Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators


Southern Breeze logo

liz conrad logo                                  sb writers award logo.02

 Liz Conrad Illustrator Award                                      Writing Contest


The Southern Breeze Region of SCBWI offers our regional members the opportunity to have their work viewed and read by top professionals in the industry. Entry is FREE, and feedback is provided to as many entries as possible.

liz conrad logo   Liz Conrad Illustrator Award

In honor of our dear friend, the Southern Breeze chapter of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators has established a merit based Award for our regional illustrators. This award is now the only contest offered to our illustrators as we have moved to a single regional conference each year.

The Liz Conrad Award will be given to one promising illustrator in the children’s book field and will provide:

  • Free attendance at our Illustrator’s Day / Illustrator’s Intensive.
  • Free attendance at our annual Conference.

This Award is open to Southern Breeze SCBWI members only and is an impressive honor to add to one’s resume. If you would like to apply, email your application and submission to Applications may be submitted beginning November 15th of each year. The deadline for submissions is January 1st.


Download the Application

PROFESSIONAL JUDGE 2018 Liz Conrad Award

Claire Easton of Painted Words
will be the judge for the Liz Conrad Award for wik’18 and Illustrators Day ’17, and will participate in the Quickfire Portfolio review on Illustrators’ Day. She will also be available for private portfolio reviews.



2017 –

Jason Bradley Rollins



2016 –

narges jafari

Narges Jafari

Narges-Jafari_A-rainy-story-300x172    Narges-Jafari_Metro-Monster-300x168    Narges-Jafari_The-little-Ben-300x168


sb writers award logo.02  2017 Southern Breeze Writing Contest



Judged by Karen Grencik from Red Fox Literary


Speed and Spring: The Story of Forrest Grady (Spec) Towns by Sherri Rivers


2nd place: Bug-Truck Buddies by Heather Montgomery

3rd place: Little Bad Blue by Diane Anton Sherrouse



Judged by John Cusick from Folio Literary/Folio Jr.


The Prickle Pod Tree by Glenda Slater


2nd Place: The Wildness of Mellie Feye by Candice Conner

3rd Place: Canada or Bust by Colleen Bennett



Judged by Kelly Van Sant from D4EO Literary


Last Year at Little Bend High by Joan Broerman


2nd place: Address Unknown by Re Marzullo

3rd place: The Crooked Truth by Kristine Anderson


Submissions for the Writing Contest are open each June.



Why Enter?

Each manuscript receives scoring sheet feedback from two published authors. The top 15 manuscripts in each category also receive feedback from an editor or agent.

1st Place Winner – Receives FREE tuition to the next year’s Southern Breeze Conference.

1st, 2nd & 3rd Place Winners– Receives acknowledgement in the Southern Breeze News, Web Site, Blog, Facebook Page and Twitter.

Judges reserve the right to withhold prizes in any category with insufficient entries or scores.


Illustrated Texts (IT)
Fictional & Nonfiction Picture Books, Early Readers, Leveled Readers and Illustrated Chapter Books. Send complete picture book manuscripts and up to 10 pages of longer works, maximum of 2000 words (no art)

Middle Grade Novels (MG)
Send up to 10 pages (no art). Novels in verse; send complete poems – up to 10 pages, maximum word count: 2500 words. You may include a synopsis, but it will count as part of the 10 pages.

Young Adult Novels (YA)
Send up to 10 pages (no art). Novels in verse; send complete poems – up to 10 pages, maximum word count: 2500 words. You may include a synopsis, but it will count as part of the 10 pages.



This year, each entry will receive two judging sheets from anonymous PAL members (each PAL judge is an expert in his or her category but we have chosen to keep them anonymous just as your entries are anonymous to them). Then, the PAL judges will decide which entries in each category are among the best 15, and those 15 will be sent to our professional judges. The pro judges will provide judging sheets with ratings and feedback for the manuscripts they receive, and will determine which receive first, second and third place, plus any honorable mentions.

Illustrated Books 

(Fiction & Nonfiction)

Karen Grencik, Red Fox Literary Agency

Karen Grencik became a literary agent because of a man she admired. She wanted the world to know his story, so she set out to make that happen. Within a year she’d accomplished her goal. Double Luck, Memoirs of a Chinese Orphan, written by Lu Chi Fa with Becky White, was published by Holiday House in 2001.

Over the next few years, Karen signed new clients and sold award-winning titles. Among the awards garnered by her authors are the Parents’ Choice Gold Award for Best Non-Fiction, the SCBWI Golden Kite Award for Best Picture Book Text, and the Benjamin Franklin Award for Best New Fiction.

In June 2011 Karen joined forces with Abigail Samoun to open Red Fox Literary. She has been ranked by Publishers Marketplace as one of the Top 10 agents for children’s book sales in both 2012 and 2013.

Middle Grade Novels

JMC new author photo

John Cusick, Folio Literary/Folio Jr.

John represents a diverse list of iconoclastic voices in young adult, middle-grade, picture books, and everything in between. An author himself, he brings both a creative and commercial sensibility to his agenting style. He’s an editorial agent who works closely with his clients, whether it’s developing a debut project or helping a seasoned author achieve that breakout novel. His goal is always to match authors with their dream editor, to secure the best deals possible, and grow an author’s readership over a long career.

What he’s looking for: books kids will sneak / steal / borrow in secret; those personal, dangerous, life-saving stories; boundary pushers with a pitch that makes (certain) people say, “You can’t write a YA / MG about THAT!!”; beautiful, character-driven YA and MG that connects like an emotional gut-punch; the strange, iconoclastic, and unusual.

He’s drawn to contemporary realistic stories with strong hooks, as well as fresh fantasy set in our world and others and loves stories told in alternate formats (letters, texts…sticky notes?). He loves funny, quirky, and spooky, with proactive protagonists, kids and teens chasing a dream or a hero who swings in with a song in her heart and a knife in her teeth.

WHAT HE’S NOT LOOKING FOR: Novels with talking animals, sports stories, and poetry.

Young Adult Novels








Jacquelyn Mitchard

Editor, Merit Press, an imprint of Adams Media/Simon & Schuster

New York Times bestselling author Jacquelyn Mitchard has written many novels for adults, including Two If by Sea. She has also written young adult novels; children’s books; a memoir, Mother Less Child;and a collection of essays, The Rest of UsDispatches from the Mother Ship. Her first novel, The Deep End of the Ocean, was the inaugural selection of the Oprah Winfrey Book Club, later adapted for a feature film starring and produced by Michelle Pfeiffer. Mitchard is the editor in chief and co-creator of Merit Press and a professor of fiction and creative nonfiction at Vermont College of Fine Arts in Montpelier. She lives on Cape Cod with her husband and their nine children. Merit Press publishes realistic YA fiction.






Writing Contest Coordinator
Debbie Daurelio



Entries Due
Between June 1 – June 30 (midnight) 

Open To
Current SCBWI members in the Southern Breeze Region and those who attended the previous WIK or Springmingle Conference

Eligible to Win 
Only unpublished and un-contracted work

Winners Announced     
November, 2017


General guidelines:
Polish and submit only your very best work. It will have stiff competition.  Every submission should have been revised, critiqued, and fine-tuned as much as possible.

What to enter:
Each writer may submit one manuscript excerpt in one category.

Submissions are a maximum of 10 pages. 
In those 10 pages, you’re allowed a maximum of 2000 words for Illustrated Texts and 2500 words for Middle Grade and Young Adult novels. Also included within those 10 pages is your synopsis, if you choose to include one.

Format your submission:

·       Word.doc or docx files only

·       12-point font (Times New Roman, Arial, or Courier only)

·       Double space the manuscript itself, single space for a synopsis or verse

·       Set one-inch margins (sides and bottom)

·       Take your name, email, address, phone number, etc., off the document

·       Add a header with the name of the manuscript and page number

Manuscript first page:

·       In the upper right corner note the contest category and the word count of the completed, whole manuscript (i.e., MG: 35,000 words)

·       Start the text at least three inches from the top of page 1

Send your submission

ü  Submissions are sent via email to

ü  The subject line of the email should read: CATEGORY_ TITLE OF MANUSCRIPT

ü  Your attached submission should be named as follows



ü  Body of your email

o   Title of your manuscript

o   Your name, any pen name

o   Your email address

o   Your phone number

ü  Submissions must be received before midnight Eastern time June 30.

Frequently Asked Questions

Entries are not required to be exclusive submissions, however, entries are required to be original, unpublished, and un-contracted manuscripts. Should an entry become acquired by a publishing house after contest opens for submissions, and before contest winners are announced, that submission becomes disqualified. This allows another deserving Breezer a chance for recognition. After all, receiving a contract typically trumps winning a contest!

(New!) Previous Year’s First Place Winners
If your manuscript won first place in a category in 2016, you may not submit an entry into that same category (a one-year break). However, you may enter a submission into a different writing category.

Co-Authored Manuscripts
All authors must submit a signed statement confirming that the manuscript has been submitted with their knowledge and permission. Only one prize is awarded for each winning entry, and the cover sheet should identify the individual who will be accepting the prize should the entry be named a winner. Both authors must be current Southern Breezers or have attended WIK or SM in the previous 12 months.

Participants will be notified of the winners by email and judging sheets will be emailed to all participants with the notification.

What to Do Afterwards?
After you receive your contest scoring sheets, consider the judges’ suggestions, go through the revising process again, and submit your fine-tuned work to appropriate publishing houses or agents.

Entering Both Illustration and Writing Contests?

Each member may submit one manuscript to the Writing Contest and one piece of art to the Illustration Contest at the same time — our writing and illustrating contests are two separate contests. (Do not send dummies, illustrations or photos to the Writing Contest, nor manuscripts or dummies to the Illustration Contest.) 


We enthusiastically celebrate the success of our contest and award winners. Some of the winning submissions have risen to contracts, and become published books. Of course our highest desire is for it to be difficult to tell who the true winners are…the authors and illustrators, or the children. We’re blessed with a region full of talented members anxious to cultivate their craft, and hope these opportunities nurture and strengthen their resolve to continue improving and sending out their work.