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  • Ashley Adkins

Support Michigan Based Children’s Authors and Illustrators Within Your Community

We are nearing the end of September and it seems everyone is busy with the start of a new school year. As parents, grandparents, principals, teachers, community organizers, and all the adults in-between, we are looking for new ideas and inspiration to help get our children excited about learning. Luckily, we have many very talented children’s authors and illustrators in Michigan that can help!

As you may already know, Nick and I are both members of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and have been for many years. Throughout our time as members, we have had the opportunity to meet some amazing artists who reside right here in our own backyard.

Many schools and other groups host authors and illustrators for March is Reading month, which is a great experience for attendees! But why limit it to March? Community organizations, church groups, local libraries, and many others host events year round where authors and illustrators would make a great addition to their programming.

If budgets are a concern, inviting local-to-you talent can save on costs by drastically reducing travel and lodging expenses. Teaming up with neighboring schools or community groups to host the same guest and split speaker and travel fees can save a lot of money too.

Below you will find a link to a short list of some friends Nick and I have met during our time with SCBWI along with some details about each individual and their work – there are authors and illustrators who work on fiction and non-fiction titles. Note: this list is NOT a complete list of children’s authors and illustrators in Michigan, but it is a great start! Click here for more detailed information. To find more creators who are SCBWI members you can visit, click on “Showcases”, then choose “Speaker’s Bureau”. I then search by “Michigan” under the region and the list you get are those creators in Michigan that do speaking engagements – many have programs for adults and children. You can also click on “Illustrator Gallery” and search by “Michigan” to find illustrators in our state – also many who do speaking engagements.

Sharing this list with 2-3 people who host events where children’s lit authors and illustrators would be valuable would go a long way in supporting local artists, while enhancing our children’s educational experiences! I know I will be sending this off to our son’s teachers and their school librarians and I will then ask them to share with their network of friends.

Please feel free to reach out to me at any time with questions about this information. I likely have a way of getting in contact with the individuals on this list quickly and I know they would love to hear from you!

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