SCBWI & “What Happened To Your Book Today”

I am lucky enough to say that I just returned from the Society of Children’s Book Writer’s and Illustrator’s Conference in New York City. It was an amazing reminder of why I write – I write for kids.

If you’re a children’s writer who’s feeling uninspired lately or a children’s writer who’s feeling beat down by one-star Amazon reviews or if you’re just wondering why anyone would dedicate their career to writing for kids, this poem is for you. It’s written by Kate Messner, a children’s book author – and TED talker – who absolutely stole the show on the last day of the conference with a talk on the power of failure. Here’s a poem she wrote a few years ago and shared with us called “What Happened To Your Book Today.”

Somewhere, a child laughed
on that page where you made a joke.
Somewhere, she wiped away a tear,
Just when you thought she might. 

Somewhere, your book was passed
from one hand to another in a hallway
busy with clanging lockers,
with whispered words,
“You have got to read this.”
And a scribbled note:
O.M.G. SO good.
Give it back when ur done. 

Read the rest of Kate Messner’s “What Happened To Your Book Today.”

At the end of Kate’s hour-long talk, there had been tears in the audience many times over. She got a standing ovation from YA writers, middle grade writers, picture book writers, non-fiction writers, poets, and illustrators alike. I think I found my people.