Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

The Write Direction

Write-Direction-Logologo by Zoey Abbott


What is The Write Direction?

The Write Direction is an informal gathering where members meet to socialize and talk about children’s writing and illustrating. It is a support/fellowship/networking meeting. Often there are no guest speakers at The Write Direction. Nor is extensive critiquing done. These are always free! Although some groups meet in coffee shops/restaurants and it is courtesy to purchase something in those cases.

For purposes of comfort and safety, gatherings are usually held in public venues (libraries, churches, parks, restaurants, bookstores, etc.). A topic for discussion may be chosen ahead of time to “get the ball rolling,” but the object is to encourage everyone to participate. Input from attendees with experience related to the topic is always welcome. Or participants may attend an event together (e.g. a booksigning, author appearance, etc.).

SCBWI has a zero-tolerance policy against harassment of any kind. Any violation of this
policy is actionable. Go here for more information.



1. Open to SCBWI members and nonmembers.

2. Anyone under the age of 18 is not allowed at SCBWI events for liability reasons.

3. Caregivers or facilitators for physically impaired attendees are always welcome.


Current regular gatherings on the Calendar:

– Clark County, Vancouver, WA – monthly during the school year
– Coffee Hour, Portland – monthly
– Salem – monthly
– SW Portland – monthly

– Central Oregon – monthly during the school year


Check the calendar for specific dates and times or go to the events page.


Here’s how:

1. Get approval from Deb Bartsch, The Write Direction Coordinator, at

2. Choose a free location (a library, a community center, a cafe, etc.) and a date and time—one to two hours is a good length. Note: gatherings are free to members and nonmembers alike, so it’s a good way to introduce people to SCBWI.

3. Please fill out this form for publicity purposes. Include a contact email and/or phone number. It’ll go to the appropriate people for the website if there’s enough lead time, and for the next NewsWorthy (see deadlines, etc. here.) if you give us enough notice.

4. Share about The Write Direction meeting on our Twitter account, our Facebook page, or Portland Kidlit on Facebook, if appropriate. You may also announce it on Toad Hall, or other listserves where you can invite writers and illustrators.

5. If your meeting is location based, an email announcing it to people in that area can be sent. Ask Robin Chilstrom, our webmaster, at least a week before you want the announcement to go out. Contact her at Be sure to provide the text you want sent to potential attendees.

6. Report back to Deb on results and she’ll share in the newsletter. If you take pictures of your group’s meeting, those can go in the newsletter too.


Questions? Contact Deb Bartsch at