Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators




All attendees are welcome to submit to the editors and agents AFTER the conference. We will have submission guidelines for each of them in your packets, along with stickers you may use to place on your submission envelopes, identifying you as an attendee at our conference.

NOTE: Speakers who are offering 1-on-1 critiques, marketing/publicity consultations and portfolio consultations have that noted in their bios. You must register online for any of these offerings.


Andrew Karre

Andrew Karre

Read a wonderful interview with Andrew by RMC member extraordinaire Kim Tomsic.

In 2005, Andrew Karre helped launch the YA imprint Flux. He was an editorial director at Lerner Publishing Group from 2008 through 2014, overseeing Carolrhoda Books and founding Carolrhoda Lab. He has published first novels by such bestselling authors as Maggie Stiefvater, A.S. King, Carrie Jones, Blythe Woolston, Carrie Mesrobian, and E.K. Johnston. In 2015, he joined Dutton Books for Young Readers as executive editor, focusing on YA and MG, fiction and nonfiction. He works from his home in St. Paul, Minnesota. Andrew will be offering a limited number of one-on-one manuscript critiques.


Emma Ledbetter

Emma Ledbetter

Read a wonderful interview with Emma by RMC member extraordinaire Kim Tomsic.

Emma Ledbetter is an Associate Editor at Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. Emma works on a variety of children’s books, with a particular passion for picture books of all stripes and voice-driven middle grade novels. Recent books Emma edited include I DON'T LIKE KOALA by Sean Ferrell, illustrated by Charles Santoso, and WHAT ABOUT MOOSE? by Corey Rosen Schwartz and Rebecca J. Gomez, illustrated by Keika Yamaguchi. She is especially fond of Edward Gorey, Clementine, and Frances the Badger. Emma will be offering a limited number of one-on-one manuscript critiques.


Semadar MeggedSemadar Megged

Semadar Megged grew up in Israel (hence the accent) and had an eclectic higher education – a year in film school; a year studying theater/stage design; three years of fine art – all ended up very relevant to the art of directing picture books. After a couple of years freelancing as a book jacket designer, she entered the world of children’s books as a designer for Dutton, BDD and Putnam, leading eventually to her present position as Philomel’s art director, where she has worked with Loren Long, Patricia Polacco, David Small, Ed Young, Will Hillenbrand, Floyd Cooper and many others. Semadar will be offering a limited number of portfolio consultations.

Kristin NelsonKristin Nelson  

Read a wonderful interview with Kristin by RMC member extraordinaire Kim Tomsic.

Kristin established Nelson Literary Agency, LLC, in 2002 and over the last decade of her career has represented over thirty-five New York Times bestselling titles and many USA Today bestsellers.  Clients include Jamie Ford, Hugh Howey, Ally Carter, Marie Lu, Stacey Lee, Gail Carriger, Simone Elkeles, Jasinda Wilder, Courtney Milan, and RITA-award winners Sherry Thomas and Linnea Sinclair.

She is currently looking for literary commercial novels, big crossover novels with one foot squarely in genre, upmarket women's fiction, lead title or hardcover science fiction and fantasy, single-title romance (with a special passion for historicals), and young adult and upper-level middle grade novels in all genres. When she is not busy selling books, Kristin attempts to play golf & tennis. She also enjoys playing Bridge (where she is the youngest person in her club), and can be found hiking in the mountains with her husband and their dog Chutney. Kristin will be offering a limited number of one-on-one manuscript critiques.


Deborah WarrenDeborah Warren         

East/West Literary Agency is, purposely, a boutique agency, to facilitate hands-on, personalized service and attention to our authors and their books.  E/W represents a wide range of #1 NYT, #1 PW, IndieBound, USA Today, WSJ, and Amazon best-selling and best-illustrated, Newbery, Coretta Scott King, Geisel medalists, as well as Andre Norton, Gelett Burgess, Children’s Choice, Parents’ Choice, Prism, Audie, Green Earth and Crystal Kite award-winners and nominees. Deborah Warren founded E/W in 2000, after 17 years at Harcourt, and has a strong background in sales and marketing. She’s a strategist, incorporating long-term goals to help E/W clients not only grow a career, but to flourish within that career. With over 35 years’ of experience in the publishing industry, and over 15 years at the helm of the Agency, Deborah not only represents authors and illustrators of picture books including Jim Averbeck (One Word for Sophia), Anna Dewdney (of the Llama Llama franchise), Kimberly and James Dean (of the Pete the Cat franchise), Gianna Marino (Night Animals) and Antoinette Portis (Wait), she represents authors and illustrators—both debut and established–in the board book, concept, novelty, multicultural, non-fiction, middle-grade and young adult markets. 

She’s particularly drawn to author/illustrators and appreciates a wide range of illustration styles. Deborah also connects with the look and feel and concept of classic Star Trek and Twilight Zone episodes … so she’s up to see anything in that genre. OH; and re-imaginings of fairy tales, too, like Beauty and the Beast and The Princess Bride.  And anything that offers diverse points of view.  Deborah’s looking to fall in love with character-driven stories with heart, enhanced by a hook, told in a unique, fresh or distinctive way. Her sweet spots: short, quirky picture books and smartly layered, memorable and insightful MG and YA fiction.  And she LOVES finding debut talent – in fact, it’s a bit of a specialty for the Agency. Deborah will be offering a limited number of one-on-one manuscript critiques.



Stacy Whitman is the founder and publisher of Tu Books, the imprint of Lee & Low Books that publishes diverse middle grade and young adult fiction for children and young adults. Books she has edited include Top Ten Quick Picks title KILLER OF ENEMIES by Joseph Bruchac, and SUMMER OF THE MARIPOSAS by Guadalupe Garcia McCall, which received a starred review from School Library Journal and was named to the Lone Star Reading List. She also founded the New Visions Award, which honors a new writer of color. Stacy holds a master’s degree in children’s literature from Simmons College. Stacy will be offering a limited number of one-on-one manuscript critiques.




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Leslie Ann Clark

My name is Leslie Ann Clark. I am an illustrator/designer and author living in Longmont Colorado. My jobs vary each day, from writing stories to illustrating and then licensing all my characters. Some of my art has been licensed on fabrics, journals, puzzles, cards, clothing, gifts, and more. Each day I create characters that bring a smile to my face. Colors WOW me and good ideas are like eating dessert all day! The hardest thing is knowing what to do first! Licensing my art brought me through the doors to publishing all my books. 

Some of my clients through the years have been Harper Collins Publishing, Group Publishing, Ladybug Magazine, Paramount Cards, Design Design, Abby Press, Currant Co, Clothworks, Christian Art Gifts and la la la!


Bobbi Collier-MoralesRoberta Collier-Morales

Illustration has been a passion in Bobbi Collier-Morales’ life since she was a child. Her career started 28 years ago, and has grown and expanded as the skills, equipment and industry have changed. She’s illustrated for the trade book, mass market, religious and educational markets. In the last three years, she’s added licensing and designing to her resume. “I’ve been doing this long enough that I’ve seen our industry change drastically since I started. Learning the ropes takes effort and a good network of others who are professionals to help navigate the publishing maze. I’ve learned from some of the best, had some hard lessons and have been given a hand up by many generous people. I want to return that favor to illustrators who are new to the market.”



Melanie Crowder Author Photo

Melanie Crowder

Melanie Crowder holds an MFA in writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts and is the author of three novels: Audacity, Parched and A Nearer Moon. Her work has received many honors, including Bank Street's Best Books of the Year, a Junior Library Guild selection, a Silver Medal in the Parents' Choice Awards, and a collective five starred reviews. When she isn't writing, Melanie can be found teaching, reading, daydreaming, or exploring the beautiful state of Colorado where she and her family live.




Julie Danneberg

Even as a child, Julie Danneberg made up stories and created her own books. She was inspired to try writing for children after she became an elementary school teacher. In addition to being a writer, she is also a middle school reading teacher. She is the author of many books for young readers including FIRST DAY JITTERS; FIELDTRIP FIASCO and her recently released picture book biography, MUIR WRESTLES A WATERFALL.



Erin Dealy

Erin Dealey    @ErinDealey

ERIN DEALEY writes in many genres, from board books to YA. Titles include the forthcoming PETER EASTER FROG (Caitlyn Dlouhy Books/Atheneum), and DECK THE WALLS (Sleeping Bear Press) a kids’-eye view of the holidays. Her first picture books with Atheneum, GOLDIE LOCKS HAS CHICKEN POX, and LITTLE BO PEEP CAN’T GET TO SLEEP have taken her to school visits as far south as Brazil and as far north as Tok, Alaska. Dealey is an experienced K-12 Language Arts/ theater teacher, actor, Area3WritingProject fellow, frequent conference presenter, and the social media/PR Coordinator for East West Literary. She lives in northern California and proudly lasted one full day as an employee at a Pineapple Factory in Hawaii. If you’re still reading this bio (thanks!), check out her Writer’s Rap at


Lindsay ElandLindsay Eland

Lindsay Eland wanted to be a writer ever since the fifth grade when her book, What Can You Learn From a Giflyaroo, won an honorable mention in a writing contest at her local library. She is the author of two middle grade novels, Scones and Sensibility (Lerner) and A Summer of Sundays (Lerner). Her third book, Five Times Revenge (Greenwillow) will release in 2016. She lives in Breckenridge, Colorado with her husband, four children, three dogs, and four lizards. 



Jenny GoebelJenny Goebel

Jenny Goebel is the author of the middle grade novel, Grave Images (Scholastic, 2013), and the picture book, Foreman Farley Has a Backhoe (Penguin Core Concepts, 2014). Forthcoming novels include: The 39 Clues: Doublecross, Mission Hurricane (Scholastic, 2016), and Fortune Falls (Scholastic, 2016). She has worked as both an elementary school teacher and as a headstone engraver. A native Coloradan and graduate of CU Boulder, she now lives in Westminster with her firefighting husband, three sons and a deceitfully innocent-looking dog.



Nancy Oswald

Nancy Oswald

Nancy Oswald loves researching and writing historical fiction books for young readers. She has, however, written in a variety of genres including biography and MG humor. She is a retired teacher and lives on a family ranch in south-central Colorado where she and her husband raise natural beef. Nancy has been the recipient of the Willa Literary Award, is a two time Spur finalist and Spur winner, a two time Evvy Award Winner, and has been a Colorado Book Award, and Colorado Author’s League Finalist. 




Dan Yaccarino

Dan Yaccarino is an acclaimed author and illustrator of many children’s books including Doug Unplugged, Unlovable and The Fantastic Undersea Life of Jacques Cousteau; the creator and producer of the animated series the Parents Choice Award-winning Oswald and the Emmy-winning Willa's Wild Life, as well as the character designer behind the Emmy-winning The Backyardigans. His books have won a host of prestigious awards including the New York Times Best Illustrated award, an ALA Notable designation, a Parents Choice Award, and the Bologna Ragazzi. Dan lives with his family in New York City. Dan will be offering a limited number of one-on-one manuscript critiques and portfolio consultations.