Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Alaska Big Thaw Retreat ’19

Date(s) - 04/26/2019 - 04/28/2019
12:00 am

Susitna River Lodging
23094 S. Talkeetna Spur Rd. - Talkeetna, Alaska 99676

A one-of-a-kind boutique retreat for all writers:
Picture book, middle grade, young adult, plus adult.
And Illustrators, too

Come join 40 authors and illustrators at a river front lodge,
2 hours from Anchorage and 2 hours from Denali National Park
(in case you want to add on to your adventure).

Literary agent Fiona Kenshole of Transatlantic Agency
Will present 2 workshops, a Q&A, and offer manuscript reviews.
At this gorgeous and secluded location you will have plenty of time for quiet work.
Optional critique groups meet two to three times.
Both evenings we gather for fireside sharing of stories, poetry, recipes—anything goes really—
And delicious deserts to sweeten your dreams.

Our guest speaker, Ms. Kenshole of Transatlantic Agency represents all authors. Although her website at says she only represents children’s authors, she just sold a book to Abrams, and does have a number of adult clients, including graphic novel writers and mystery writers. Find out more about her here.

The workshops:

I Want My Hat Back, a workshop on plotting, pace and structure for picture books, using the book by the same name as the mentor text.

Perfect Plot Planning, for authors of middle grade, young adult, and adult works, is fun and interactive, and uses the structure of Pride and Prejudice to show how you can structure plots and sub-plots.

Illustrators: exact workshop in the works…3 hours on Sunday 11 am – 2 pm 

Retreat Details

FOOD: We’ve managed to keep the price very low, only $295! (early bird pricing) To do this, we will be having a potluck dinner on Friday. The cabins have kitchenettes for reheating food. Breakfasts on Saturday and Sunday will be simple but hearty. Lunch on Saturday will be a build-your-own sandwich and salad bar. Saturday you will be free to eat dinner in the fun and funky village of Talkeetna. We will gather both Friday and Saturday nights for open mic/story telling for potluck desserts.

LODGING: Susitna River Lodge has lodge suites and cabins. All attendees will have their own bed, of course, though accommodations will need to be shared. There are some private rooms within the cabins, which for an extra fee, can be reserved. Find out more about Susitna River Lodging here.

CRITIQUE GROUPS: If you’d like to be part of a critique group at the retreat, please click that option below, and also click the category of writing that you will be sharing so we can put you in the right group. Past participants have found these groups invaluable. Being away from home can be a great time to really dive deep; great things can happen!


Are you a member of SCBWI?

Did you know that SCBWI members always receive a discount on events?

Whether Regional events or the International Conference, all members receive a discount.

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Event Registration

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Ticket Information

Early Bird Non-Member - $299.00

Early Bird Member - $275.00

This price is only available for SCBWI members.

Sunday Illustrator Intensive Only - NON MEMBER - $75.00
3 Hour intensive with Fiona Kenshole of Transatlantic Agency

Sunday Illustrator Intensive Only - MEMBER - $50.00

This price is only available for SCBWI members.

3 Hour intensive with Fiona Kenshole of Transatlantic Agency

The SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy
To register for an SCBWI event, you are required to acknowledge our Anti-Harassment Policy.
Scroll to the bottom to read the policy.

You will then be able to click the checkbox indicating that you have read our policy.


The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) is dedicated to providing a safe and harassment-free environment for all of its members and will take any and all necessary steps to address and prevent harassment at events associated with SCBWI. Harassment under this policy may include verbal comments, written comments, displayed images, or behaviors such as intimidation, stalking, body policing, unwelcome photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, unwelcome sexual attention or advances, and bullying or coercion.


The SCBWI Member Anti-Harassment Policy applies to all situations of harassment or intimidation at any SCBWI Event. An “SCBWI Event” is any event, meeting or activity that is authorized by an SCBWI Regional Manager to be sponsored by, or affiliated with, SCBWI. SCBWI events may include, if properly authorized by an SCBWI Regional Manager, the Annual Summer Conference in Los Angeles, the Annual Winter Conference in New York, regional conferences, meetings and meet-ups. This SCBWI Member Anti-Harassment Policy also applies to “SCBWI On-Line Interactions,” which include communications and content posted on, or directed towards, SCBWI’s Social Media accounts or sent through any of the communication tools available on SCBWI’s website, SCBWI’s Social Media accounts under this policy include the official SCBWI accounts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and LinkedIn.



Code of Conduct

All participants in SCBWI Events and SCBWI On-Line Interactions, including faculty, staff, and attendees, are required to comply with the following anti-harassment code of conduct. The SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy prohibits harassment, including but not limited to the following behaviors:

  • intimidation, stalking, or following.
  • Sustained disruption of talks or other events.
  • Inappropriate physical contact.
  • Unwelcome sexual attention.
  • Abusive verbal comments.
  • Quid pro quo– sexual harassment that occurs when one in an authority position requests sex or a sexual relationship in exchange for professional consideration or favors.
  • Harassment does not include respectful disagreement or reasonable and respectful critique made in good faith. SCBWI continues to welcome and appreciate presentation of appropriate controversial ideas, free speech, and creative artistic expression. SCBWI encourages members to hold one another accountable to the Code of Conduct as stated in this part of the Policy and to take the perspectives of others seriously when a disagreement arises.


Reporting Procedures

Any person who believes there has been a violation of the SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy can report the offense in one or all of the following ways:

  • Certain SCBWI Events, including the Annual Summer Conference in Los Angeles and the Annual Winter Conference in New York, will designate one or more Safety Team Members who will be available during the conference to provide a safe space for members to report an incident. The Safety Team Member will report directly to the conference director or regional advisor in charge.
  • A complainant may submit a complaint under this policy to the Director of Community Marketing and Engagement, the Director of Illustration and Artist Programs and/or your Regional Manager.
  • SCBWI has a dedicated email address for reporting any potential incident of harassment under this policy. Anyone who chooses to report an incident can find the Anti-Harassment Report Form on the SCBWI website (About > Anti-Harassment) or use the following link: Reports should include the substance of the complaint, date, and whenever possible, a list of witnesses or a reference to the relevant URLs, if the offense occurred through an SCWBI On-Line Interaction.


SCBWI will investigate all complaints subject to the SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy. If the policy applies, SCBWI will investigate the matter and take whatever action is necessary and appropriate to prevent a recurrence and protect the environment at SCWBI Events. If a complaint is made anonymously, please note that SCBWI will not be able to follow up on an anonymous report with the complainant directly, as SCBWI will not have contact information for the anonymous complainant. Moreover, anonymous complaints may hinder SCBWI’s ability to investigate the complaint.  SCBWI will take steps to protect the confidentiality of the complaint, to the extent possible.  However, complete confidentiality may not be possible in all circumstances.  SCBWI will make every attempt to respond to a named complainant in a timely fashion.

If appropriate, SCBWI may report the incident to local authorities.



The SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy prohibits retaliation against a member of the SCBWI community for reporting harassment, intimidation or discrimination, or for participating in an investigation relating to any complaint made under this policy. The sanctions for retaliation are the same sanctions available to address any other violation of the SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy.



SCBWI takes all allegations of harassment seriously. Complaints will be investigated by SCWBI if they fall within the scope of SCWBI’s Anti-Harassment Policy. Depending on the results of the investigation, SCWBI will determine whether a sanction is appropriate.


Sanctions for faculty, speakers, staff or board members may include any of the following:


  • warning the party involved that the particular behavior is inappropriate and must be ceased;
  • immediate removal from a particular event;
  • denial of access to SCBWI spaces and venues on a temporary or permanent basis;
  • withholding of a contracted honorarium;
  • prohibition from future speaking engagements;
  • prohibition from future faculty appointments;
  • expulsion from SCBWI; and/or
  • removal from the Board of Advisors or Board of Directors, when appropriate.


Sanctions for attendees, members, and guests can include any of the following:

  • warning the party involved that specified behavior is inappropriate and must be ceased;
  • immediate removal from a particular event, without refund;
  • denial of access to SCBWI spaces and venues on a permanent or temporary basis;
  • termination of SCBWI membership, without refund; and/or
  • prohibition of future SCBWI membership.


If the conduct at issue involves one of SCBWI’s employees, SCBWI will handle utilize whatever corrective action is appropriate based on the result of the investigation and subject to SCBWI employment policies and practices.



SCBWI will make every reasonable effort to conduct all investigations into allegations of harassment, intimidation, or discrimination in a manner that will protect the confidentiality of all parties and witnesses. Notwithstanding the above, confidentiality is not absolute, and those with a legitimate business reason to know and be informed of the allegations will be so informed. Parties to the complaint should treat the matter under investigation with discretion and respect the reputation of all parties involved.



If you wish to file a complaint or an anonymous complaint, CLICK HERE to access the Anti-harassment Report Form.


If you have questions regarding this policy, you may send an email to Please include the words "anti-harassment policy" in the subject line.

I have read and accepted the SCBWI Anti-Harassment policy.