Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

FAQs 2020





I have a question about the conference – who do I ask?

Feel free to email our conference co-chairs Georgina Lippiett, Tracy Liennard & Sally Purdie at We’re more than happy to help.

Once attending the conference, Volunteers wear badges.

They are friendly and will sort any issues. Whatsoever!


How do I travel to Winchester?

Winchester is accessible by rail or road. (If coming from farther afield Southampton is the nearest airport, Heathrow is also more than doable) Maps and directions can be found on our How To Get There guide.


How can I book the conference?

To book the conference click on our ‘Book Conference Here’ link anywhere on this page. If you are an SCBWI member log in first to receive the members’ discounted rate.  



Book Conference Here 



If you are not a member,  consider joining for the discount.

We also offer discounts to Society of Authors and Association of Illustrators members – please contact them for our voucher code.


When do I need to book my place by?

Bookings remain open till midnight, 18th October 2019.

Here are the reasons to book early:

Late bookings make it difficult to find accommodation in Winchester.

Places can be few,  sessions limited. Booking early means your first choice is guaranteed.

1-1 professional reviews run out! Booking early gives you a 1-1 portfolio or manuscript review with a industry professional editor an agent.


What deadlines should I be aware of?

Scholarship applications: submissions until midnight, Saturday 03rd August 2019

Manuscript (one to one reviews) deadline for booking runs from open of conference bookings to ~ 07th September 2019

and for receipt of MS for review is ~ 14th September 2019

Portfolio (one to one reviews) deadline for booking runs from opening of conference bookings to ~ 07th October 2019

and for receipt of portfolios for one-to-ones is ~ 14th October 2019

The Hook: deadline for entries ~ 15th September 2019

First Pages & First Impressions: deadline for entries ~ 15th September 2019

For submitting to Self-Editing for Picture Books is ~ 30th September 2019

Friday Night Critique: manuscripts/extracts to be submitted by 18th October 2019

Artwork one to one reviews: book by 18th October 2019

Conference booking deadline: midnight, 18th October 2019

Ideas for Future Conferences?

I’ve got an idea for next year’s conference, who do I pitch it to? All suggestions and ideas welcome! 

Please drop co-chairs Georgina Lippiett, Tracy Liennard & Sally Purdie an e-mail at


Breakout Sessions and Pulse/Spark


What are Breakout Sessions?

Breakouts are when the audience splits up to attend professional events that happen concurrently. You can choose your preferred sessions on the booking form. Sessions will be for Writers, Illustrators, Newbies and Pulse. Yeah, we know it’s really hard to choose.


What is the PULSE/SPARK track of the conference?

The PULSE track of SCBWI-BI focus on the needs of our growing numbers of published authors and illustrators. While the SPARK track focuses on the unique needs of our members who publish independently. Once published, however, their need is the same: how to get their books into the hands of readers. This year the two tracks team up. We have a conference session dedicated to exploring what makes a fantastic library author visit and how to connect with librarians and your library readers with two award winning librarians in the know. We have a motivating talk on career longevity as a mid list author and how relationships with editors can play an important role. Sunday’s sessions will be practical and hands on. Learn to make a book trailer, engage more on social media, try Scrivener or explore online publishing platforms and more! The PULSE and SPARK track wants to help you achieve your goals as working author or illustrator.’


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How much does the conference cost?

It depends on whether you are a member of SCBWI or not, and what extras you want to sign up for. But the basic rates are the following:

SCBWI Member £235

Not a Member £265


Any discounts?

SCWBI volunteers, of course. Also the Society of Authors and the Association of Illustrators get a special rate. Please contact those organisations for your discount code.



Book Conference Here


Any additional costs to budget for?

You must organise your own accommodation and transportation. Lunch and coffee breaks are part of the conference fee as well as the finger foods at the party on Saturday night. The booking form will enable you to tailor what you opt into. The following are additional costs which are not included in the conference fee:

Friday Night Critique – £7

Optional Friday Night Dinner at the University – £19.00 for 2 courses

1-1 Portfolio or Manuscript Review – £30 for members / £35 for non-members

Party (MBL) for Non conference goers/ plus ones – £17.00


I’ve booked a place but can no longer attend. Can I get a refund?

We are very sorry you can no longer attend. Unfortunately, you must understand, the conference is carefully budgeted and planned ahead of time. We are unable to offer refunds, we are a charity organisation.

Please contact if you have any queries.


Do SCBWI volunteers get paid?

No! The SCBWI volunteers who deliver conferences and other events do not get paid. There are perks; the conference team for example attend the conference that they organised over a whole year for free, hurrah! Network heads and various volunteers get discounts. But mainly we volunteer because we like what we do and we like being around people who love children’s books, like we do. Oh, and we do get really, really close to the editors and agents.



Where can I stay?

There are plenty of places to stay in Winchester, depending on your budget. Winchester is a small town,  if you book near the station or the university, you should be able to get to all the events on foot.

Top tip: the committee and some of the speakers will be staying at the Winchester Royal Hotel, where the bar is being kept open until late (but payments after 11pm have to be charged to room accounts, so if you’re not staying you’ll have to team up with a resident and pay them back for the drinks!). The Visit Winchester website can be useful if you aren’t familiar with the town. Or try Airbnb you can book a house and gather your friends to split the costs while sharing the adventure.



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What are the Outstanding Contribution Awards?

The Outstanding Contribution Awards will be announced on Sunday morning. SCBWI British Isles is built with the hard work, enthusiasm and energy of our volunteers. As a way of recognising individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to our region we started the SCBWI British Isles Outstanding Contribution Award (OCA) in 2010. Read about it and winners of previous years.


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Can I sell my book at the conference?

Yes! Both published and self-published authors and illustrators, attending the conference, can nominate one title on the booking form for the bookseller to stock. Our bookseller P&G Wells will endeavour to stock these alongside a number of titles nominated by our conference speakers and faculty. Please be aware however, that this will be subject to availability and we cannot guarantee all titles will be available. We would request that nominated books should have a clear connection to children’s literature, even if they are not aimed at young people.



 Register One Title for sale at the conference


Can I bring my own stock to sell?

There has occasionally been difficulty with stocking some titles. If you think this may apply to you, and you are able to do so, you may wish to bring up to six copies of your own book. If you present them to our bookseller – P&G Wells – at their stand at the conference, they will sell the titles for you if they have not been able to source copies of their own. They will then settle up after the conference. We politely request that you please do not sell copies other than through our bookseller.

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Our main sponsors are:


Society of Authors Main Sponsor: Golden Egg

SCBWI would like to thank the sponsors for their support. SCBWI is a non-profit organization
and does not endorse any products or services provided by external companies.


Illustrations © Mini Grey 2019