For more than two years, I was the lead planner, along with SCBWI Switzerland Illustrator Coordinator, Monika Baum, and SCBWI BeNeLux Regional Advisor, Melanie Rook Welfing, for the 2019 SCBWI Europolitan conference. The conference is a joint initiative between four SCBWI European Regions (France, Germany/Austria, BeNeLux and Switzerland), and the location rotates between the regions, with the Regional Advisor for the host region serving as the lead conference planner. The inaugural conference was held in Paris in 2013, with the following conferences being hosted in Amsterdam (2015) and Brussels(2017). The 2019 conference was hosted at the wonderful Youth Hostel in Zürich (Wollishofen).
We hosted an outstanding faculty of publishing professionals from the US, UK and Swiss children's publishing markets, including editors, literary agents, authors and illustrators (you can check out the entire program here). We were particularly excited to feature participation by local publishing professionals including the Swiss children's book publisher NordSüd (NorthSouth Books/USA), and the world-renowned author/illustrator Marcus Pfister, best known for the internationally best-selling Rainbow Fish books.
If you'd like to read more about the conference, you can check out some of these blog posts by participating faculty, and SCBWI regions:
Author/Illustrator (and faculty member) Elizabeth Dulemba's blog posts with photos about the conference and the open house at NordSüd
SCBWI Switzerland conference round-up blog posts with lots of photos (Day 1, Day 2)
SCBWI German/Austria blogpost with photos
Photo above: The Zürich airport was in a New York state of mind as I was leaving for the 2019 SCBWI Winter Conference in New York City.
It's always rewarding to spend time learning about the craft of writing and the publishing industry at the SCBWI Winter Conference in New York City,, but spending time with my fellow creators tops even that for me. This year I didn't leave on Sunday evening (the day the conference ended). Instead, I spent another day in the city exploring with one of my good friends (who is also an amazing writer and critique partner) who is a native New Yorker. Next time I go to the winter conference, I'm hoping to stay even longer and spend more time in one of my favorite cities.