For Writers and Illustrators

Resources for Writers and Illustrators

Traditional Markets:

Chicken Soup for the Soul is a publisher of true, motivational, inspiring, heartwarming and heartfelt stories. If you have a story that happened in your life that can bring joy and awareness to chicken soup readers, check out their online submission form “Send Us a Story”. Be prepared to wait a long, long time to hear back.  They don’t tell you if they are NOT going to use your story.  They pay $300 for stories.  They buy true stories from adults, kids, and teenagers.

The Children’s Book Council (CBC) is a non-profit trade organization that has been dedicated to encouraging literacy and the use and enjoyment of children’s books since 1945.  A good market guide for you updated monthly: CBC Market Guide:  CBC Markets.

Cricket Magazine Group is a publisher that includes Muse, Click, Cicada, Cricket, Spider, Ladybug and Babybug magazines.  Check out their “Submission Guidelines” at for writing and illustrating guidelines and payment terms for all of the magazines.

Stone Soup Magazine is a magazine that brings young readers thought-provoking stories, heartfelt poems, and beautiful art by their peers worldwide. Budding writers and artists are encouraged to create and submit their own work.  Carefully follow their “Contributors’ guidelines” to submit your stories and illustrations. Contributors of stories, poems, book reviews, and art work are paid $25 each, illustrators are paid $15 per illustration, and the cover artist is paid $50.


AGENTQUERY.COM: a great place to look when you are searching for a good agent:

Neil Gaiman – Inspirational Commencement Speech at the University of the Arts Class of 2012: Watch this on YouTube and enjoy!

Seven Simple Rules for Good Writing
This is everything I know about good writing style in seven simple rules.

Picture Book Writing Kit
This is a one-page handout I use in my writing workshops. It has the elements of writing a picture book–all put together in this little kit. Enjoy!  Picture Book Writing Kit.

Literary Rambles: Spotlighting Children’s Book Authors, Agents and Publishers, an especially good list of agents and what they think:

Aaron Shepard’s Kidwriter Page: Tips on How to Write, Sell & Promote Children’s Books

North Texas Chapter of
The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators
This is a wonderfully supportive, professional group of people.  Learn the ropes of writing and illustrating for children.  This organization can save you from making years of common mistakes.

The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators is the only professional organization dedicated to serving the people who write, illustrate, or share a vital interest in children’s literature. Whether you are a professional writer, a famous illustrator, a beginner with a good idea, or
somewhere in-between, SCBWI is here to serve you. Their Web site has a dual purpose: It exists as a service to their members as well as offering information about the children’s publishing industry and their organization to non-members. Your time here will be well spent.

A Fantastic Rhyming Dictionary and Thesaurus: RhymeZone

My Simple Plot Outline for a Picture Book:  When I first learned a plot outline from Dr. George Stanley, I started selling my writing.  Once you understand the concepts behind the outline, you do not need to slavishly go by this.  Watch how the tension builds throughout your story.  Plot outline.

Spectacular Critique Guidelines! Here are simple guidelines to take your critiques to a higher professional level. In my 39 years of critiques, I’ve found my critique friends to be the vital link to my success and publication. Spectacular Critique Guidelines!

Storyboard your Picture Book: This is a valuable tool for visualizing your whole picture book on one pageYou do not need to be an artist to use this.  It shows the proper 32-page format for picture books.  It also shows you where your page turns and double-page spreads are located in your book. Click on Debbie Ohi’s link below for a wonderful one-page printout.
Storyboard Printout

Writing a cover letter for your book:  Sometimes, this is where writers get stuck.  This is based on a class I gave on writing cover letters for the North Central/ Northeast TX Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Cover letter information.

Resources for Finding a Job in Publishing by Cindy Kane Author/Editor:  
This will show you many ways to break into publishing.  Check out this link at

The Jan Peck Publishing Link Sheet



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Publishers Lunch:

Publishers Weekly Marketplace:       

Children’s Bookshelf Weekly: Breaking news, author interviews, book reviews, and more for children’s and young adult publishing:


Children’s Literature from Hornbook:

Linked-In SCBWI list: Join and receive notices of new additions. Includes posts by editors Harold Underdown, Emma Dryden, and many others.

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Publishing Children’s Books. His social media resources:

Emma Dryden: Join her Facebook business page:

EBOOK SITES/Self Publishing: (I am in the process of updating this section, please check back later.

1.Smashwords: Started by Mark Coker: Best site to begin ebook journey. Easy to upload, get ISBN’s, and get distribution.  Their “meat grinder” program converts your Word document to all forms of files for readers, computers, and iphones etc. It takes trial and error at first, but you’ll get the hang of it. The free Smashwords Style Guide and Smashwords Book Marketing Guide are a help in getting an overview of the ebook jungle.

 2. Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing:

3. Barnes and Noble Pub-It:

4. CreateSpace: is the best deal for most independently published books.

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