|See also: Children's Home | Picture Books Home|
What resources are available to me?
The best & most detailed resource is certainly the Writers' Workshop own editorial service - that way you get detailed feedback on your book from one of the country's top professionals.
But you can get very useful general information and advice from the Children's Writers' & Artists' Yearbook. You can buy this online, or through your local bookshop. It's packed with useful advice, listings and more
Do I need to illustrate my own work?
No. Publishers have illustrators who can do this. If you do want to illustrate your work., then you must make sure that your work is done to a very high standard. Nothing will put off a publisher faster than poor illustrations.
Do I need an agent?
No. Publishers don't pay large amounts for picture books - and agents wouldn't be able to make much from their 10% cut. It's fine to make submissions to publishers directly. Just remember to enclose a S.A.E. for their response. That said, if you do want to work with an agent, it's probably a good idea - at least until you find your feet in the industry, at which point you may prefer to go it alone.
What other research can I do?
Go into your local good quality bookshop (Waterstones / Ottakars, for preference). See what they're selling. Don't look at the good old classics - like Thomas the Tank Engine. Look at new titles by contemporary authors. It is these books which set the standard by which your book will be judged.
Should I pay to have my book published?
No, no, no and no. Real publishers pay you. Vanity publishers are happy to take your money but they aren't going to get your book into bookshops. For more on this, see our guide to the Bandits of the publishing world.
I've received rejections from publishers, but my friends and family are telling me that my book is great. What should I do now?
We hear this all the time. But your friends and family are, well, friends and family. Publishers actually have to back up their judgements with cash. It's no wonder that they're harder to convince.
Your best bet is to try at least half a dozen publishers with your work. If you get nowhere, that means your work isn't yet good enough. If you still believe in what you do, then come to us for detailed help & advice. We will get one of the country's top professionals in this area to give you detailed constructive feedback on your work. Our aim, as always, is to help you get published.