Saturday, January 12, 2013

Top 5 Online Resources for Children's and YA Book Writers

Updated 10/21/21

Children's books are a burgeoning market. Along with the YA market, they constitute the most popular - and top-grossing - genre of books.

Although some small publishing houses still accept manuscripts from writers, the larger houses require an agent. As a consequence, agents who specialize in children's books are burgeoning as well.

Writers who are daunted by the process of securing a publisher are increasingly turning to self-publication, a field which is burgeoning along with children's book agents, writers, and publishers.

With all this burgeoning, where can a children's book writer find reliable, comprehensive, and concise information about publishing and marketing? 

Among the spate of websites that offer information about the world of children's literature, there are five that stand out as particularly useful. Make these the first stops on your path to publication.

Related Posts:

23 US Children's Book Publishers Accepting Manuscripts Directly From Writers

10 UK Children's Book Publishers Accepting Manuscripts Directly from Writers


1. Literary Rambles: Spotlighting Children's Book Authors, Agents and Publishing

Hosts: Casey McCormick and Natalie Aguirre

If you are looking for an agent, this blog is for you! Every Thursday this site puts the spotlight on an agent who represents children's fiction. The spotlight profiles what these agents are looking for, personal quotes, interviews, response times, what other writers are saying about their professionalism, as well as linking up their web presence – all in one convenient post.

Site features: Over 120 agent spotlights, list of agencies representing children's books, interviews, helpful posts, and numerous links to agent blogs, editor blogs and forums. Also included is an agent search by age category (PB, MG or YA). Be sure to look at the wonderful list of resources on the right sidebar.

2. Rachelle Burk's Resources for Writers

Host: Rachelle Burk

This blog provides one-stop shopping for children's book authors. Rachelle Burk, a children's book writer from New Jersey, has compiled an extensive list of resources designed to help writers with every aspect of their careers – from writing tips to legal advice.

Site features: Helpful writing articles, Publisher/Agent Warning sites, Publisher Listings, Agents, Editors, Query and Cover Letters, Websites: Sources and articles about writing for children, Newsletters and E-zines, Online Forums, Critique Groups, Critique and Editing Services, Author Visits, Nonfiction Writing, Work-For-Hire and Freelance, Reference Resources, Rhyming and Poetry, Writing Organizations, Workshops, Courses and Conferences, Legal Advice, Contests and Awards, Teacher’s Guides, Book Reviewers, Illustrators and Images, Self-Publishing, Print on Demand and Subsidy Publishers, Electronic Publishing, Book Marketing and Promotion, Author Sites for Book Promotion, Books on Writing for Children, National and International Writers' Organizations, Blog List. Of special interest: Resources for Kids Who Write.

3. Writing for Children

Writing-World is an all-around resource for writers of every stripe. The children's book page contains a list of eye-opening articles.

Site features: The Art and Craft of Writing for Children, Picture Books, YA Books, Agents, Publishers, Book Promotion and Author Interviews. Of special interest: Specialized Markets.

4. Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators

Membership: $95, annual renewal $80

If you haven't already joined the SCBWI, now's the time! With membership, you get The SCBWI Bulletin, a bi-monthly publication containing the most current, comprehensive information about the field of children’s literature. The Bulletin includes the latest marketing reports; articles on writing, illustrating, and publishing; contests and awards announcements; SCBWI member news; and ongoing SCBWI activities throughout the world.

Site features (free): Comprehensive list of awards and grants. The “Find a Speaker” search bar is a great way to locate other children's book writers in your area (which is absolutely essential for networking).

5. Children's Books Resources

This site features: Links to children's book publishers, submission guidelines, children's book illustrators sites, Writing Children's Books Courses, Sites About Writing for Children, and How tos for writing and publishing. The website also includes Australian, British and Canadian publishers.

Additional sites of interest

Jacketflap - JacketFlap connects you to the work of more than 200,000 authors, illustrators and other creators of books for children and young adults as well as provides an extensive database of publishers, agents, editors, and other industry contacts.

The YA Shelf - The YA Shelf hosts young adult literature contests and giveaways.

Adventures in YA Publishing - Adventures in YA Publishing hosts young adult book giveaways for fiction titles. The novels are ARCs,  recently released, or about to be released.

The Purple Crayon Blog - Questions about children's publishing answered by a children's book editor, and current children's publishing links.

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