SCBWI

Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Member Good News

Let’s support our Mid Atlantic members by celebrating their good news!

Have good news of your own? Share it here.

 

My second novel, a YA drama/suspense will be published next April from Fire and Ice! — Debbie Schrack

Debbie Schrack is the author of SAVING SOPHIE, a young adult contemporary romance, and the winner of the Haunted States of America contest for the state of Virginia. She lives in Fairfax, Virginia, a suburb of Washington, D.C. When she’s not conjuring dark and twisty plots or hanging out with her family, you can find her poring over travel brochures, ready to check off another box on her bucket list of travel adventures. You can follow Debbie on Facebook or Twitter @debbie_schrack or contact her through her website.

 

My poem “Zany” appears in the poetry anthology THINGS WE FEEL edited by Janet Wong and Sylvia Vardell. All proceeds go to IBBY. — Marcie Flinchum Atkins

Marcie Flinchum Atkins is a teacher-librarian by day and a children’s book writer in the wee hours of the morning. She holds an M.A. and M.F.A. in Children’s Literature from Hollins University. She is the author of Ancient China (ABDO, 2015), “Rookie Get Ready to Code” series (Scholastic Children’s Press, 2019), Wait, Rest, Pause: Dormancy in Nature (Millbrook Press, 2019), and is a contributor to Things We Feel edited by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong (Pomelo Books, 2022). She is the nonfiction events coordinator for the Mid-Atlantic chapter of SCBWI. She also muses about mentor texts, making time to write, and poetry at www.marcieatkins.com. You can follow her on Twitter and Instagram .

 

I’m happy to share news that a have a new book releasing on October 25th: A BONE FOR BO, PAINTING WITH GEORGIA O’KEEFFE. This is the third book in this series that features an introduction to famous artists through the eyes of the artist’s pets or animals that live nearby. Georgia O’Keeffe’s time in New Mexico and the paintings she created that were inspired by the region solidified her legacy as one of the most famous American modernists. But did you ever wonder how an artist like O’Keeffe found her inspiration to begin experimenting with new and different colors schemes and compositions? This endearing narrative hints at how Georgia O’Keeffe may have found her fresh perspective in the Red Hills of New Mexico, by imagining the relationship between the famous painter and her dog. — Joan Waites

Joan Waites Is an award-winning author-illustrator, with numerous titles illustrated for the children’s trade and educational markets, and the author-illustrator of three picture books with forthcoming titles to be released in fall 2022 and spring 2023. A former adjunct faculty member of the Corcoran Museum School of Art and Design’s aspiring artists programs, Joan continues to teach art enrichment for children and adults. She served for 20 years as the Mid-Atlantic SCBWI Illustrator Coordinator, and is a member of the Children’s Book Guild of Washington D.C., and The National Art Educators Association.

Learn more about Joan on her website and find her on Instagram and Facebook.


 

Delighted to share the picture book LEAVES TO MY KNEES by Ellen Mayer and illustrated by Nicole Tadgell will be published this Fall by Star Bright Books! — Nicole Tadgell

Nicole Tadgell is the illustrator of more than thirty picture books, including ASTRONAUT ANNIE, FOLLOW ME DOWN TO NICODEMUS TOWN and TIARA’S HAT PARADE. Nicole’s work has been honored with the Christopher’s Award, the Kansas State Notable Award, the Arkansas Diamond Primary Book Award, the Américas Award, and the Children’s Africana Book Award. Nicole has taught workshops and classes at Museums, colleges, and conferences. Nicole also shares presentations demonstrating the picture book creative process.

Learn more about Nicole on her website and find her on Instagram here and here and on Facebook here and here.


 

My newest book MOUSE CALLS is coming out from Beach LaneBooks/Simon & Schuster on August 23. The illustrator, Erin Kraan, does her work with woodcuts, and I can’t wait for you to see the thirty-nine animals she created for the illustrations. — Anne Marie Pace

 

Charlottesville, VA – 6/24/22 – Anne Marie Pace Author Photo.
Photo by Amanda Maglione

In spite of the adage to write what you know, I have never been a vampire, a ballerina, a groundhog, or a tow truck driver. I am a picture book author. My latest book is MOUSE CALLS, illustrated by Erin Kraan, from Beach Lane Books (Simon & Schuster). Other books include GROUNDHUG DAY (Little, Brown), BUSY-EYED DAY (Beach Lane Books), SUNNY’S TOW TRUCK SAVES THE DAY (Abrams) and the four books of the VAMPIRINA BALLERINA series (Disney-Hyperion), which were adapted into the hit Disney Junior animated series VAMPIRINA. I live in Charlottesville with my husband, three cats, and two dogs, and love frequent visits from my young adult children.

Learn more about Anne on her website and find her on Instagram and Twitter.


 

Up, up, and away! “High Flyers: 15 Inspiring Women Aviators and Astronauts” releases July 19, 2022. Look inside for never-before-told stories of jet and commercial pilots, helicopter and small plane aviators, and out-of-this-world astronauts. Each woman’s journey to flight will make your heart soar! — Ann McCallum Staats

 

Ann McCallum Staats is the award-winning author of multiple books. Her newest is “High Flyers: 15 Inspiring Women Aviators and Astronauts” (July 2022), part of the Women of Power series with Chicago Review Press. Most of her books are about nonfiction topics like aviation, space, extreme sports, cooking, and STEM. She grew up in a small, remote town in British Columbia, Canada where she had the whole outside world to explore. She’s been curious ever since! Ann is represented by James McGowan at BookEnds Literary. She currently lives in Virginia where her desk faces a view of the woods.

Learn more about Ann on her website and find her on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

 

I am very excited to announce that my first picture book, “Sweet Little You”, will be officially released on August 1, 2022, and is available for preorder now! A mother with a dream of having a child makes her wish come true by having a baby on her own. Tenderly written with beautiful painterly illustrations by Lisa Wee, “Sweet Little You” is a loving and unique story about a different path to becoming a family, showing that creating a cherished family doesn’t always involve two parents. — Joni Halabi

Children’s book author Joni Halabi first entrée into publishing was spurred by what she saw as a necessity. A single mother by choice who lovingly took a less customary path to having a child on her own, Joni was frustrated by the lack of selection for picture books that depicted families like hers. Though many “welcome baby” and storybooks addressed varying family structures, few spoke about single mothers by choice. She wanted her daughter to see her own type of family represented, so she wrote one and “Sweet Little You” was born.

The books that Joni writes are personal stories based on books she wishes existed about her life’s path. “Sweet Little You” is the book she wished she had for her daughter when she was born. She hopes that her book resonates with other families like hers who will appreciate their relatively unique family structure being portrayed in a story that their child can relate to.

Joni is a web developer at Georgetown University and conference speaker who writes technical articles as well as a blog focusing on her life and journey to becoming a mother. When she isn’t busy writing poignant stories for families and children, she enjoys running, doing yoga, reading, listening to podcasts, and seeing live music near her home in the Washington, D.C. area. A new pursuit of Joni’s is learning to play the ukulele. “Sweet Little You” is her debut picture book.

Learn more about Joni on her website and find her on Twitter.


 

My new picture book LITTLE RED AND THE BIG BAD EDITOR is coming from Aladdin on September 6, 2022. From the publisher: “In this clever and playful fractured fairy tale picture book, the Big Bad Wolf is so distracted by Little Red’s poorly written thank you note to her grandmother that he keeps missing the chance to eat her!” LITTLE RED AND THE BIG BAD EDITOR has wonderful illustrations by Shanda McCloskey. You can see the cover here and art samples on Shanda’s website or on Amazon. — Rebecca Kraft Rector

 

Rebecca Kraft Rector is a retired librarian and the author of more than thirty fiction and nonfiction books for children, including her debut picture book SQUISH SQUASH SQUISHED. Her cats Ollie and Opal keep her company while she writes. When she isn’t writing and eating chocolate, she’s trying to keep deer out of her garden. LITTLE RED AND THE BIG BAD EDITOR is Rebecca’s second picture book, coming from Aladdin/Simon & Schuster on September 6, 2022.

Learn more about Rebecca on her website and find her on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.


 

I’m so thrilled that DETOUR AHEAD, co-authored with Tracy López, was published by PJ Publishing this spring! Half in verse and half in prose, this dual-POV MG depicts the friendship between Gilah, a neurodiverse Jewish girl preparing for her bat mitzvah, and Guillermo, a Salvadoran American boy who is new to Washington, D.C. Riding the bus together every day, Gilah and Guillermo learn to navigate life’s detours. — Pamela Ehrenberg

 

In addition to being a co-author of DETOUR AHEAD, Pamela Ehrenberg is the author of the young readers’ novels Ethan, Suspended and Tillmon County Fire as well as two picture books (Queen of the Hanukkah Dosas and Planting Parsley). She works at the National Association for the Education of Young Children and lives with her daughter and son near the National Zoo in Washington, DC–two blocks from the H4 bus route that is the subject of this novel!

 

Learn more about Pamela on her website and find her on Facebook and Twitter.

 

 

I was accepted to the 2022 Write Mentor Programme. For four months over the summer, I will work with author-mentor Eva Wong Nava on two fiction picture book manuscripts and one non-fiction picture book biography. In the fall, I will have the opportunity to present my work in an agent showcase. — Naisa Beaumont

I’m an Indian-American immigrant, mom of two young readers and an environmental scientist. I am a pre-published writer of picture books and young adult fiction. I love taking nature walks and baking with my daughters and husband in Stone Ridge, VA.

Find Naisa on Instagram and Twitter.


 

I’m channeling my love for dancing and writing in a three-title bilingual (English-Spanish) board book set, ¡1,2,3 Baila! Each title will teach primary topics while infusing top Latin dances and culture. This set will publish in fall 2023. — Delia Ruiz

Delia Ruiz is a Latinx author and content creator. She holds a BA in Elementary Education and a Master’s in Differentiated Instruction in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). Delia loves expressing herself via writing and hopes to inspire the next generation of writers who also come from immigrant households. Delia resides in Virginia and enjoys salsa dancing, reading, writing, and walking her pug.

Learn more about Delia on her website and find her on Instagram .


 

 

 

My entry into SCBWI’s 2021 Magazine Merit Award Competition, “Snot-Copter: Drone at Work” from the February 2021 issue of Spider, was named an Honor winner in the nonfiction category. Award winners were announced in the April issue of Insight. — Dionna L. Mann

 


 

My debut picture book MY PIANO will release with Gnome Road Publishing in 2023! — Jen Fier Jasinski

 

 

Jen Fier Jasinski grew up outside of Washington, D.C. and spent most of her childhood exploring creeks and reading books. She has taught special education for more than ten years, where her favorite part of the school day continues to be Story Time. Jen enjoys spending time with her spouse and kids, reading, and playing outside. Her favorite days are when she gets to do all three. Her extra favorite days include cake.

 

Learn more about Jen on her website and find her on Instagram and Twitter.


 

I had a great time writing When the Sahara Was a Seaway that is published in the April issue of Cricket-Muse. — Devin A. Reese

Devin Reese spent years radiotracking aquatic turtles as a field biologist in California. Now, she writes about turtles and many other science topics for a range of audiences as the Executive Editor for Natural History and freelance writer for Cricket, Complexly, AAAS, and other outlets. Devin lives in the Alexandria, VA where she and her husband raised their kids.
Learn more about Devin on her website and find her on LinkedIn.

 

My story “Alex Crown and the Bunny Man” won the SCBWI Haunted States of America contest for the state of Virginia. My novel SAVING SOPHIE will be out in April from Fire and Ice Publishing. — Debbie Schrack

 

Debbie Schrack has spent her professional life working with children and young adults. She has a B.S in Special Education from the University of Virginia, and an M.Ed. from George Mason University. Although the character Sophie in her debut novel SAVING SOPHIE is fictional, she is a composite of many of the struggling learners Debbie has taught over the years. Debbie lives with her family in Fairfax, Virginia, a suburb of Washington, D.C. Debbie finds personal fulfillment in creating new things, whether it be a novel, a painting, or a batch of croissants. She loves animals, and horses are her special passion. When she’s not writing or horseback riding, Debbie is a sucker for musicals, enjoys visiting art galleries, and desperately wants to travel more. She also loves hanging out with her three children, who she will always consider her most amazing creations.

Learn more about Debbie on her website and find her on Twitter and Facebook.

 

I received the SCBWI YA Spark Award for Self Publishing! I’m so grateful to  SCBWI for this amazing honor and opportunity! — Joyana Peters

Joyana Peters is the Indie author of the best-selling novel, The Girl in the Triangle. The Girl in the Triangle won the YA Spark Award from SCBWI and was a Top Five Finalist for Shelf Unbound’s Indie Best Book of the Year. Joyana got her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of New Orleans in 2014. She has taught literature and composition on both the secondary and university levels. She also writes non-fiction and has been published in digital and print publications nationwide. Joyana currently lives in Northern Virginia where she takes in the sights of DC with her two kids, husband, and goofy Yellow Lab, Gatsby. 

Learn more about Joyana on her website and find her on Instagram and Facebook.


 

My second picture book, A SQUAWK OF SPANISH, has been acquired for publication in 2024 by Charlesbridge. — Gabriella Aldeman

Gabriella Aldeman is a Panamanian American author and translator of children’s books and educational resources. She is also an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and the American Translators Association. She has translated various picture books into Spanish and is the author of two forthcoming picture books, Paula’s Patches (Free Spirit Publishing) and A Squawk of Spanish (Charlesbridge).

Learn more about Gabriella on her website and find her on Instagram and Twitter.


 

 

 

My poem and short article, “The Books of Timbuktu,” appeared in the February 2022 issue of Cricket magazine! — Jennifer Richter

Learn more about Jennifer on Twitter.


 

We are thrilled to announce our debut children’s book is officially available for pre-order! — Natalie Manzanares

Natalie Manzanares is a Mom, Baker, and Entrepreneur living in Historic Leesburg, Virginia. M. Sharif works in finance by trade, living with her loving husband in Northern Virginia. Penning children’s stories was not something these best friends saw in their future. Together, they share this debut book, showcasing their love of nature, tea shops, and delicious almond cookies.

Learn more about Natalie on her website and find her on Instagram and Facebook.


 

I’ll be leading a workshop for SCBWI MD/DE/WV at their Spring Conference. The workshop is March 11-13, 2022 at the Maritime Conference Center in Linthicum Heights, MD. The topic is “Stage Fright Is Your Friend – And Other Things You Need to Know About Public Speaking.” — Joy Jones

Learn more about Joy on her website and find her on Twitter and Instagram.


 

I sold my first picture book! Paula’s Patches was acquired by Free Spirit Publishing and will be released next year (Fall 2023). — Gabriella Aldeman

Gabriella Aldeman is a Panamanian American author and translator of children’s books and educational resources. She is an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and the American Translators Association. She has translated various picture books into Spanish and is the author of the forthcoming picture book, Paula’s Patches (Free Spirit Publishing).
Learn more about Gabriella on her website and find her on Twitter.

 

I am delighted to announce my publishing contract with the South Dakota Historical Society Press for my debut non-fiction picture book manuscript, GEORGIA JIPP: BLIZZARD PILOT, aimed for ages four to eight. — Laura Dean

GEORGIA JIPP: BLIZZARD PILOT is about a courageous twenty-two-year-old airplane pilot who risked her life to fly mercy missions in South Dakota during the devastating winter of 1949. After a record-breaking blizzard isolated farmers, ranchers, and animals, Georgia flew from dawn to dusk, delivering desperately needed food, fuel, and hay. When further blizzards struck, Georgia partnered with the American Red Cross to fly many more life-saving missions. Young Georgia Jipp’s perseverance and bravery will inspire readers to soar through the unexpected storms of life with a vision for helping others.

I discovered Georgia Jipp while performing research for another book set in South Dakota. Intrigued by young Georgia’s fortitude in flying under dangerous conditions, I resolved to discover all that could be found about her, an endeavor which required perseverance in performing original research. It will be the first book of any genre ever published about Georgia Jipp. I am profoundly grateful for the privilege of introducing this unknown hero to kids around the world.

Laura Dean has long been captivated by the wonder of peoples’ stories. As a child growing up on four continents, she was raised on multicultural stories. When she grew up, she became a Registered Nurse who listened to her patients’ stories. She relishes tropical storms and flying in all manner of airplanes from two-seaters to Jumbo Jets. Laura lives in Southwest Virginia, where she searches for wonder with her husband and three kids.


 

“Two of my books published this January! “Just Help!” Written By Sonia Sotomayor Illustrated by Angela Dominguez & “I’m Hungry! ¡Tengo Hambre!” Written and Illustrated by Angela Dominguez” — Angela Dominguez

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Angela was born in Mexico City and grew up in the great state of Texas. She now resides on the east coast with her boyfriend, Kyle, and their petite dog, Petunia. She is also the author and illustrator of several books for children and a two-time Pura Belpré Illustration Honoree. Her debut middle grade novel, Stella Díaz Has Something To Say, was a New York Public Library and a Chicago Public Library pick for Best Books for Kids, Sid Fleischman Award winner, and an ALA Notable. She recently illustrated Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s newest picture book, Just Help! How to Build a Better World. When Angela is not in her studio or visiting schools, she teaches at the Academy of Art University, which honored her with their Distinguished Alumni Award in 2013. Angela is a proud member of SCBWI, PEN America, and represented by Wernick and Pratt Literary Agency. As a child, she loved reading books and making a mess creating pictures. She’s delighted to still be doing both.

Learn more about Angela on her website


 

“My first book entirely illustrated by me, ANTARCTICA: THE MELTING CONTINENT, will be out this April. Plus, my upcoming graphic novel with HarperCollins, THE TRAVELER’S GUIDE TO GEOZOOLOGY, set for 2024 publication, was announced last month!” — Angela Hsieh

Angela is a Taiwanese American illustrator and author whose life choices can mostly be explained by her love of goofy animals. Her clients include the New York Times, Scientific American, NPR, and Pop-Up Magazine. She illustrated ANTARCTICA: THE MELTING CONTINENT (What on Earth Books, April 2022) and is currently writing and illustrating THE TRAVELER’S GUIDE TO GEOZOOLOGY (HarperCollins, 2024), a graphic novel about adventure and discovery, about the way that language and distance shape relationships, and about giant animals.
Learn more about Angela on her website or find her on Twitter and Instagram.

 

“I’m excited to share that in January I received in the mail a box with copies of two of my work-for-hire books published by Capstone!” — Dionna L. Mann

Find out more about Dionna and her books here.


 

“I signed a contract with Brandylane/Belle Isle Books for my Save the Trees manuscript.”

— Leslie Eva Tayloe

Leslie Eva Tayloe graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice at the University of Nevada and later earned a Master’s Degree in Human Resource Management from the University of Maryland. She retired from the federal government in an analyst position and then became a substitute teacher for three years for elementary school children. Currently, Leslie writes full time. She and her partner, Michael live on a farm in Virginia with two cats and a dog. With a combined family, Leslie and Michael have four adult children, and three grandchildren.

Learn more about Leslie on her website or find her on TwitterInstagram, and Facebook


 

“My YA novel SAVING SOPHIE will be published April 2022 from Fire and Ice Publishing.” — Debbie Schrack

Debbie Schrack has spent her professional life working with children and young adults. She has a B.S in Special Education from the University of Virginia, and an M.Ed. from George Mason University. Although the character Sophie in her debut novel SAVING SOPHIE is fictional, she is a composite of many of the struggling learners Debbie has taught over the years. Debbie lives with her family in Fairfax, Virginia, a suburb of Washington, D.C. Debbie finds personal fulfillment in creating new things, whether it be a novel, a painting, or a batch of croissants. She loves animals, and horses are her special passion. When she’s not writing or horseback riding, Debbie is a sucker for musicals, enjoys visiting art galleries, and desperately wants to travel more. She also loves hanging out with her three children, who she will always consider her most amazing creations.

Learn more about Debbie on her website or find her on Twitter and Facebook


 

I signed with agent Liz Nealon at Great Dog Literary.” — Luce Williams

Learn more about Great Dog Literary and find Luce on Twitter and Instagram


 

MUSHROOM RAIN is being released by Sleeping Bear Press March 15, 2022 by me, illustrated by Jamie Green — Laura K Zimmermann

Laura K. Zimmermann is a college professor by day and children’s writer by night. She has published numerous academic articles as well as nonfiction stories in children’s magazines. MUSHROOM RAIN is her first picture book. When she’s not writing, Laura can be found teaching and conducting research at Shenandoah University or wandering through nature with her Goldendoodle, Tivy. You can find Laura online at laurakzimmermann.com and on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest at @LauraK_PBwriter.

Learn more about Laura on her website or find her on Twitter or Instagram