First: To the lady, seated in the row in front of me who, just before David Small was going to speak - stood up and said "The next person is just an illustrator- so I'm gonna go."
You win the "Loser of the conference Award."
Second: Sometimes, in Thunder Dome... one's eyes drift over to see what action one's portfolio is getting. Mine eyes did just that. There stood a man, elegant, salt and pepper hair and beard.. smiling ear to ear. That made me happy. Then I realized it was author Bruce Coville - that made me spankin' happy. I'd love to have more authors show up to support the illustrators.
Mr. Coville wins the "Elegant Author with wonderful taste Award."
Kid Lit Drink Night happened across the street at the Century City Mall @ the inappropriately named , "Pink Taco". Really. I had to tell my husband , "We went out last night. I ate at the Pink Taco." - C'Mon!
Pink Taco, You win the ,"Only in L.A. Award"
At The Pink Taco, Agent Mary Kole was holding a 30 second "Pitch Slam". We watched the mele. We chatted with an Austrailian Illustrator named Leslie Vamos. I am 40- I am a Mom. I looked at this petite young, little (I can say that- I'm 5' 2"), talented , cute, spit fire of a fantastic drawer and immediately felt maternal. She signed up to do a pitch. She was about to get slammed and she was so confident. I couldn't be afraid to do something that this whipper snapper seemed perfectly cool doing - like it was as easy as ordering a non-fat, decaf - no whip, caramel macchiatto...
Leslie wins the "I'm the shit and I know it" Award
I had met Mary Kole a few weeks back in NYC @ the NJ SCBWI networking dinner. Here I was standing 3 feet away - wanting the chance to say, "Hi" - and with the aid of 2 Mojitos and Leslie's bravado, Jim Hill's and Diandre Mae's and Angela Matteson's quick help throwing together my idea.... I signed up and pitched a picture book story. I have never done this before. It was not a pleasant experience. 30 SECONDS GO! I rambled and all I heard was "WHY? WHY SHOULD I CARE? SOUNDS KINDA PREACHY! MAYBE WITH CUTE ART IT COULD WORK! YOU SHOULD TALK TO KELLY LIGHT! (I still don't get that last part- last time I checked, I was Kelly Light)
I was a deer in the headlights that were Mary Kole's eyeballs and she has eyebrows that are extremely expressive... expressing "I will squash you like a tiny illustrator bug".
But I was able to laugh at it- laugh at her and laugh at myself. Now, at least I've done it. Next time won't be so bad.
I win the "I grew a Ball" Award
I did. Illustrator ball number one.