2019 Authors in Schools Literacy Program and the Amelia Island Book Festival

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Last Friday I had the extra special treat of visiting Southside Elementary School students in Fernandina Beach, Florida in conjunction with the Amelia Island Book Festival’s Authors in Schools Literacy Program.

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Photo courtesy of Southside Elementary School. 

I spoke to 600 plus kids from kindergarten to second grade about how I became a writer and the writing and revision process. The students asked amazing questions. My favorite question of the day (if one can have a favorite) came from a little boy who was curious about how my son convinced me to get three dogs.

Through the extreme generosity of the Amelia Island Book Festival, 27 authors presented to more than 12,000 students at 16 Nassau County public schools, five volunteer pre-kindergarten programs, and one private school. A grand total of 12,300 books were purchased for students.

The following day I attended the book expo where I had the chance to sign books for some of the Southside Elementary School students, answer many, many questions about Phil, Jim, and Harry, and I also learned that Amelia Island is very peacock friendly.

Here are a few photographic highlights:

I’d like to shout out a VERY HUGE THANK YOU to the Amelia Island Book Festival, Southside Elementary School, and to all of the hard working volunteers at the expo. I can hardly wait for next year’s festival.

I basic-red-heart THE AMELIA ISLAND BOOK FESTIVAL

 

Special Delivery for Santa

 

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Dear Santa,

What a wonderful surprise to see you at the Princeton Club of New York last Saturday! And let me tell you, you look marvelous! Was that a new suit? You know, not a lot of people can wear a bright red suit but on you it looks fantastic.

I hope you enjoyed story time with the amazing Roxie Munro, Laura Schroff, and Rocco Staino. I managed to take a few photos.

Now, I know you’re quite busy these days but I’ve been a reasonably good author this year. Okay, I’ll confess that I didn’t write every day but I can honestly say that I did mull over my stories and revisions daily. Then, I felt extreme guilt for when I wasn’t writing. Does that count for anything?

My list hasn’t changed much since last year. Here goes:

  • I’d like world peace, an end to poverty, famine, disease, universal access to education, and a special place for every child to call home.
  • Book deals for all of my author and illustrator friends.
  • And any chance you can make all of my books New York Times best sellers? Three books? How about just one? (Figured it couldn’t hurt to ask.)

Also, if you’re looking for last minute gifts, might I recommend some AWESOME books from the KidLit Authors Club?

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For more information about these wonderful books,

please visit the KidLit Authors Club.

Hope you have a wonderful holiday! Here’s to a great new year of reading and writing.

Much love,

Robin xo

BEST CONFERENCE EVER! New Jersey SCBWI Annual Conference 2017

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I say this every year, but cross my heart it’s the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. The New Jersey SCBWI Annual Conference is the BEST conference ever!

What makes it great? I’m so glad you asked. Here goes my laundry list:

Critiques, first pages, workshops covering every imaginable kidlit topic from picture books to YA, pitches, connecting with editors and agents, and more editors and more agents, getting solid feedback on your stories and illustrations (the good, the bad, and the sad ugly truth), inspiration galore, and lifelong friendships. Shall I go on?

Here are a few photographic highlights:

Behind the scenes the day before the conference.

Opening Keynote with Stephen Savage

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Blake Hamilton and Matthew Winner

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Sheela Chari and Leslie Zampetti

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Me with Detectives Wilcox and Griswold on the job

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Anita Arakelian and me (Mawrters in the house – Anassa kata ’89)

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Virginia Law Manning, me, Leslie Zampetti

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Leslie Santamaria

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The Liza Royce Crew!

(Left to right: Me, Laurie Wallmark, Darlene Beck-Jacobson, Liza Fleissig, Leslie Santamaria, Yvonne Ventresca)

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Me and David Lubar

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(Top row, left to right: Kathy Temean, Darlene Beck-Jacobson, me)

(Bottom row, left to right: Katey Howes, Jody Staton, Colleen Rowan Kosinski)

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Me and Hallee Adelman

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Cathleen Thole Daniels and Rosanne Kurstedt

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Anita Arakelian

 

 

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Heather Montgomery

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Stephen Savage, Mike Ciccotello, Annie Silvestro

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Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen

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Cathleen Thole Daniels, Kirstine Erekson Call, me

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Closing keynote with David Lubar

I’d like to shout out a HUGE THANK YOU to the amazing, incredible, you-take-my-breath-away NJ SCBWI team, including but certainly not limited to, Cathleen Thole Daniels, Rosanne Kurstedt, Karen Romagna, Annie Silvestro, Kelly Calabrese, Charlotte Bennardo, Guy Olivieri, Mike Ciccotello, Linda Bozzo, Tami Charles, and to all the incredible volunteers.

And do you want to know a little secret? If you close your eyes, take a deep breath, and cross your fingers and toes and hope the publishing gods are on your side, you’ll notice the hint of publishing contracts in the air. How could any conference ever get better than this?

The 2016 NJ SCBWI Annual Conference—The Best Conference Ever!

 

Every year the NJ SCBWI Annual Conference gets better and better. This year did not disappoint.

Here are some photographic highlights: 

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Opening Keynote Speaker, David Wiesner

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My amazing agent, Liza Fleissig, and my fellow Liza Royce Agency peeps! 

Yvonne Ventresca, Cathy Breisacher, Laurie Wallmark, Darlene Beck-Jacobson, Erica George, Leslie Santamaria, me, and Liza Fleissig 

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Diana Murray and me

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Johanna Bilbo Staton, Yvonne Ventresca, and Cathy Breisacher 

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Katey Howes

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Lauri Meyers

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Darlene Beck-Jacobson and Carole Lindstrom

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Annie Silvestro and Kim Pfennigwerth

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Me and Cristina Ergunay (Mawrters in the house! Anassa kata!) 

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Beth Ferry 

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Julie Matysik and Yvonne Ventresca

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Jacki Morris

Liza Fleissig, Keisha Senter, Kathy Temean, Carole Lindstrom, Leslie Santamaria, me, Karl Jones, Colleen Rowan Kosinski, Marlaina Cockcroft, and Linda Patterson Kujawski

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Laura Sassi and Diana Murray 

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Leeza Hernandez

Me and Katya Szewczuk

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Tara Lazar 

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Lori Degman 

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Laurie Wallmark accepting the Crystal Kyte Award.

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Julie Gribble 

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Tish Rabe

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Jonathan Rockefeller 

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Guy Olivieri and Charlotte Bennardo 

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Closing Keynote Speaker, Suzy Ismail

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Me and Suzy Ismail 

A very big THANK YOU to everyone who made this year’s conference so special. I’m already packing my bags for next year’s conference. I can’t wait!

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NJ SCBWI