New York, the weather and all that ...

Like you know, last week end New York for the SCBWI winter conference. The weather played havoc with us and flights were canceled out of Portland, ME. It was interesting to think of illustrators and childrens' authors stranded around the country (if not the world ... many international attendees at the conference too). Sitting in airports, working on stories, sketching. Or maybe just stuffing their faces on airport food. But still. A community on the move.

As it turned out Amtrak prevailed and we got to NY only several hours later than planned. Trudged through the snow from Penn Station to Grand Central as theYellow Taxis decided we weren't good enough for them.

So here's what happened:
(There was no champagne but I like the image.) But much beer and cocktails.

And there was partying:

 I learned a lot:
I met old friends and new ones and had lunch with my mentor Priscilla Burris.

I had a GREAT time in the pub with some awesome and legendary illustrators ... (no name dropping today)

I didn't win the grand prize in the showcase :-(

We went out and DINED 

And then it was all over and time to fly home. 

To more snow.

I have been reflecting on the year since the last conference in NY. My first back then with the SCBWI. I knew no-one, and I knew little about the business. This year I knew a heck of a lot of people and am far more educated in the ways of publishing. It DID feel like coming home.
Had time to nip over to the Gift trade Show at Javits Centre (thanks to a complimentary ticket), and checked out the licensing exhibitors. It's something to think about, but not sure if it is something I want to devote time to right now ...

It felt very empty in the studio on my return. I was talking about this with a fellow illustrator this week. How hard it is to leave the 'womb' esp. in a cold winter. The effort gets harder. You say 'I should go out - I need to be amongst people - I need to be stimulated', and then when you go out, or away to a conference, you are longing to get back to your hole, your drawing board, your computer, your pen and paper. There must be a little of the agraphobic in all those who work alone for most of the time. So there we were in New York, a conference full of nutballz.

This week ... back to work ... slowly, but surely. The chapter book looks like it is a goer (contract next week) so I am a happy bunny ... 2 books to work on!

Decided to give up the agent search for a while. I am happy with what's going down, and this week I will make a concerted effort to submit the math book series I worked on last year. I haven't really sent them out yet, and now is the time to give them some attention.

I am off for some R&R in front of the tele. 'im indoors went skiing today (!!!!!) so he is soaking in the hot bath. You won't catch me throwing myself down the slopes.

Signing off for this week ...

aka The Wacky Brit

On the Bedside Table:

Benny and Penny - Geoffrey Hayes
SockSquatch - Frank W Dormer
I'm Bad!Kate and Jim McMullan