Educating and Inspiring Writers on the Road to Publication Children's Book Writers of Los Angeles
 
 

Events



Upcoming events

    • 23 Aug 2014
    • 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
    • El Segundo Library 111 W. Mariposa Ave, El Segundo CA 90245
    Do You Give...Good Voice? How to Find (and Nurture) Your Writing Personality.

     Voice is one of the hardest things to master in the writing process.  And the easiest.  Whether you write fiction or non-fiction, children’s or young adult, it’s important to have a unique voice in writing, or in style. 

    This is what sets you apart. 

    This is what gets you discovered. 

    In today’s congested literary world stuffed to capacity with a writhing, teeming mass of writers, how do you make yourself memorable?  How do you make sure to be noticed, to be read, and to have readers become fans?

    By having your own voice.  Your own recognizable stamp confirming that story is YOURS as surely as that first twang of a Led Zepplin tune confirms the night will be great.

    As writers, your goal is to take your reader away from their world and put them into yours. 

    This is what you do with voice.

    Join Author Samantha Combs at the El Segundo Public Library June 28th and find yours!


    Speaker's Bio:

    I am a Southern California author with six published books; the Global Ebook Award-winning debut title: SPELLBOUND, EVERSPELL, and GHOSTLY, all YA paranormals. My Middle Grade horror, THE DETENTION DEMON is out, along with two adult horror collections, TEETH AND TALONS and WAY PAST MIDNIGHT.  WATERDANCER, a new YA fantasy, comes out in Sept. I enjoy writing YA paranormal romance and supernatural fantasy, but I also dabble in the horror and sci-fi genres as well, and writing for the Middle Grade audience.

    When I'm not writing, I enjoy spending time with my husband and two children, and my guilty pleasures include reality television, the Food Network channel and shoes. I truly believe I can accomplish anything if I have the right pair of shoes.

    I love writing and I am in awe of the technological advances of our lives. Ereaders and similar gadgets are bringing the written word to a generation that might never have discovered books otherwise and every time I see a kid pick one up to read something it fills me with joy to be a small part of that process. If a child can connect with literature because he or she did so electronically, a connection still was made. I am excited to see what our world has in store for literature and excited to be along for that ride.

    http://samanthacombswrites.blogspot.com/



    Date: August 23, 2014, Saturday

    Time: 1 - 4 PM

    Venue: TBD

    Fee: $30

    *$10 Discount for CBW-LA Members when you pay online

    *$5 Discount for CBW-LA Members when you pay at the door

    *Non-members pay the full amount of $30

    *Fee includes workshop materials, handouts, worksheet and a copy of the authors’ book WINGSPAN.

     


    About Wingspan:

    Chessa Dawning never thought she’d be on the run. Yet, she was, having left the only home she’s ever known, staying two steps ahead of the men chasing her and falling for a resourceful ex-criminal with colorful friends. 

    Most of the time, Charlotte Lake can’t believe her life. The reluctant leader of a rebel faction called the Ginger Nation, Charlie’s days are filled with planning surveillance, rescuing detainees, and exposing government conspiracy. Surrounded by loyal friends and soldiers, she knows she can never reveal the true nature of her quest: finding her real father.
     

    When a sudden twist brings the two girls together, revelations about the past will make them rethink where they came from and define the future in ways they never could have imagined.
     
    Not every scientific breakthrough is a gift.
     

     

    • 13 Sep 2014
    • 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
    • near El Segundo and Inglewood Ave. Hawthorne, CA 90250
    • 9
    Calling all Picture Book/Chapter Book/Early Reader Writers Out There!

    Join this critique session to:
    Get constructive feedback for your manuscripts, meet potential critique partners and make new friends!

    *Venue--Lucy's house/backyard--exact address will be emailed to attendees (near El Segundo and Inglewood Ave in Hawthorne, CA 90250)


    What to Bring:

                          
    1. Copies of the entire picture book and early reader book, or if you're working on a chapter book, bring the first two chapters.

     The general rule is that you must bring copies for every member who has signed up for the session. * Please wait for the final email from the organizer before printing copies, so you know exactly how many to print.*

    2. A voice/tape recorder if you wish to record the critiques.

    3. A notebook/pad and pen to use for your critique notes.


    THE VALUE OF A CRITIQUE SESSION

    As writers, we are very close to our work and often times we miss certain details on story development or story elements like characters, setting, etc.

    Critique sessions allow other people with “fresh eyes” to have a look at your writing sample, and read them as your future readers would, providing you with valuable feedback to improve your writing skills and get your manuscript ready for submission.

    In all our Critique Sessions, we give you feedback in the most TACTful way possible.

    TACT = Finesse, thoughtfulness or having a keen sense of what to say or do to avoid giving offense; skill in dealing with difficult or delicate situations.

    TACT is also the technique we use for our critiques:

    T = Terrific

    We share what we loved in your piece, what worked in your story and what we liked about your plot, setting, character, pacing, etc.

    A = Author Questions

    In the last few minutes of your critique time, we encourage you, as the author, to ask questions either about your story or to  clarify the comments you received.

    C = Constructive Comments 

    We deliver, in the politest way possible, comments that are specific and helpful to help you improve your story. 

    T = Talent 

    Talent can get you far, but hard work can get your farther. We always end by encouraging you, the author, to keep on writing. We remind you that we are here to help you achieve your writing goals.

    • 27 Sep 2014
    • 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
    • El Segundo Library 111 W. Mariposa Ave, El Segundo CA 90245

    Write Stories That Change the World & Pitch them to TV & Movie Producers

    With Jill Gurr and Pamela Jaye Smith

    Mythic Challenges is a tool set that helps writers use Mythic Themes, Archetypes and Symbols to tell unique stories for a global audience that moves them to awareness and action. Mythology expert Pamela Jaye Smith partnered with Jill Gurr (and Brian Dyer) to develop this special method of generating powerful stories that can impact our planet. The pilot program worked with students in LA and Afghanistan, in conjunction with the US State Department, helping the young media-makers craft short award-winning films that address some of the 15 Global Challenges.

    No matter your plot or topic, you can seamlessly weave in the issues we all face, no matter our age, gender, ethnicity or location. Main plot, sub-plot, background, main characters, minor characters and symbolism give your children’s book a “message” to help align it with the hundreds of organizations and millions of interested people worldwide.

    Jill and Pamela will share how you too can use these timeless tools to make your already entertaining stories work in even bigger ways.

    Besides the Mythic Challenges tools, they will also present tips about how to break into the entertainment industry, including via Pamela's Pitch Proxy service. They’ll present formats for Pitch Materials: Logline, Pitch, Synopsis – and will share what they’ve learned doing hundreds of pitches of books and scripts at many, many PitchFests.

    Pamela and Jill will provide some fun writing and improvisation exercises to teach you how to promote your books to the entertainment industry. They'll also listen to some of your pitches and give you feedback about how to enhance them.

    Both of our speakers have decades of experience in the film industry and much success in promoting their books and screenplays to film producers, agents and network executives both at PitchFests and in one-on-one meetings.


    ABOUT THE SPEAKERS

    JILL GURR self-published her children's chapter book Dolphin Healing about a 10-year old girl fighting cancer who is inspired to live through her friendship with a dolphin. She'll talk about the research that went into the project, including the best system for publishing her three books. Jill is the founder of Create Now, a nonprofit that helps troubled children through arts mentoring, and the author of Mentor Youth Now: A Guidebook for Transforming Young Lives, a practical and inspiring guidebook to passing on your experience and expertise to young creatives, while also learning from kids about what makes them tick. Jill is also a screenwriter. Two of her scripts were produced with name actors and several screenplays were optioned.Jill was also a Script Supervisor on award-winning movies for many years, working with major celebrities in exotic locations all over the world.

    Jill Gurr's Websites:




    PAMELA JAYE SMITH is a writer, international consultant-speaker, and award-winning producer/director with over thirty years experience in the media industry. Pamela is the author of 5 books for writers including the new self-published SHOW ME THE LOVE! She is the co-author of two children’s books and also writes short stories and articles. Her company MYTHWORKS helps media-makers improve their stories, find and live their personal myths, and better present their projects to producers and the public.

    www.mythworks.net
    www.alphababeacademy.com



    Date: September 27, 2014, Saturday

    Time: 1 - 4 PM

    Venue: El Segundo Library, 111 W. Mariposa Ave., El Segundo, CA


    *$10 Discount for CBW-LA Members when you pay online

    *$5 Discount for CBW-LA Members when you pay at the door*Non-members pay the full amount 

    *Fee includes workshop materials, handouts, worksheet and copies of the speakers' books Jill Gurr's DOLPHIN'S HEALING & Pamela Jaye Smith's SHOW ME THE LOVE


    ABOUT THE BOOKS


    DOLPHIN HEALING includes 18 detailed illustrations by artist Valerie Woelk. Being bullied makes Julie feel miserable, but she has a bigger challenge to overcome when she discovers that she has cancer and must stay in the hospital for treatment. Julie returns to school after losing all her hair. Classmate Danny embarrasses her in front of the entire class. She runs away to her secret spot where she meets Dreamer. He's a special dolphin and through their friendship, she heals. Julie learns from a marine biologist that the owner of the local fishery where her mother works is killing dolphins to capture tuna fish. Julie becomes an activist to save dolphins from the nets. However, after a very traumatic experience where she loses her best friend, the cancer returns. Julie is dying and nothing can save her, but just when there's no hope for her recovery, she learns a visualization technique. She discovers that her thoughts and feelings can affect her disease. As she regains good health and self-confidence, her popularity soars and she receives support. Julie is finally able to help save the dolphins. She becomes cherished by her new friends, and people from all over the world.



    A rich resource, new ideas, and a comprehensive, practical guide to using the dynamic and dramatic power of LOVE in all your stories.

    For undefined Writers, Directors, Actors, Directors of Photography, Production Designers, Composers, and Sound Designers as well as Development Execs, Producers, Publishers, and Marketers.

    Identifying, understanding, portraying, and communicating the core of emotion in a story is what entertains, enlightens, and educates your audience.

    Understanding the deeper drives that affect how we act, react, and understand will give you better tools with which to create and motivate your characters and stories along their transformational arcs.

    Readers and viewers of all types of media may also find this information will enhance their understanding and enjoyment.


    Jill was also a Script Supervisor on award-winning movies for many years, working with major celebrities in exotic locations all over the world. 
    Jill Gurr's Websites:


    Then the space to separate me from Pamela, followed by this link:

    • 04 Oct 2014
    • 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
    • Torrance Airport Meeting Room 3301 Airport Drive, Torrance, CA 90505

    Baiting the Hook: 

    Nabbing the Reader 

    With Your First Page

    Former St. Martin’s Press editor, Mollie Traver, and bookseller/author Catherine Linka team up for a workshop on writing first pages that will hook agents, editors and young readers. Mollie and Catherine will give you insider insights along with solid advice on how to tackle those critical pages, before providing specific feedback about your first pages. A brief writing exercise will be included. Workshop participants need to bring 2 copies of the first page of their manuscript AND a plot synopsis of 450 words or less. 

    *Fee includes workshop materials, handouts, worksheet and copies of the speakers' book A GIRL CALLED FEARLESS


    ABOUT THE SPEAKERS

    CATHERINE LINKAis the author of the YA novel, A GIRL CALLED FEARLESS. An MFA grad of the Vermont College of Fine Arts, she's also the Children's and YA Buyer for an independent bookstore in Southern California, and has spent almost 100 hours listening to tweens and teens talk about what they love and hate in books.


    MOLLIE TRAVERis a freelance editor and writer and a former editor at St. Martin’s Press, where she specialized in young adult fiction of all kinds, and worked with a host of wonderful authors, including Catherine Linka, Amy Kathleen Ryan, Jenna Black and Jana Oliver. Mollie graduated from Stanford University with a degree in creative writing, a serious relationship with black coffee, and a passion for helping shape other writers’ work.



    Date: October 4, 2014, Saturday

    Time: 1 - 4 PM

    Venue: Torrance Airport Meeting Room,

       3301 Airport Drive, Torrance, CA 90505

    *$10 Discount for CBW-LA Members when you pay online

    *$5 Discount for CBW-LA Members when you pay at the door*Non-members pay the full amount 

    *Fee includes workshop materials, handouts, worksheet and copies of the speakers' book A GIRL CALLED FEARLESS



    ABOUT THE BOOK



    Avie Reveare has the normal life of a privileged teen growing up in L.A., at least as normal as any girl’s life is these days. After a synthetic hormone in beef killed fifty million American women ten years ago, only young girls, old women, men, and boys are left to pick up the pieces. The death threat is past, but fathers still fear for their daughters’ safety, and the Paternalist Movement, begun to "protect" young women, is taking over the choices they make.

    Like all her friends, Avie still mourns the loss of her mother, but she’s also dreaming about college and love and what she’ll make of her life. When her dad "contracts" her to marry a rich, older man to raise money to save his struggling company, her life suddenly narrows to two choices: Be trapped in a marriage with a controlling politician, or run. Her lifelong friend, student revolutionary Yates, urges her to run to freedom across the border to Canada. As their friendship turns to passion, the decision to leave becomes harder and harder. Running away is incredibly dangerous, and it’s possible Avie will never see Yates again. But staying could mean death.

    From Catherine Linka comes this romantic, thought-provoking, and frighteningly real story, A Girl Called Fearless, about fighting for the most important things in life are freedom and love. 

     


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