Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

2020 Twitter Chat Schedule

Please join us each month for our Twitter chat sessions with industry professionals lead by our Social Media Coordinator, Valerie Lawson.


Watch our calendar for upcoming chats at No matter the date, each Twitter chat session will last one hour, from 7-8 PM CST, and we will be using the hashtag #okscbwichat. Email questions to: Valerie Lawson


JANUARY 28th  – Traci Sorell – Children’s Author

Traci Sorell grew up immersed in stories. The ones her mother told at bedtime and the accounts of her ancestors’ lives mirrored her Cherokee heritage. Books she brought home from the library and selected during her school’s annual Reading is Fundamental (RIF) Day showed a world beyond her life in rural northeastern Oklahoma.

As an adult, Traci has lived in four U.S. time zones and abroad in Madrid, Spain. Her early writing reflected the Native American history, law, and policy focus of her educational and professional background.

Now she lives back inside the Cherokee Nation with her family. She started writing for young people when she wanted more contemporary fiction and nonfiction children’s books featuring Native Americans to share with her son. Traci’s first nonfiction picture book, WE ARE GRATEFUL: OTSALIHELIGA (Charlesbridge, 2018), features the universal spirit of gratitude as experienced through modern Cherokee culture across the four seasons. Her other works include: AT THE MOUNTAIN’S BASE (Kokila, 2019), INDIAN NO MORE with Charlene Willing McManis (Tu Books, 2019), and POWWOW DAY (Charlesbridge, 2020).

Traci’s debut picture book WE ARE GRATEFUL: Otsaliheliga, was awarded the 2019 Sibert Medal Honor Award, the 2019 Orbis Pictus Honor Award, the 2019 Boston Globe Horn Book Honor Award, and was an Oklahoma Book Award Finalist.

Learn more about Traci by visiting her website:

Her Twitter handle is @tracisorell

Recap the Twitter Chat with Traci Sorell here:


FEBRUARY 25thMegan Beatie – Book Publicist with Megan Beatie Communications – SCBWI OK Spring Conference Speaker

Megan Beatie is a veteran book publicist with more than two decades of experience. She has designed and executed publicity campaigns for a wide range of books, including literary and commercial fiction, mysteries & thrillers, science fiction, fantasy, and graphic novels, as well as nonfiction covering the topics of pop culture, film, entertainment, health, lifestyle, parenting, and relationships.

Some of the esteemed writers she has represented over the course of her career include Marcia Clark, Nicholas Meyer, Maria Goodavage, Dr. Nina Shapiro, John Lahr, Barry Eisler, Lee Goldberg, Leslie S. Klinger, Aimee Liu, Tembi Locke, and Attica Locke, among others.  She has a specialty in children’s book publicity and has worked on picture books, middle grade books and young adult books by authors including Becky Albertalli, Adam Silvera, Ibi Zoboi, Elana K. Arnold, Maureen Johnson, Melissa de la Cruz, Amber Smith, and Alexandra Monir.

The fifth generation of a farming family from Southern California’s Ventura County, Megan lives and works in Los Angeles.

Learn more about Megan by visiting her website here:

Her Twitter handle is @mbeatie

Recap the Twitter Chat with Megan Beatie here:


MARCH 3rd  – Amy Brewer – Literary Agent with Metamorphosis Literary Agency – SCBWI OK Spring Conference Speaker

Amy Brewer is a Senior Literary Agent with the Metamorphosis Literary Agency based in Oklahoma City. Amy wears many hats everyday, from literary agent to co-author of the Texting Prince Charming series to social media manager to yoga teacher. She graduated from Culver-Stockton College with a theater degree because drama, romance, and angst are lifelong passions. Her intuitive human understanding can help other writers bridge the communication gap and jump into the publishing world. For the last few years, she has been learning all she can about social media optimization and platform building in the publishing industry. Amy’s experience in the mental health field and yoga training help her guide and assist clients with stress and anxiety in this highly competitive industry. She pulls all of this together with a multi-tasking, hyper-organized brain, so that at the end of every day, she feels accomplished and grateful.

She is seeking captivating stories of human experience and books that touch her heart.

Learn more about what Amy is specifically looking for by visiting her manuscript wish list here:

Her Twitter handle is @42amer

Recap the Twitter Chat with Amy Brewer here:


MARCH 24thStephanie Stein – Editor with HarperCollins Children’s Books – SCBWI OK Spring Conference Speaker

Stephanie Stein is an Editor at HarperCollins Children’s Books, where she acquires middle grade and YA fiction for the Harper and HarperTeen imprints. In her eight years at Harper, she has worked with authors including Anna Bright, Rena Barron, Misa Sugiura, Rin Chupeco, Kiera Cass, Cynthia Hand, and Temre Beltz. She also edits the #1 bestselling Warriors series by Erin Hunter.

Stephanie is always looking for genre-savvy fiction with a fresh premise, a clever sense of humor, or an irresistibly immersive world, and loves books that break your heart–and then put it back together again.

You can learn more about what Stephanie is specifically looking for by visiting her manuscript wishlist here:

Her Twitter handle is @stephlystein

Recap the Twitter Chat with Stephanie Stein here:


APRIL 28th Barbara Lowell – Picture Book Author

Barbara Lowell is the author of nonfiction and historical fiction picture books, nonfiction early readers, and nonfiction educational market books. Her books include GEORGE FARRIS WHAT A WHEEL, DARING AMELIA, ALEXANDER HAMILTON AMERICAN HERO, and more books for children.

Her latest release, SPARKY & SPIKE: CHARLES SCHULZ AND THE WILDEST, SMARTEST DOG EVER, is a Junior Guild Library Selection.

Upcoming releases include MY MASTADON (February 25, 2020) and MIEP GIES, ANNE FRANK, AND THE HIDING PLACE (Spring 2021).

Learn more about Barbara by visiting her website:

Her Twitter handle is @barbara_lowell

Recap the Twitter Chat with Barbara Lowell here:


MAY 26thBrad McLelland – MG Author

Brad McLelland was born and raised in Arkansas. He spent several years working as a crime journalist in the South before earning his MFA in creative writing from Oklahoma State University. A part-time drummer and singer, Brad lives in Oklahoma with his wife, stepdaughter, a mini-Aussie who gives hugs, and a chubby cat who begs for ham.

Brad co-wrote his Middle Grade debut, LEGENDS OF THE LOST CAUSES, with Louis Sylvester. This book won the 2019 Oklahoma Book Award and is a Junior Library Guild Selection book. The pair teamed up to write the sequel, THE FANG OF THE BONFIRE CROSSING, which was published in Feb 2019. Book three is scheduled to be released in Feb 2020.

Learn more about Brad by visiting his website:

Brad’s Twitter handle is @bradmcbooks

Recap the Twitter Chat with Brad McLelland here:


JUNE 23rd  – Kelly Starling Lyons – Children’s Book Author

Kelly Starling Lyons children’s book author whose mission is to transform moments, memories and history into stories of discovery. She is a founding member of The Brown Bookshelf and an advocate for kidlit diversity.

Her books include CCBC Choices-honored picture book, ONE MILLION MEN AND ME; ELLEN’s BROOM, a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor book, Junior Library Guild and Bank Street Best selection; TEA CAKES FOR TOSH, a Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Young People and winner of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) Award for Juvenile Literature (sponsored by the AAUW of North Carolina); HOPE’S GIFT, a Storytelling World Award winner, IRA/CBC Children’s Choices selection and SIBA Okra Pick; and the popular JADA JONES chapter book series.

Learn more about Kelly by visiting her website:

Her Twitter handle is @kelstarly

Recap the Twitter Chat with Kelly Starling Lyons here:


JULY 28thJanee Trasler – Author/Illustrator

Janee Trasler writes and illustrates funny books for kids. Including the popular CHICKIES board book series and other great picture books like I AM NOT A CHAIR, CAVEMAN A.B.C. STORY, and the upcoming titles FROG MEETS DOG and GOAT ON A BOAT.

Janee loves to make kids laugh. Whether she is writing books, drawing pictures, singing songs, or performing with her puppets, she is going for the giggle. Janee lives in Texas with her hubby, her doggies, and one squeaky guinea pig.

Learn more about Janee by visting her website:

Her Twitter handle is @janeetrasler

Recap the Twitter Chat with Janee Trasler here:


AUGUST 25thFrancis Gilbert – Author/Editor

Frances Gilbert works at Random House where she is the Editor-in Chief at Doubleday Books for Young Readers. She started her career with books in high school when she worked in the children’s department of her town library. After graduating from university with an M.A. in English, her first job in publishing was as a Book Club Editor at Scholastic Canada in Toronto. She moved to New York in 2000 to set up a children’s editorial division at Sterling Publishing.

Frances is also a published author. Her picture book, GO, GIRLS, GO!, a cars and trucks book for girls, that was released last fall.

Her Twitter handle is @GoGirlsGoBooks

Recap the Twitter Chat with Francis Gilbert here:


SEPTEMBER 22ndRubin Pingk – Illustrator

Rubin Pingk is an author and illustrator living the small town life in Clinton, Utah, with his wife, two rowdy boys, a peckish pug, and a scheming cat. He is the author of Samurai Santa and Night of the Living Ninja.

Leanr more about Rubin by visiting his Facebook page:

His Twitter handle is @RubinPingk

Recap the Twitter Chat with Rubin Pingk here:


OCTOBER 27thTammi Sauer – Picture Book Author Extraordinaire


Tammi Sauer is a full-time children’s book author who presents at schools and conferences across the nation. She has 25 published picture books (along with many more under contract) with major publishing houses including Disney* Hyperion, HarperCollins, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Penguin Random House, Scholastic, Simon & Schuster, and Sterling.

In addition to winning awards, Tammi’s books have gone on to do great things. NUGGET & FANG was made into a musical and is currently on a national tour, WORDY BIRDY was named a Spring 2018 Kids’ Indy Next pick, an Amazon Best Book of the Month, and a Barnes & Noble Best Book of the Month, and YOUR ALIEN, an NPR Best Book of the Year, was recently released in Italian, Spanish Korean, and French, which makes her feel extra fancy.

Learn more about Tammi by visiting her website:

Her Twitter handle is @SauerTammi

Recap the Twitter Chat with Tammie Sauer here: