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'
I am a teacher and aspiring picture book author. Last year I sent out my
manuscript to a number of publishers. Some had positive comments, but all
ultimately rejected the proposal. Since this time I've revised and rewritten the
cover letter and book in question. May I resubmit it to the same publishers or
isn't that advisable?
A similar question about resubmitting to agents is covered in my August 2005
column: How do I handle resubmitting my novel? Since then I have encountered
some disagreement among writers about whether or not to resubmit a manuscript.
While many writers still feel it is not a good idea to resubmit to agents, it is
probably okay to resubmit to an editor.
However, judging from my own experience, it's perfectly okay to resubmit to
agents or publishers. First of all, timing is everything. And while your
manuscript might not fit in an editor's plan one year, maybe after a second look
she will find a place for it. Of course that's if the editor who reads it is the
same editor who looked at it the first time around.
Editors move around from one publisher to another -- as a matter of fact
that's been happening a lot lately. Harold Underdown helps writers keep track of
editors on his "Who's Moving Where" page at his web site, The Purple Crayon.
Many publishers employ editorial assistants or manuscript readers to sort
through submissions. In those cases your manuscript is bound to get a second
look, and perhaps move higher up the chain of command, so it's definitely worth
There is also some disagreement among writers as to whether or not you should
mention in your cover letter that the editor has seen the manuscript before, or
that you have revised it. My position on this, again based on my experience, is
that you don't need to say anything -- let the manuscript speak for itself.
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