SCBWI's Blueboard - A Message & Chat Board

Genres & Age Categories => Picture Books (PB) => Topic started by: Blue Moon on June 02, 2015, 03:01 PM

Title: Manuscript submission
Post by: Blue Moon on June 02, 2015, 03:01 PM
Hello, I'm thinking about submitting a picture book I wrote to a publisher. What are some publishing companies that will accept unsolicited PB manuscripts? Is it appropriate to self publish or enter this story into a writing contest after I submit it?

I appreciate your help. Thanks.
Title: Re: Manuscript submission
Post by: heatherayris on June 03, 2015, 11:18 AM
There are many publishing companies that will accept unagented PB submissions. Some good ways to find them are by looking in Children's Writers and Illustrators Market or the SCBWI publication (can't remember the specific name) and then, of course, cross checking submission guidelines online. Also, read lots of books and take note of the publishers where you think your book might fit and look them up to see if they are open to submissions.

If you are going to submit to publishers you should not self publish until you have played that avenue out. Publishers are looking for unpublished manuscripts.

Entering some writing contests could be fine. It depends on the rules.
Title: Re: Manuscript submission
Post by: Christine B. on June 03, 2015, 02:59 PM
Hi Blue Moon,

As Heather mentioned, the Children's Writers and Illustrators Market is a great resource for finding potential agents, publishers, etc. The SCBWI publication is available online to SCBWI members. Joining SCBWI is great -- it's a huge wealth of information.

If you plan to submit to publishers, no, I would not self publish it in the meantime. Most publishers do not look at a book that has already been published. (Sure there are a few notable exceptions but in general, one chooses whether to go through traditional publishing or self publishing.)

Submitting to a contest may be okay, just be mindful of the rules of the contest as well as the publisher's own guidelines. For instance, if the contest intends to publish your work or any part of it, just be aware of that. If you ever have questions about a specific contest, post the contest guidelines here on the SCWBI blueboards and I am sure you will get some wise feedback about whether it should be okay to submit to that contest while subbing to publishers, or not.

You might also want to have your work critiqued, if you have not already. You can find peer critique groups by joining SCBWI.
Title: Re: Manuscript submission
Post by: JulieM on June 03, 2015, 05:47 PM
Also, the old fashioned way of going to the library and looking at PBs you like, or which are like yours, can set you on the path of appropriate publishers. Then you can consult their web site to see if they are accepting unsolicited PB submissions at the moment. Googling might help too. A few authors sometimes list on their web sites who's accepting what kind of subs.
Best of luck with your ms.
Title: Re: Manuscript submission
Post by: Darcy Miller on June 04, 2015, 11:25 AM
Is there a reason you don't want to look for an agent first?
Title: Re: Manuscript submission
Post by: Blue Moon on June 04, 2015, 04:20 PM
I'm not sure I can afford an agent.

I have one of SCBWI books from the mid 2000's, but I'm sure it's outdated by now.
Title: Re: Manuscript submission
Post by: Marissa Doyle on June 04, 2015, 04:57 PM
Blue Moon, that's not quite how agents work. They earn their $ when they sell your books--they usually take ~15% commission.  Never, ever, sign with an agent who asks for money up front to represent you.

You might find this post in our FAQ section helpful: https://www.scbwi.org/boards/index.php?action=faq;sa=show;faqid=8
Title: Re: Manuscript submission
Post by: Blue Moon on June 10, 2015, 12:06 AM
Thanks for the info, it's something I'll consider.