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writing and illustrating Children's Books, the society and its members and activities as well as links to websites and blogs about Children's Books

DECEMBER 2006 – No.5 - Electronic Newsletter of the SCBWI SA


The Electronic Newsletter of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, South Africa
DECEMBER 2006 – No.5


  • End of Year
  • Mentorship Plans
  • Events planned for 2007
  • Writer’s & Illustrator’s Market & News
  • Interesting Books
  • Committee Members


A small group of writers and illustrators met for the end of year get together. We were pleased to have a guest from Colorado USA – Carol Reinsma – who shared information about her work and the SCBWI in her area.
For those that missed the get together, warm wishes from all for the festive season and the very best for the coming new year.
In 2007 SCBWI will be launching a Mentorship Program. This is an opportunity for a writer/illustrator to work with an established writer/illustrator who will help them develop their writing or illustrating.
In March 2007 South African Writers and illustrators can apply for the SCBWI SA Mentorship programme. The winners will be chosen by panel of 4 judges and will be announced during the Cape Town Book Fair (June).
The winners of the competition will not necessarily be the “best” submission, but the one the judges feel would benefit the most from a mentorship program. The winners will team up with the mentors according to geographical area. For the next 6 months the winners will work with an established writer or Illustrator, seeing them for a session every month. The mentor will spend an average of an hour or two a month for the six months working with one of the winners. During this time, the mentor may critique manuscripts or illustrations go with the winner to visit local events of interest to writers or illustrators, and work on writing or illustrating exercises, or participate in whatever the mentor thinks is the best use of the time.
The Information about how to apply and who the mentors will be, will be available early in 2007


Event: Publisher's Show-and-Tell Day
Region: Cape Town, South Africa.
Description of event: This is a day for writers and illustrates to pitch their work to the publishers. A day when writers can come to talk about planned projects and illustrators can show their portfolios. It provides an opportu­nity for publishers to see what work our writers and illustrators have done during the past year and also for them to meet new writers and illustrators.
Event: A Presentation by Piet Grobler
Region: Cape Town, South Africa.
Description of event: Piet Grobler (international award-winning illustrator from Stellenbosch) will take a selection of his published books and explain in some detail his methods, techniques and the process he followed to conceive and create each of them.
The Cape Town International Book Fair will occur for the second time on the 16 to 19 June 2007.
SCBWI SA is again liaising with the organizers to look at how we can be a part of the fair. Our aim is to facilitate means that South African writers and illustrators can make contact with the representatives from the international and local publishers coming to the Fair. (More detail will be available early in 2007) SCBWI will be staging an exhibition of original South African children’s book illustrations to run concurrently with the book fair.

SCBWI SA – Gauteng area – Sheduled Events for the first half of 2007
Jenny Hatton – Has taken over from Thomas van der Walt as Assistant Regional Advisor, representing the northern part of South Africa and the Gauteng Area. Jenny is a writer and an educational advisor. If you have any inquires or suggestions for events held in Gauteng area please contact Jenny via e-mail - or telephone +27 (0)11 486 1848 (during office hours)
Event: A Presentation by Joan Rankin
Region: Gautang, South Africa.
Date, time, venue & cost : TBC For more info e-mail Jenny -
Description: Introduction of Gauteng’s new SCBWI assistant advisor and her plans for 2007
Children’s book editors from Publishers based in Gauteng introduce themselves and shortly explain how their submission procedure works.
The main speaker – Joan Rankin. (international award-winning writer and illustrator from Johannesburg) Her talk will take the form of a presentation – she will take a selection of her published books and explained and showed in some detail the process she followed to conceive and create each of them explaining her methods and techniques.
After lunch Joan will be willing to look at illustrators work and critique their work. Miemie du Plessis, Editor at LAPA Publishers, will assist Joan in the critique session.

Writer’s and Illustrator’s Market and News

Reviva Schermbrucker is a children’s author, illustrator and educational materials developer with over 50 published titles ranging from picture books e.g. “The African Christmas Cloth” ( illustrated by her with embroideries) to a teenage novel, “Lucky Fish. She has run a number of classes with adults on writing for children at universities, colleges and NGO workshops as well as mentored budding writers and illustrators.
Reviva offers workshops which get the creative juices flowing and individual sessions to cater for your particular needs.
The workshops consist of five consecutive weekday mornings from 9am to 1pm and cost R650.
The first workshop of the new year runs from the 8th to the 12th January in Claremont, CT.
Individual sessions cost R200 an hour.
Phone Reviva Schermbrucker 021 6716785

Contact Marianne Brandt
Or Tel: (021) 9496616

It can be a solitary working lifestyle! So link up with this new network and share info, inspiration and fun at informal get-togethers.
Please contact Deni Brown (021) 788 1287 or

Call for submissions of articles for a special issue of The Lion and the Unicorn (April 2008)
Children’s Literature in South Africa. South Africa is a multilingual and multicultural society in which its people are increasingly taking pride in the development of their own languages and cultural inheritance. Children’s literature, and those involved with it, play an important role in creating positive changes in society. By sharing problems, challenges, solutions and successes with each other over a number of years now, a healthy discourse between role players working in the field is starting to develop, which holds the promise of many co-operative possibilities which could potentially yield a wealth of literary dividends. These endeavours are also supported by government policy.
Submissions are being solicited for a special issue on Children’s Literature in South Africa, to be published in The Lion and the Unicorn in April 2008.
Possible topics include issues related to: the production (oral storytellers, writers, illustrators, translators, publishers), marketing and distribution (publishers, agents, book suppliers), mediation (teachers/facilitators, parents, librarians, the media - newspapers, radio, television) and reception (by toddlers, children and teenagers as listeners to, or readers of, stories, poetry, stage productions and film).
All topics regarding South African children’s literature are welcome. Deadline: 30 July 2007
Please send enquiries to: Tel: 018 2991491 Fax: 018 2991562

I'd like to pilot a children's magazine for 3-7 year olds in Cape Town. The magazine would be an interactive free magazine that includes colourfully illustrated stories and activities. The main focus of the magazine would be fun, enjoyment of doing new things, imagination, encouraging ideas, reading/ identifying words and discovering how things work and why things are the way they are. Examples of activities are answering 'why' or 'how' questions with illustrations and text, learning to follow instructions in recipes, finding shapes and colours, learning about seasons by making collages from leaves.
At the moment this is just an idea. I worked on a children's magazine, called Okido, in London over the last few months. Their first edition will be out in January. I plan on doing something similar to Okido and therefore will have an example of roughly what I want to do in a few weeks time. Right now I'm just looking for advice, illustrators, storytellers, ideas about how to fund, print, distribute the magazine or just any suggestions about whether you think it'd work or not, especially if you have children in that age group, or spend time with children of that age group or are working in children's books. I am also looking for people to brainstorm this idea with me.
Kindest, warmest regards
Ps: I am interested in being involved in the children's stories world and want to meet people doing inspired projects in Cape Town* storytelling, art workshops, activities, etc... I would love to get involved with existing children's projects in Cape Town and get to know people who are already doing things I could learn from. If you know of any projects that need assistants please let me know.

The Pros on Adobe Photoshop
This book inspires readers to explore the creative process and technical skill behind the work of leading contemporary digital artists. Highlighting skillful digital designers, Best Practice features interviews with the artists and deconstructs individual pieces of their work into how-to steps that readers can experiment with. Full of industry advice and hot techniques, this richly visual four-color book reinforces the key design and illustration principles that every designer needs to know. Best Practice includes an initial review chapter to bring readers up to speed with Photoshop fundamentals to ensure their success with the chapters that follow.

CONGRATULATIONS TO LeAnn Hardy on the publication of her book

Committee members SCBWI South Africa
Marjorie van Heerden – Co-Regional Advisor
Paddy Bouma – Co-Regional Advisor
Samantha van Riet – Bookings and e-mailing.
Wendy Hartmann – Committee member -
Jenny Hatton –
Last but not the least, the SCBWI web site.
The Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators
Contact Information: SCBWI Executive Office - Stephen Mooser, President.
Lin Oliver, Executive Director
8271 Beverly Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90048
Phone: (323)782-1010, Fax: (323)782-1892 email:

PLEASE publishers/Authors/Illustrators, send any information you would like us to include in the next newsletter. Is there a writing competition? Have you written an article on children’s books or related subject? Would you like it circulated through our newsletter? Please let us know.
Send to: please type NEWS in the subject line

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