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Date & Time

Saturday, November 9, 2019
6:00 PM


57th Street Books


Free and open to the public

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Seminary Co-op Bookstore
(773) 752-4381


Join SCBWI-Illinois' Hyde Park/South Side Chicago Network for an evening of all things middle-grade! We'll feature a panel discussion about writing for middle-grade readers with SIX Chicago authors who have new middle-grade novels:

Kate Hannigan -"Cape"
Carolyn Crimi - "Weird Little Robots"
Keir Graff - "The Phantom Tower"
Liesl Shurtliff - "The Obsidian Compass"
Shirin Shamsi - "Laila and the Sands of Time"
Lisa Jenn Bigelow - "Hazel's Theory of Evolution"

Come for discussion about how to approach series, whether plotting or "pantsing" works, getting words onto a page, promoting books, connecting with agents, and connecting with editors and kids and classrooms. Along with so much more!

About Lisa Jenn Bigelow: Lisa Jenn Bigelow is the critically acclaimed author of the middle grade novels "Drum Roll, Please" and "Hazel’s Theory of Evolution," and the young adult novel "Starting from Here," which was named a Rainbow List Top Ten book by the American Library Association. A born-and-bred Midwesterner, she serves as a youth librarian in the Chicago suburbs during her non-writing hours.

About Kate Hannigan: Hyde Park children's author Kate Hannigan writes fiction and nonfiction for young readers. Her latest novel, "Cape," is the first of a three-book series with Simon & Schuster/Aladdin and blends graphic novel elements with historical fantasy. Kate's picture book biography, "A Lady Has the Floor," received four starred reviews, was named a Junior Library Guild Selection.

About Liesl Shurtliff: Liesl Shurtliff grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah the fifth of eight children. Her seven siblings tortured her but she really likes them now. Today she lives with her husband and four children in Chicago, which is a wonderful city except that it is decidedly flat and very cold in the winter.

About Shirin Shamsi: Shirin was born and raised in the UK, and now makes her home in the Chicago suburbs. "Laila and the Sands of Time" is her debut middle-grade novel. When she is not writing, Shirin enjoys reading, oil painting, and spending time with family.

About Keir Graff: Keir Graff is the author of funny and fantastical middle-grade adventure novels including "The Phantom Tower" (named a Best Children’s Book of 2018 by the Chicago Tribune) and "The Matchstick Castle" (an official Illinois Reads 2018 selection). A longtime resident of Chicago, he lives near the shore of Lake Michigan with his wife Marya and sons Felix and Cosmo.

About Carolyn Crimi: Carolyn Crimi enjoys snacking, pugs, Halloween, and writing, although not necessarily in that order. Over the years she has published 15 funny books for children, including "Don’t Need Friends," "Henry and the Buccaneer Bunnies," "Where’s My Mummy?," "There Might Be Lobsters," and "I Am The Boss of This Chair."