Featuring Jackie Hartman Kruzie
Regional Advisor for the North Texas SCBWI Chapter
She’s also a wife, a mother of five and an author. Wouldn’t it be interesting to hear how she juggles all these important jobs?
Welcome Jacki kruzie and thank you for taking the time from your busy schedule to enlighten us.
*Our annual conference was spectacular and we all know it didn’t just happen. Does it begin with the theme? How do you decide which one to choose?
At the beginning of each year our chapter’s leadership team meets and discusses a theme for the year. The leadership team currently consists of seven members. We choose a theme and plan events for the year that follow the theme.
As for the conference, me and the Assistant Regional Advisor, Beth Mills, have already begun planning the 2019 fall conference. In a few weeks I will send invitations to potential faculty members and start the process of pricing out venues. Most venues book several months in advance and many agents and editors plan their travel schedule at the beginning of the year. In order to nail down a specific faculty member I have to send invitations early. I also have to anticipate that not everyone will accept the invitation. When this happens I must start the process all over again. Giving myself enough time to find faculty members is an essential part of the planning process, the details of the conference come together later.
*There’s an old saying, when you want something done, ask someone who’s busy. What’s your secret for balancing your time?
I wish I had a secret! In addition to SCBWI I am also a library director and currently working towards my Master of Library Science degree. Oh yeah and I’m a wife and mother…Truth is I sometimes miss a deadline, neglect an email, skip a soccer game, make mac & cheese for dinner, or stay up all night to get work done while the house is quiet. I put forth my best effort, rely on my helpful husband, and don’t sweat the small stuff.
*You also are a writer at heart and are represented by Marisa Corvisiero. What is your latest story?
I was represented by Marisa Corvisiero with Corvisiero Literary Agency, however we recently parted ways. It is always difficult to end a partnership, especially one you had high hopes for, but the story she had out on submission wasn’t gaining the momentum either of us hoped. We parted amicably and now I am once again on the search for representation. I learned a few valuable lessons through this experience. First, don’t assume that because you have an agent your work is done. Second, don’t be afraid to terminate a contract if the partnership is not in your best interest.
As for writing, I have been focusing on nonfiction picture books, which I love, but my newest work in progress is outside of my comfort zone; a chapter book! One of my critique partners has been encouraging me for quite some time to attempt writing a longer piece and I finally accepted the challenge. It is so much fun. I don’t know why it took me so long to get on board!
*Was your heart always into writing?
Yes! I have loved writing since I was in elementary school. My school hosted a yearly Young Authors Conference on the last day of school each year. For weeks leading up to the day students would write, draw, and assemble their books. On the day of the conference, students would share their stories, attend music and theatrical performances, and have a picnic lunch. It was my favorite day of the year! I decided then and there I wanted to be an author.
* Is there anything else you’d like us to know?
There is no shortcut to accomplishing a goal. Don’t cut corners; take the class, view the webinar, go to the conference, join the critique group, do the work. Not only will your ability and confidence soar, but others will recognize your efforts and respect you for it.
How exciting for you, Jackie, to begin something totally new---a chapter book!
I wish you the best and look forward to seeing it published!
Thank you Jackie!
Find more about Jackie at: www.jaclynkruzie.com