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Registration Opens for Nation’s Most Unique Writer’s Conference


New Brunswick, NJ – Registration is now open for the nation’s most unique writers conference. The 47th Annual Rutgers University Council on Children’s Literature One-On-One Plus Conference (RUCCL), which matches aspiring children’s authors and illustrators with mentors from the world of children’s publishing for an entire day, will be held on Saturday, Oct. 15, on the Rutgers University campus. Registration for the day, which includes a light breakfast and lunch, is $225. Applications must be postmarked by June 27, 2016 in order to be considered for acceptance.

Founded by non-fiction author Vivian Grey, and established with the support of Rutgers University President Mason Gross, to fill a void for children’s authors and illustrators seeking help with their craft, this unique conference offers the opportunity for aspiring authors and illustrators to work one on one with professionals who write, illustrate, edit, promote and publish books for young readers.

RUCCL encourages all serious aspiring authors and illustrators to apply. Diverse voices are especially welcome, whether one’s focus is on picture books, middle grade, or young adult, in both fiction and non-fiction. Every year the conference attracts applicants from throughout the United States. Due to size limitations, not all applicants can be included. For those not accepted, registration checks will be returned.

The highlight of this full day program is a forty-five minute, one-on-one session, where each attendee is matched with an industry professional for mentoring and to review their submission. In addition, this year’s conference will include a Keynote address from Ellen Oh, young adult author (The Prophecy Series, Harper Teen – 2013-2015) and co-founder and president of WeNeedDiverseBooks; a “Success Story” from author Sheela Chari (“Vanished”, Disney Hyperion – 2011); and a panel discussion focusing on “Tough Love: An Agent’s Role in Today’s Market,” moderated by Linda Epstein (agent and Council Member). Throughout the day attendees are encouraged to network with editors, agents, and published authors as well as to connect with other attendees.

The Rutgers University Council on Children’s Literature is comprised of Rutgers University faculty and dedicated industry professionals who volunteer their time to plan the event, review applications and obtain editors, agents and published authors to participate as mentors. From its inception, all council members have donated their time and expertise with the intent of encouraging new and promising voices in the children’s writing market.

Dedicated council members and alumni, including Laurie Halse Anderson, Margery Cuyler, Jim Murphy, Susan Campbell Bartoletti, Kay Winters, among others, have returned to share their stories and offer valuable insight and encouragement to those striving to create good books for young readers. The council has also worked with the Zimmerli Art Museum on the Rutgers University Campus to develop a collection of research manuscripts and illustrations. Donated by prize-winning authors and illustrators for young readers, this collection is comprised of work either created by New Jersey residents or that focuses on topics in New Jersey, and is open to all students interested in learning more about the craft of writing for children.

Council alumni and conference participants who have had recent publications include Bob Krech for “Rebound” (2012), Monica Carnesi for  “Little Lost Dog” (2012) and “Sleepover with Beatrice and Bear” (2014), Paul Acampora for “I Kill The Mockingbird” (2014), Brian Schatell for “Owl Boy” (2015), and Tara Lazar for “Monstore” (2013) and five additional books in 2015 including “Normal Norman”, “Little Red Gliding Hood” and “I Thought This Was A Bear Book.”

Two scholarships are available each year to promising authors and illustrators who are financially unable to attend the conference otherwise.  Scholarship applications must be postmarked no later than June 1, 2016.

Aspiring children’s book authors and illustrators can download an application and find full program information and scholarship details at www.ruccl.org.


Contact: Denise Lang-Grant

(908) 625-1789

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