Here’s a list of 22 specialized manuscript publishers that accept direct submissions, compiled by Emily Harstone. See the complete list with links at Authors Publish.
You’re a writer the moment you write. But if you want to be a published author, one route is to obtain representation. That means researching which literary agent(s) seem like a good fit for your writing and sending them query letters. Literary agents are extremely helpful to a writing career because they can submit to publishers that are closed to unsolicited submissions, negotiate better contracts on your behalf, and some provide editorial guidance. The following post by Mary Kole can be read in full at Writer’s Digest.
By Emily Harstone
Young adult is one of my favorite genres to read, even though when I was a young adult I struggled to find good YA books. These days the young adult genre is profitable, diverse, and covers a wide variety of genres, from science fiction to romance and everything in between.
A lot of young adult publishers are open to submissions without an agent. Not as many as in the romance genre, but a great deal more than literary fiction (for example). Below is a list of all the publishers we have previously reviewed that are open to young adult manuscripts.
Some of these publishers exclusively publish young adult novels, others publish children’s books as well, while others are open to a wider variety of genres and age groups. Not all of the publishers are currently open to submissions, but the majority of them are. If you click on the name of the publisher it will link to our full review of them. All our full reviews contain links to the various publishers’ submission pages.
The list is in no particular order.
Page Street Publishing
Page Street Publishing is a publisher of YA and Children’s publisher. They have excellent distribution.
Blue Moon Publishers
Blue Moon is a boutique Canadian Publisher. They focus on publishing literary fiction and women’s fiction, as well as young adult and middle grade works. The stories they publish span various genres including contemporary, historical, mystery, science fiction, and fantasy.
Shadow Mountain is an imprint of Deseret Book. Both publishers are Mormon, but Deseret Book focuses more on producing faith-based content. Shadow Mountain publishes primarily fiction and they have published a number of New York Times bestselling books. Because the company is Mormon run, books have to be approved by in-house censors in order to be published. They are very firm about publishing “clean books only”. However the authors need not be Mormon.
Charlesbridge publishes high quality books for children and young adults with the goal of creating lifelong readers and lifelong learners. They have good distribution.
Read the rest of the list.
Written by Emily Harstone
All of the publishers on this list publish children’s books. Some just publish picture books, some publish only middle-grade fiction, and some publish a wide variety of genres aimed at adults as well. Some are looking for educational work, others are open to anything. A number of these publishers are large and established. Others are small and just starting out.
Nobrow Press is a respected publisher of graphic novels and Flying Eye is their children’s book imprint. Flying Eye publishes both fiction and nonfiction picture books. Nobrow Press and Flying Eye are both different from what we normally review because they are looking for either an author/illustrator or an already formed author-illustrator pair with a book to pitch. They do seem to make exceptions, but for the most part they are not interested in matching illustrators with authors.
Allen & Unwin
Allen & Unwin is a large independent Australian Press that is open to submissions on a wide range of topics. They have won a number of Australian publisher awards. They accept based on pitches, and have a system known as the “Friday Pitch” which ensures that at least one editor reviews each unsolicited pitch.
Sleeping Bear Press
Sleeping Bear Press is a well regarded publisher of board books, picture books, middle grade readers, and young adult fiction. They offer advances to some authors. They have good regional distribution in the Midwest and ok distribution in North America. Their books have won a wide variety of awards, all of them are listed here.
Gibbs Smith is an established publisher with good distribution and a focus on cook books, interior design and architecture books, and board books for children. They have published a number of bestsellers, including a board book version of Pride & Prejudice.
For the rest of this list, see https://www.authorspublish.com/55-childrens-book-publishers-seeking-submissions/
Want to participate in Picture Book Critique Fest 2019? Do you write or illustrate picture books? This MASSIVE one-time picture book critique giveaway celebration is for you! They have 35 picture book critiques to giveaway!
The vision for this event is to celebrate the critique and revision process and to help build the KidLit community. It is hoped that actual, living, breathing books will be birthed out of this process.
The festival is happening October 3rd-25th. The deadline to enter the raffle will be October 25th 9AM CST. 35 winners will be randomly selected and then “paired with their person” based on information provided on the registration form. Winners will be announced the evening of October 25th on Twitter, Facebook, and on a Picture Book Spotlight blog post.
Want more info on how it all came together and why it’s happening? Go to PBSpotlight.com!
Here are the industry professionals who’ll be providing the critiques:
Had a fantastic time at San Diego Comic-Con. I participated in three panels and got to hang out with some amazing authors. Took a ton of pictures for my friends who couldn’t be there. Enjoy!
My little Predator? One of my favorite pictures from the convention.
My sons and I outside the San Diego Convention Center
In the San Diego Convention Center, no one can hear you scream!
The Dark Crystal, Planet of the Apes, and Lord of the Rings sculptures
A giant Mr. Krabs from Spongebob Squarepants!
“Not with 10,000 men could you do this.”
Ah, Dungeons & Dragons humor…
Puppets from the upcoming TV show Crank Yankers
Tiki Yoda and Moana !?
Godzilla doesn’t like waiting in lines either.
A sketch of me by the creator of Mr. Toast
The importance of good dental hygiene…
I’ve got my eye on you!
Domino from X-Men
Stephen King’s IT
Final Fantasy characters
3A figures from Ashley Woods
Magic Wheelchairs ❤
Met the kind and talented author of THE NIGHT CIRCUS, Erin Morgenstern
The wonderful author of SHADOW AND BONE, Leigh Bardugo, wins the Inkpot award
Leigh Bardugo and Erin Morgenstern: talented and funny
Are You There, Gods? It’s Us, the Protagonists panel with authors Rebecca Roanhorse, Scott Westerfeld, Margaret Rogerson, Ann Leckie, and Joan He
Ruby Rod cosplay from The Fifth Element. Supergreen!
Joffrey cosplay from Game of Thrones
The Future as I See It panel with authors Gini Koch, Tim Zahn, Steven Sears, Jonathan Maberry, Javier Grillo-Marxuach, and Seanan McGuire
The Fantastic Flavors of Fantasy panel with authors Renee Ahdieh, Lauren Shippen, Katy Pool, Nicole Conway, Sherrilyn Kenyon, and Marissa Meyer
Those Toy Story green army “men” are real people!
Jonathan Maberry gives Nancy Holder the Scribe Award
Star Wars samurai cosplay!
Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild cosplay
Wherefore Dystopia and Darkness panel with bestselling authors Jess Rothenberg, Richard Kadrey, S.L. Huang, Ally Condie, Rachel Caine, and Marie Lu
Admiral Ackbar cosplay from Star Wars. “It’s a trap!”
Fembot cosplay from Austin Powers
Shego and Kim Possible cosplay
Tank Girl cosplay
The Writers Coffeehouse author panel with (l to r) me, Jonathan Maberry, Delilah Dawson, Peter Clines and Scott Sigler.
I can’t wait to see this urban fantasy series!
Carnival Row stars Orlando Bloom and Cara Delevingne. Is it hot in here, or is it just me?
Cara Delevingne’s fairy character takes flight off the edge of a cliff.
Six-foot tall LEGO Batman minifigure
Monty Python and the Holy Grail cosplay. “There are some who call me… Tim.”
Wakanda (Black Panther) / Spiderman basketball team cosplay. SDCC is known for such creative mashups.
Chun-Li cosplay from Street Fighter video game
Green Arrow cosplay
Peter Pan Lost Boy Rufio cosplay from the movie Hook
Beetlejuice cosplay. Don’t say his name three times
Stellar Stories and Awesome Adventures panel with authors Maura Milan, Mark Siegel, Tochi Onyebuchi, Ashley Poston, and Maryelizabeth Yturralde
Disney Hyperion Publishing panel with authors/editors Emily Meehan, Brittany Rubiana, Serena Valentino, and Jocelyn Davies
Theseus and the Minotaur cosplay
Three interpretations of Judge Dredd cosplay
Lord Voldemort: He Who Shall Not Be Named. Oops.
Skeleton warrior cosplay
Wonder Woman cosplay
Game of Thrones cosplay: Cersei, The Mountain, The Night King, Arya wondering why SHE isn’t killing the Night King
Rick and Morty cosplay
Global debut of the cover of my upcoming picture book, 2 Pirates + 1 Robot, from Kane Miller Books.
My fantasy/sci-fi author panel with (l to r) Tomi Adeyemi, Lev Grossman, A.G. Howard, Aditi Khorana, and Jonathan Maberry.
They packed the room!
Fans of The Magicians may recall Umber asking for little cakes. I brought Lev Grossman some little cakes.
After the panel, the authors signed their books. Many added graffiti to the tablecloth. Someone drew salmon. Author Chuck Wendig apparently has no respect for sustainable salmon farming. And the feeling is mutual.
Lev Grossman (The Magicians) left his own graffiti.
Mostly, we signed books. Here author Lev Grossman signs a fan’s chest.
My favorite cosplay of the convention: Warhammer 40K Sisters of Battle! Adepta Sororitas
My KidLit literary agent panel with (l to r) Hannah Mann, Thao Le, Kelly Sonnack and Stefanie Von Borstel.
Writing Craft panel with authors Sarah Gailey, Annalee Newitz, Charlie Jane Anders, Seanan McGuire, and Cory Doctorow
Godzilla, Ghidorah, and Rodan resin miniatures
Sci-fi author greats Larry Niven, Greg Bear, and David Brin
Fandom Meets YA panel with authors Livia Blackburne, Mary Pearson, Tricia Levenseller, A.G. Howard, and C.B. Lee
Lord of the Rings cosplay. A Minas Tirith dress! “For Gondor!!”
Reinventing the Modern Girl panel with authors Seanan McGuire, Danielle Paige, Sarah Kuhn, Nila Macgruder, Cecil Castellucci, and Jenn Fujikawa.
Had a great time at WonderCon, as usual. Here are some photos to prove it!
The grand entrance.
Miscellaneous superheroes, including a McDonalds Thor and a Jack in the Box Dr. Strange!
Something special for anyone who’s ever worked in an office.
The Empire captures little Spiderman and a Mario brother.
Star Wars trio.
Panel: Unicorns, Rabbits, Aliens and Other People, with (l to r) Maryelizabeth Yturalde, Dana Simpson, Leah Thomas, Jim Pascoe, Nicole Conway, and Cecil Castellucci.
Clever way to protect your vendor booth when nature calls.
Star Trek Fred Flintstone: set phasers to stone!
Is it me, or did it suddenly get very judgey in here? Personally, I prefer Karl Urban’s Judge Dredd over Sly Stallone’s.
Six foot tall LEGO minifigure cosplay. Not so mini now!
My KidLit author panel with (l to r) Lee Wardlaw, Molly Idle, Peter S. Beagle, me, Jo Whittemore, Scott Campbell, and (not shown) Barbara Bottner.
They packed the room!
Any time you’re feeling full of yourself, just do a signing next to Peter Beagle. #LineEnvy
General Grievous bids you farewell until next year!