Just like an archer needs a bow and some arrows to hit a target, a writer needs a few tools to successfully target a publisher. Here are some that will help:
· Writers’ Guides – There are several writers’ guides available that contain valuable information. Besides name and address, guides list what type of books a publisher produces, how many books they produce each year, and how they pay. Some guides even list publishers by subject and age-level.
· Writing Newsletters and Magazines – Certain newsletters, such as Children’s Writer, and some magazines, such as SCBWI’s Kite Tales, will list current publisher needs. This will help you pinpoint likely targets.
· Internet access – In today’s fast-paced cyber world, most publishers have websites where you can view their book lists and catalogs. You can see if you like their style and if they produce the kind of books you would like to write. You will also be able to find up-to-date submission guidelines, including if they accept e-mail submissions.
· Library Card – After you find the publisher of your dreams, you need to study several of the books they’ve published. Your local library is a terrific (and free!) source.
These are just a few tools to get you started. Have fun!
Contributed by Catherine L. Osornio