This weekend I attended the SCBWI Cape Town Spring conference (2011). It was such a treat! The roster of speakers dazzled the attendees: Steve Mooser (SCBWI president and founder), Erzsi Deàk (founder of Hen and Ink agency), Nicol Faasen, and Stephan Spies (publisher).
The afternoon consisted of crit groups moderated by prominent South African publishers: Michelle Cooper (Tafelberg), Sally Howes (Watermark), Carol Broomhall (Jacana), Aldré Lategan (Human and Rousseau), and Miemie du Plessis (Lapa).
The consistent theme throughout all the talks and critiques was how we all need persistence. It can be hard to trust the process of creating, but this conference definitely affirmed the need for bravery and persistence when facing blank paper. There is a story within you; cajole it out of hiding with songs and soft words, otherwise it may remain in the shadows forever. Don't give up!