Nancy's Books

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Publishing Trends/Calls for Submissions

What are editors and agents looking for in 2014? Let’s look at “what’s hot” and “what’s not” in the literary world of children’s publishing.

What’s HOT:
Mysteries. They have been for years and continue the trend.
Kid moves from comfortable surroundings to that of a distant relative
Picture books that extol the power of the imagination
Character-driven middle grade fiction
Funny, quirky characters
Nonfiction for Pre-K and Teen
Young Adult contemporary fiction
What’s NOT:
Sword-and-sorcery fantasy
Rhyming picture books
The market is saturated with books focusing on these “What’s NOT” topics. That doesn’t mean that your story will be rejected. If your manuscript is different enough, it will stand out. The recommended story for you to write is the story you want to write. Study the market, especially in the genre of your story so you can add your own unique twist to the tale.
Call for submissions for young writers:

One Story started with the idea of celebrating the short story form by showcasing just one short story per issue. That was twelve years ago, and the journey has been tremendous. So a year ago, the idea was hatched to start a second magazine--one geared solely to young adult fiction. That became One Teen Story

What’s particularly exciting about One Teen Story is that it’s the only regular venue out there for young adult short stories. That’s a tremendous thing. There are plenty of talented writers--both established and emerging--who are writing YA fiction in the short form, and they had no regular place to submit their work until OTS opened its doors. Now we’re seeing a lot of fantastic submissions and publishing wonderful short stories that have teen protagonists.  

Call for submissions for adult writers:
East of the Web is a slick site dedicated to new, previously unpublished fiction, as well as to classic short stories. East of the Web is keen to provide exposure for writers by offering them a place where their work will be seen and read in a high quality, respected setting. The site receives about half a million unique visitors per month, so successful submissions are likely to be viewed by more readers than in almost any other short story publication. In addition, the site receives attention from agents, the press, film makers, schools, universities and other publishers.

Note that our editorial standards are high and we do not publish all the submissions we receive. If necessary, editors work with authors of successful submissions prior to placing the story on the site.
Next week, I’ll resume my “Writing a Middle Grade Novel” series.

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