Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

2019 Conference Crit & Roundtable Schedule

Date(s) - 05/03/2019 - 05/05/2019
12:00 am

Gold Coast Hotel & Casino
4000 W. Flamingo Rd - Las Vegas, NV 89103

If this is your first SCBWI conference, here is a helpful link to prepare for your attendance: Conference Dos and Don’ts



NV SCBWI Annual Pitch Perfect Conference Weekend FAQ



The conference is held in conjunction with the NV Mentorship Program.



Date: May 3, 2019 Mentees and faculty arrive at the conference

Friday, 4:00 – 5:30pm Mentorship Kick-off

Group Dinner at 6:00pm at T.G.I.F.


Pitch Perfect Conference Dates: May 4 – 5, 2019

Saturday – 8:00am – 5:30 pm

Sunday – 8:30am – 2:45 pm



Cynthia Mun – Regional Advisor

702-210-4264 for text messages

Julie Dillard , Assistant Regional Advisor–

Ken Lamug –Illustrator Advisor




Gold Coast Hotel, Casino, and Conference Center

4000 W Flamingo Rd, Las Vegas, NV 89103

Salon C & D in the 2nd floor conference center.

Conference Center is a non-smoking facility on the 2nd floor of the casino. Please look for a sign to the Arizona and Nevada Ballrooms above the escalator that is located towards the eastern part of the casino floor.


For faculty, your room was either reimbursed or paid for by SCBWI NV. You will need a credit card for your personal incidentals. Wifi is included and already paid for as part of the resort fee. Room service is not reimbursed during your stay. The hotel has a gym and a pool.

Parking is available for free in the hotel parking garage.

The hotel is 1.2 miles from the Las Vegas Strip (about a 30 minute walk).



Meals are provided for mentees and faculty during the conference. Vouchers for meals and wristbands are in your registration packet. These are NOT replaceable or refundable.


5/3 Friday night Mentor and Faculty dinner at 6pm. T.G.I.F inside the hotel. SCBWI NV will pay for dinner including one glass of beer or wine for mentees and faculty.


5/4 Saturday breakfast is from 7am – 8:00am at the Port O’Call buffet. You may go at any time after 7am when the buffet opens. The conference keynote begins at 8:30am.

5/4 Saturday lunch at noon. Everyone with a voucher will meet at the buffet to be admitted as a group so that we don’t have to stay in the lunch line.

5/4 Saturday dinner. Port O’Call buffet opens for dinner at 5pm. We have reservations at 6:30 pm as a group.


5/5 Sunday continental breakfast will be available at the conference for mentees and faculty from 7:15 – 8:30 am. Please make sure to have your wrist bracelet and voucher.

5/5 brunch will be served at the Port O’Call buffet at noon.

Coffee and tea will be provided at the conference in the morning only.

We are not allowed to take outside food into the conference.



Clothes: Please dress in layers because the temperature in the room will vary. It is airconditioned, but we can’t adjust the temperature. So, if you tend to get cold, please bring an outer layer.

Writing Implement/Notepad, or laptop: There are no outlets in the conference room so if you bring a laptop, you won’t be able to charge it in the conference room. There will be small notepads and pens but you might want to bring your own to take notes.

If you’re an illustrator, there will be time to work on your work during the picture book workshop. You might want to make sure that your computer will have enough batter to last on Sunday.

Manuscripts/Picture Book Dummies: For Round table, you will receive an email indicating how many copies to bring for your table. Please make sure to format your manuscript in the standard submission format. If you don’t know what that is, there is an example:




Friday, May 3 Nevada Mentorship Kick-off

4:00pm Mentee and Mentor Registration – Meet in Salon C of Gold Coast Conference Center

Directions to Salon C – Follow signs to the Arizona-Nevada Ballroom. There is a large sign above the escalator. Salon C is to the left on the 2nd floor after you go up the escalator.

4:00 – 4:15 pm – Welcome & Review Schedule

4:15 – 5:30pm – Introductions – Mentees, Mentors, Agents, Editor

Dinner at 6:00 – 7:30pm – Meet at T.G.I.F for dinner and drinks





Mentees & Faculty Breakfast – 7:00 – 8:15 am at Port O’Call buffet (Need voucher and bracelet; and it’s on your time.)

8:00 am Welcome – Salon C

8:30 am Keynote – Erin Entrada Kelly: Use Your Voice – How to find and use your voice as a writer, and bring voice to your characters on the page.

9:30 am Agent– Hannah Mann: Standing Out Amongst the Outstanding – Focusing on the content of your manuscript for submission, learn what makes a great manuscript a cut above in the pile.

10:30 am Break

10:45 am First Pages –500 words. Bring 10 copies. Round Table: All agents and author faculty will participate in moderating sessions – Salon D

12:00 pm (11:45am) Lunch at Port O’Call Buffet (Need vouchers & bracelets. We’ll go together as a group to skip the line for mentees, faculty, and prepaid attendees.)

1:15 pm Agent- Quressa Robinson: The Art of Conflict and Personality – Using classic craft techniques and exercises, we’ll plot stories as well as develop existing and new characters. (Writing exercises during workshop)

2:15 pm Speed Pitch Practice: All agents and author faculty will participate in moderating sessions – Salon D

3:30 pm Agent – Karen Grencik: 101+ Reasons for Rejection – In this breakout session, we will cover the most common reasons for rejection and look at examples of real manuscripts and rejection letters. The handout gives actual reasons for rejection, which is not to discourage one but to show the in-depth analysis that each manuscript undergoes. By being aware of these examples, hopefully you can eliminate a few of the possible reasons for rejection before making your submissions.

4:30 pm – Agent & Editor Panel for Queries

5:30 pm – Author Book Signing – Salon C

Book signing will be in Salon C. Barnes and Noble will have books for sale.

6:45 pmDinner at Ports O’ Call Buffet. (Need vouchers & bracelets. We’ll go together as a group to skip the line for mentees, faculty, and prepaid attendees.)


SUNDAY, MAY 5, 2019

Mentee and Faculty Continental Breakfast in Salon D – 7:15 – 8:30 am (Need voucher and bracelet; and it’s on your time.)

8:30 am Welcome

9:00 am Agent – DongWon Song: How to Pitch – This talk covers the fundamentals of how to pitch, not just for your first book, but as a life-long skill. We’ll discuss the role pitching plays as your career progresses and how it can support you at every stage of your career. We’ll go over the core elements of how to construct a pitch, the importance of comp titles, and some basic strategies for refining your hook.

Starting 10:00 am – we will have two tracks of presentations:

TRACK 1 – Writer-illustrators and Illustrators (If you write picture books, we suggest that you stay in this track to learn what happens with illustrators so you have a understanding of how picture books are made and critiqued.)

10:00 am Editor – Kait Feldmann:Reading Images: Components of Visual Storytelling – In this presentation geared towards illustrators and writer-illustrators, we will cover some exciting ways to use art as a narrative form. Come hungry to feast your eyes on lots and lots of picture books and graphic novels that play with components like page-turn, gutter, white space, paneling, perspective, color, and more!

11:00 am Picture Book Workshop with Arree Chung, Ken Lamug, and Kait Feldmann

12:15 pm Lunch (Prepaid vouchers. We’ll need to go together as a group to skip the line for mentees and all faculty.)

1:30 pm Continuation of Picture Book Workshop

2:45 pm End of Conference


TRACK 2 – Writers 

10:00 am – Heather Petty: Query Writing Workshop

11:00 am – Jim Averbeck: Synopsis Writing Workshop

12:00 noon Lunch (11:45am)

1:15 pm – Pitch with Kait Feldmann, Karen Grencik, and DongWon Song

2:45 pm End of Conference


In-Person Critique Schedule

Writers & Illustrators, please be on time. If you arrive late, you’ll lose your allotted time.

Agent/Editor Critique Location Sat Sun First Name Last Name
DongWon Song Hallway Chairs 10:15 Laura Mitzner
DongWon Song Hallway Chairs 10:30 sharon eberhardt
DongWon Song Hallway Chairs 10:45 James Kirkland
Agent/Editor Critique Location Sat Sun First Name Last Name
Hannah Mann Round Tables 8:30 Michelle Arquette
Hannah Mann Round Tables 1:30 Shannon Cangey
Hannah Mann Round Tables 1:45 David McMullin
Hannah Mann Round Tables 3:30 Ginger Meurer
Hannah Mann Round Tables 3:45 Shereen Sepitko
Hannah Mann Round Tables 4:00 Stephanie Villamor
Agent/Editor Critique Location Sat Sun First Name Last Name
Kait Feldmann Round Tables 9:30 Deirdre Voldseth
Kait Feldmann Round Tables 9:45 Jade Griffin
Kait Feldmann Round Tables 10:00 Jeff Faville
Kait Feldmann Round Tables 10:15 Kristen Kiesling
Kait Feldmann Round Tables 1:15 Laurie Young
Kait Feldmann Round Tables 1:30 Tisha Hamilton
Kait Feldmann Round Tables 1:45 Sue Dugan
Kait Feldmann Round Tables 3:30 Sarah Elliott
Kait Feldmann Round Tables 3:45 Myrna Foster
Kait Feldmann Round Tables 4:00 Nick Josten
Kait Feldmann Hallway Chairs 9:00 Judith C. Owens-Lalude
Kait Feldmann Hallway Chairs 9:15 Rebecca Reeder
Agent/Editor Critique Location Sat Sun First Name Last Name
Karen Grencik Hallway Chairs 11:00 Deborah Izzi
Karen Grencik Hallway Chairs 11:15 Sharon Sivinski
Karen Grencik Hallway Chairs 11:30 Stefanie Tatalias
Karen Grencik Hallway Chairs 1:30 Cindy Leopold-Ritsko
Karen Grencik Hallway Chairs 1:45 Catherine O’Toole
Agent/Editor Critique Location Sat Sun First Name Last Name
Quressa Robinson Round Tables 9:30 Emily Mangini
Quressa Robinson Round Tables 9:45 Yasmine Mahdavi
Quressa Robinson Round Tables 10:00 Ipuna Black
Quressa Robinson Round Tables 10:15 sandra brown
Quressa Robinson Round Tables 3:30 Nancy Cortez
Quressa Robinson Round Tables 3:45 Aldema Ridge


DINING OPTIONS: There are several food and beverage options in the Gold Coast:

Port O’Call Buffet, Subway, Ping Pang Pong, Noodle Exchange, T.G.I.F. Red Zone Sports Bar, Bowling Snack Bar, and Java Vegas.