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If you want to submit a childrens book to publishers / agent, do you need to have your illustrations done too?

(7 Posts)
TelephoneTree Thu 27-Sep-12 21:05:32

Also - which is better - to go directly to a publishers or via an agent?
How long do they usually take to respond?

Ruthchan Thu 27-Sep-12 21:59:51

Most publishers prefer to organise their own illustrations for work, unless you are a seriously talented artist.

The publisher direct/through an agent is an age-old question.
Both seem to have advantages and disadvantages, but most people seem to end up going through agents.

JoMumof3 Thu 27-Sep-12 22:45:55

There's loads of stuff on the internet if you Google 'how to get a children's book published'. You don't need illustrations, as Ruthchan said, they tend to prefer their own.
Make sure you do your homework on which publishers accept manuscripts and how to set them out before submitting anything.
Each publisher is different as to how long it takes them to reply. If you email (although not many publishers accept submission by email) you are more likely to not hear back at all. With submissions by post they do tend to reply, even if it is a standard rejection letter.
Sorry, that probably sounds quite negative but I've done this process and you do have to get used to rejection letters. However I'm having my first (and hopefully not my last) book published in March! Good luck with yours :-)

TelephoneTree Fri 28-Sep-12 13:03:27

Brilliant, thank you both and well done Jo - how exciting!

TheWishaTree Fri 28-Sep-12 19:25:14

It does seem to take a very long time to hear back from some - and then you get instant rejection from others! Have you seen the Litopia site? That's a pretty good place for all kinds of writerly things and is run by Peter Cox, Michelle Paver's agent.

TelephoneTree Fri 28-Sep-12 20:59:45

Just googling Litopia now....thanks!

So do you just submit to as many publishers and agents as you can get your hands on, all at once?

JoMumof3 Fri 28-Sep-12 21:58:34

TelephoneTree, have you seen the competition with Walker Books on the homepage of Mumsnet? That sounds like a really good place to start.

You can submit to several publishers at a time, as long as you tell them it is a multiple submission. It is pretty expensive buying all the stamps you need though so I I used to send to 4 or 5 a time. It is a long drawn out process, be prepared to be patient.

Is your book ready? Have you had friends etc read it and provide feedback? Have you checked all your grammar is correct? I found all this took a long time too.

WishaTree I've never heard of Litopia, thanks for the tip :-)

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