For scholars and published children’s writers: ICFA

One of my authors (Amie Rose Rotruck, who wrote Bronze Dragon Codex) is also the head of the ICFA children’s literature division. She’s looking for published YA and middle grade authors of speculative fiction who are interested in attending the conference next March. (whoops, originally that said June–not sure what I was thinking. It’s every March!)

Bronze Dragon Codex
Bronze Dragon Codex

More information about ICFA, from Amie’s blog:

In one sentence: IAFA is a scholarly organization dedicated to the study of the fantastic in the arts. Let’s break down those terms:

“Scholarly” refers to academic papers, most grad school level or above, although every once in a while there’s some good undergrad papers.

“Fantastic” refers to anything outside the realm of reality. This includes high fantasy, urban fantasy, horror, science fiction, science fantasy, and basically anything that doesn’t fall under realistic.

“Arts” refers to literature, film, graphic novels, picture books, fanfic, visual art.

Now for some some FAQs:

What do you do?
Currently I am head of the Children’s and Young Adult division. This means I receive and evaluate scholarly papers and determine which belong in the conference (and some other boring behind the scenes stuff). Deadline for papers is October 31; official CFP will be posted here later. I am NOT in charge of deciding which writers get compensation for attending and how much; I’m just looking for names to pass along at this point.

I don’t write papers, I write fiction. What can I contribute?
There are also author readings at the conference (usually one block of readings per session; there’s about 4-6 sessions per day). I’d love to get some new children’s and YA writer blood into those readings. In addition to readings, you can also do signings and book sales. A great chance to interact with people who have an academic interest in your genre (who knows, you may even get to meet someone who wrote a paper about your work; there’s a lot on recent books!).

What do I get for attending?
Compensation varies and is, I must warn you, competitive. Later this summer the person in charge of arranging visiting writers will be emailing out conference info and what you need to send to get compensation. If you’re interested, give me your name and contact info so I can pass it on to her.

Who else will be there?
This year the Guest of Honors are Lawrence Yep and Nalo Hopkinson. For an idea of other writers who’ve attended in the past, this past year’s program is available at (to find names quickly, just to a search on “Reading”)

Why should I come?

  • Hear papers on current issues in children’s literature such as “Twilight” or ancient issues relating to fairy tales, or anything in-between.
  • Talk with some amazing writers and scholars in a very friendly environment (I call this a “conference with training wheels” when encouraging grad students to attend).
  • It’s in Orlando in March, so if you live in a cold climate it’s a chance to warm up and maybe swing by Disneyworld.
  • It’s a networking opportunity; I met [info]slwhitman there and she ended up being the editor for my first book.
  • Because this is one of the most amazing, fun conferences in existence.

If you’re interested, contact her directly with the information she’s asking for.