern Breeze, "We're fixin' to celebrate!"

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Breezers In Your Neighborhood: OCTOBER!

Take the first weekend of October off and get ready, y'all, because the rest of the month is a whirlwind of Breezer events! 

Saturday, October 13

Breezer Nancy Raines Day  and Pirate Jack will be at the Pat Conroy Children's Book Fair In Beaufort, South Carolina. Nancy says it's not exactly in the Southern Breeze region but we have lots of members who'd probably love a visit to the low country.  Find more information at the Pat Conroy Children's Book Fair website.

Local Liaison Melissa Miles is hosting an event in Savannah, Georgia. SCBWI member and author, Kimberly Thornton, will be speaking on several topics, including setting up a vision board, developing a blog, and discovering ways to market books.

When: 11:00 AM to 1 PM

Where: Southwest Chatham Library (Children's Activity Room, first floor)

              14097 Abercorn Street
              Savannah, GA 31419

The event is free and open to the public so bring a friend! Contact Melissa at for more information.

Also on Saturday, Breezer Vanessa Fortenberry will be participating in a collaborative author/book signing featuring works in a variety of genres at the Conyers-Rockdale Library Local Author Expo.

When: 1 PM to 3 PM

Where: Nancy Guinn Memorial Library

              864 Green Street
              Conyers, GA 30012

Heather L. Montgomery will be touring Birmingham with her newest books, SOMETHING ROTTEN: A FRESH LOOK AT ROADKILL and BUGS DON'T HUG: SIX-LEGGED PARENTS AND THEIR KIDS, on the last weekend of October.

Friday, October 26

When: 2 PM to 4 PM

Where: Books-A-Million
              757 Brookwood Village
              Birmingham, AL 35209


Saturday, October 27     

When: 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM

Where: Discovery United Methodist Church

              5487 Stadium Trace Pkwy
             Hoover, AL 35244

Heather will be joining other SCBWI creators at Dog Days in Hoover, and then she'll be zipping over to the Oak Mountain State Park where she'll do a reading at Owl-o-Ween at 12:45 at the Alabama Wildlife Center in the park.

Also on Saturday, Local Liaison Cathy Hall is hosting Southern Breezer, Lisa Lowe Stauffer (and her two mischievous monkeys)! Lisa's recently released board book, TWO BY TWO is a rhyming picture book and so she will be bringing a wordplay program that's sure to be fun for writers of any length manuscript. Bring the first and last pages of your picture book (or novel), up to 400 words, for an afternoon of wordplay workshopping.

When:  1 PM to 3:30 PM

Where: Five Forks Branch Library

              2780 Five Forks Trickum Rd.
              Lawrenceville, GA 30044