Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Mid-Year Bios


  LINDA RODRIGUEZ BERNFELD (SCBWI Florida Co-Regional Advisor) has worked in radio, television, and newspapers. Today she’s a freelance writer, interviewing teens for positive people stories. She also writes newspaper stories about as many children’s writers as she can. Linda helped revive SCBWI in Florida when she started the Miami Mini-Conferences in 2001, which later became the Florida Regional Conference. She was able to get the first conference going when she overrode everyone’s objections and declared “conferences aren’t that much work.” Over the years, the conferences have become more and more complicated but they remain just as much fun. This is the year that Linda hopes to break out of the pack and actually finish a book. Linda is married to Jerry Bernfeld and has two sons, Brian, 21, and Kevin, 25 and their rescue dogs, Harley and Nestle, who spend as much time cowering at thunderstorms in the closet as Linda does reading children’s books.
Gaby Head Shot GABY TRIANA (SCBWI Florida Co-Regional Advisor) is a YA author, wedding cake designer, and freelance ghostwriter. Her books, BACKSTAGE PASS, CUBANITA, THE TEMPTRESS FOUR, andRIDING THE UNIVERSE (HarperCollins), have earned the IRA Teen Choice Award, ALA Best Paperbacks, and HISPANIC MAGAZINE'S Good Reads of 2008. Gaby is obsessed with Halloween, Disney World, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, driving fast cars, hosting parties, and spending time with her three boys. Her ghostly mystery, WAKE THE HOLLOW, is currently out on submission, as well as her delicious, magical YA called CAKESPELL. Gaby’s time-travel fantasy, SUMMER OF YESTERDAY (SimonPulse), about River Country, Disney’s abandoned water park, releases on June 17, 2014, and Publisher’s Weekly calls it a “feel-good…sweet, light-hearted escape.” She is represented by Deborah Warren of East/West Literary. Visit her at and @GabyTriana on Twitter.
Curtis Sponsler CURTIS SPONSLER (SCBWI Florida Assistant Regional Advisor) was born an artist and geek – and he is damned proud of it. He applies his passion as a 3D animator and motion graphic designer and has received an Emmy for his animation, along with numerous other awards (Telly, Addy, Cleo, and more). Curtis' creative direction and design have been seen on national TV networks, cable channels, and before large convention audiences for over 25 years. His first published book was The Focal Easy Guide to After Effects, a tutorial reference guide for beginning to intermediate artists and broadcast industry designers. He is currently revising his novels, REALM OF THE PAW and CHARLOTTE’S W3B UNRAVELED, as well as drafting his newest YA novel, NOWHERE WOLF and producing kickass book trailers for fellow SCBWI authors.
Linda Shute LINDA SHUTE (SCBWI Florida Illustrator Coordinator) was a latchkey bookworm growing up in West Miami where she was inspired by Kate Seredy's books to be an author/illustrator. Characters in Linda's 14 picture books range from leprechauns to Chesapeake explorers. She earned an art degree at FSU and taught Children's Book Illustration at Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota. Linda has enjoyed being Florida SCBWI Illustrator Coordinator for four years.




SARAH BAKER is the Director of Illustration and Artist Programs at SCBWI. She manages and develops the illustrator grants, awards, and scholarships, advises and mentors SCBWI illustrator members, and serves as the designer and art director for the Bulletin and all other SCBWI publications. Before coming to SCBWI, Sarah designed children's books for six years at Penguin Young Readers Group. 

JAIMIE ENGLE is from Melbourne, Florida and the award-winning, middle-grade author of CLIFTON CHASE AND THE ARROW OF LIGHT. Her young adult novella, The Regime, also received Honorable Mention in the 2013 L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future contest, and she placed second in the 2012 Space Coast Writer’s Guild short story competition. She is represented by Pam Van Hylckama Vlieg of Foreword Literary.    

MARJETTA GEERLING is the author of FANCY WHITE TRASH (Viking), an ALA 2009 Best Books for Young Adults and 2009 Rainbow List selection. She holds an M.F.A. in Writing from Spalding University. Marjetta lives in Miami Beach where she teaches composition at several local colleges as well as private writing workshops for teens and adults.

CARTER HASEGAWA is an assistant editor at Candlewick Press. Since 2008, he's been a children's bookseller at various independent bookstores in Seattle and Cambridge, which he still continues to do part-time when not at Candlewick. Some of his favorite, non-Candlewick books include: THE NOTORIOUS BENEDICT ARNOLD, JELLICOE ROAD, ELEANOR & PARK, READY PLAYER ONE, THREE TIMES LUCKY, and many, MANY others. He loves anything that basically has a great voice, a good story, and is "unputdownable."

LESLIE HELAKOSKI is a picture book author and illustrator. She is the author of eight award-winning picture books such as BIG CHICKENS, WOOLBUR, and FAIR COW. She has illustrated her three most recent books, including her newest release BIG PIGS. Leslie is also the SCBWI Co-Regional Advisor for Michigan.

WENDY LOGGIA is Executive Editor at Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, where she edits middle grade and YA fiction. She is the editor of Teardrop by Lauren Kate, Starters by Lissa Price (a Sunshine State book), Being Sloane Jacobs by Lauren Morrill, Don’t Even Think About It by Sarah Mlynowski, Hexed by Michelle Krys, and the romantic thriller The Here and Now by Ann Brashares, to name a few.

SANDRA MARKLE is the author of more than 200 non-fiction books for children and has won numerous awards for her work. In addition to her books, she has developed science specials for CNN and PBS. She is also noted for being Ms. Whiz on television in Atlanta, Georgia and for developing two widely-acclaimed Internet-based programs for the National Science Foundation: On-Line Expedition: Antarctica, one of the first online educational programs from a remote location, and Kit & Kaboodle, an Internet-based science education program that has been used by thousands of schools in all fifty states plus eleven countries.

TAMAR MAYS edits HarperChildren’s 50-year-old LET’S-READ-AND-FIND-OUT series, a heavily illustrated science series for elementary school children. Her editorial focus is early childhood, from age four through about third grade. Tamar also edits Harper’s I CAN READ! series, many PINKALICIOUS titles, as well as picture books and first chapter books. Previously, Tamar was the manager for the Lucky School Book Club (for 2nd and 3rd graders) at Scholastic.

STEVE MOOSER is the SCBWI’s co-founder, president, and author of more than 60 books for children. Picture book titles include: The Ghost with the Halloween Hiccups, the nonfiction Lights! Camera! Scream! series, The All-Star Meatballs and The Creepy Creature Club, and novels such as IT’S A WEIRD, WEIRD SCHOOL and CLASS CLOWN ACADEMY. A former filmmaker and treasure hunter, many of Steve’s adventures have found their way into his books. Among his awards are The Christopher Medal for The New York Kids Book and a 2010 Eric Carle Honor Award as a Mentor.

ALEXANDRA PENFOLD is an agent at Upstart Crow Literary and has been working in publishing for over a decade. Formerly an editor at Paula Wiseman Books/Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, she represents young picture books, middle-grade fiction, and young adult. Prior to becoming an editor, Alexandra was a children's book publicist. 

FRANK REMKIEWICZ is an author/illustrator who has illustrated children's books by many authors, including Alma Flor Ada and Betsy Byars. His self-illustrated works have met with positive critical reception, but he is perhaps best known as the illustrator for the popular HORRIBLE HARRY and SONG LEE series, written by Suzy Kline, and the FROGGY series, written by Jonathan London. Remkiewicz's drawings have been described by Diane Roback of Publishers Weekly as "bold swatches of color crisply outlined."

MELISSA STEWART is an award-winning author of more than 150 nonfiction books for children, including FEATHERS: NOT JUST FOR FLYING; NO MONKEYS, NO CHOCOLATE; UNDER THE SNOW; A PLACE FOR BUTTERFLIES; and ANIMAL GROSSAPEDIA. Melissa maintains the blog Celebrate Science and serves on the board of advisors for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. 

MARCIA WERNICK is an agent at Wernick & Pratt Agency who represents authors whose works range through all genres for children. She currently works with best-selling and award-winning author and illustrator Bryan Collier, Jackie Urbanovic, flying-start middle grade novelist Kathleen O’Dell, and Elizabeth Cody Kimmel. Marcia continues to love finding new talent and is always drawn to strong voices and age-appropriate stories that engage, entertain, and amuse the reader. In fiction, strong opening lines and first chapters that compel one to read on are key. She’s a sucker for southern voices, but overall shies away from mean-spirited characters and horror.

DEBORAH WILES is the author of picture books and novels for young readers including LOVE, RUBY LAVENDER and EACH LITTLE BIRD THAT SINGS, a National Book Award Finalist. COUNTDOWN and her newest book, REVOLUTION, are documentary novels, the first of their kind — fiction with primary source scrapbooks and biographies — and are books one and two of "The Sixties Trilogy: Three Novels of the 1960s for Young Readers." She teaches and writes from Atlanta, Georgia.