Recently, I've been attending a graduate school where I am studying writing. The wonderful thing about this college is that the class groups become very close and have a tradition of adopting a name for themselves.
July 2008, I began a picture book certificate course at Vermont College of Fine Arts in the school of Writing for Children and Young Adults. This is a correspondence course with the requirement that students spend 10 days on campus attending lectures and readings from 8:30 am to after 9:00 pm. Then we go home and write (at least 25 hours a week, often more), sending our work to our advisor about every 4 weeks in an email packet. At the next residency, in January 2009, our picture book group gave a lecture about what we had learned.
In 2010, I read One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia. Instantly, I realized that I needed to go back to Vermont College of Fine Arts and take the full course (4 semesters) that would result in an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults.
Names of the classes I have been a part of are:
July 2010 - Thunder Badgers (they began their study the semester I did the Picture Book Certificate program)
January 2013 - Dystropians
Then I had to take a break because of family events. I came back and joined:
July 2014 - Allies in Wonderland
Another break in attendance
January 2015 - Darling Assassins
July 2015 - The Craftographers
I hope to graduate at the July 2015 Residency.
All these groups contain wonderful writers and it's been my privilege to have known them.
Look for their books coming out in the next few years.