On Saturday I had the pleasure of going to the Minnesota SCBWI conference. Jay Asher was one of the presenters. He talked about his journey to publications which was really great to hear because it took him 12 years to get published. So even though I some days I think I should just forget about this whole writing thing and use my free time to wait tables this presentation made me realize that the road to a published book can be long but I should stick with it.
Susan Marie Swanson, who wrote The House in the Nightwas the other presenter. She talked about how writers can use metaphors to encourage themselves. She showed examples of poetry from kids she taught. It was inspiring to see how these kids expressed themselves. Her presentation was beautiful, poetic and inspiring.
After the conference I got in my car and drove to Iowa to watch my mom and the Leader Dog she is training participate in Puppy Days. The puppy raisers and dogs did a series of drills. There were even dogs in costumes. I got to meet people and hear stories of people who raise the dogs as well as people who use the dogs. It is a lot to think about as a continue working on my picture book manuscript about a guide dog.
At the end of the presentation I got to hold one of the new puppies that will be trained by the prisoners.