Peggy Tibbets' POV: The world of
children’s book publishing can be confusing and frustrating. In this column,
Tibbetts offers her point-of-view in response to writers’ burning questions
about writing and illustrating for children. As an Author, Associate Producer,
Managing/Contributing Editor and Columnist, Tibbets knows what she's talking
about! Check out the many articles by Tibbets under the category Tibbetts'
When I started out as a writer, my passion was to write children's books.
Of course, I didn't do enough research to know what that meant, so I failed. Ten
years later, I've gone back through the children's manuscripts and see why I
failed -- they were bad! So, I pulled out two of the best ideas, polished them,
and feel they are great! What do you recommend as the best and quickest way to
get them published? The whole process seems so overwhelming to me. At this time,
I've spent so many years to get to this point; I simply don't care about the
money, but rather that the books are in print. However, self-publishing is out
of the question right now, as I just can't afford it. My goal is to be a
full-time children's book writer and create several new titles a year. Please
share your expertise to steer me in the right direction?
Finding a publisher (or agent) is never easy or quick. There is no "best" way
to find a publisher. Traditional publishing, self-publishing and small (POD)
publishing all have their pitfalls. No matter what method you pursue, as a new
author you will be responsible for marketing and promoting your own work, which
is why self-publishing services and small print-on-demand (POD) publishers are
becoming more popular with writers who want to get a book published and build
Small POD publishers require the same process as traditional publishers. You
submit your manuscript and wait for a decision. If they offer a contract it's
usually for no advance but a larger royalty payment than traditional publishers
-- around 40%. It takes several months for them to produce the book and release
it to the public.
Self-publishing services such as Booklocker, Xlibris, and iUniverse
cost much less than self-publishing under your own imprint where you do all the
work and cover all the costs. You tend to save a lot on the up front printing
costs by going with a self-publishing service. Lately I've been hearing about a
new free self-publishing service called Lulu. Writers who have used the services on this web site
report they are happy with the results. I can't recommend them one way or
another, because I have no direct experience with them.
You might also find my article helpful, "The
Elephant in the Room: Marketing Your Children's Manuscript".
Tibbetts is the author of the children's novel The Road to
Weird, as well as the adult novel Rumors of
War. She was managing editor and columnist at Writing-World.com. She has also worked as an associate
producer of educational videos for Upper Midwest Films, contributing editor for
Children's Magic Window magazine, and Children's Writing Resource Editor at
Inkspot.com. Contact Peggy at: peggyt"at"siltnet.net