illustrator's life
Comments 20

My list of 125 children’s books publishers + how to use it ;)

little cute dragon

As I mention in a post about Print on Demand, in order to gain money from your art, you can either create “what you want” and try to sell it somehow or you can present your portfolio to potential clients to get submission from them. In this post let’s concentrate on second way.

How to get children’s book illustration job

  • First step will be of course building kick ass portfolio (I mean strong one). I’ll be writing about what is needed there, (so as always stay tuned) but if you have one go to the next step.
  • preparing outreach list – look for publishers that you feel could hire you – based on books that they already published, their profile, your gut feeling. This is a quite a job! Sure, there are some directories online, Google exists, but over the year I learn that there’s always some companies hidden from you 😉 Maybe one with awesome books, but very little SEO skills, or those from country you didn’t consider. My personal list no. 1 contains publishers from countries where English is a official language, like US, UK or Australia, but also few from other countries, but with page in English. My very best client so far is from Korea. From the other hand, first few years of my career I was only submitting to Polish (I’m from Poland, in case you wonder) publishing houses – I’ve just haven’t thought, that someone in other country would like to work with me – they have illustrators in there, right? Thanks to Internet it doesn’t work that way and in most cases that doesn’t meter if you hiring illustrator from different state or different country. Only issue could be linguistic barrier, but if you reading this that means that you have many many options 🙂 List below might not be complete, but as I stated earlier – it’s my personal – I choose potential clients by reviewing directories, expositor lists in book fairs, visiting book stores, searching in Google, searching on Twitter, random finds. Publishers on this lists are not equally awesome – some of those are concentrated on educational materials, which are not that exciting usually (but not always! and that’s a good way to earn some $$$). There are small independent houses and huge ones like Penguin with many imprints. Bottom line is pick your own choice and go ahead.
  • and last step is to contact those awesome awesome publishing houses 🙂 I have a confession to make – I haven’t sent any emails(or mails) like this since April 2013 (yes 2 years ago), while you should (common knowledge) do this at least 2 times a year. Up to even 4, if you have something new to show. Why I did not do this you ask? Well, I was busy working and then I decided that my portfolio need total re-build and now I’ve just got an agent and now I’m not allowed to reach clients on my own. But, I can share my stuff with others right?

How to contact potential client right way?

  1. Go to publisher’s page and see how their books(or other products) look like – is it somewhat similar to your style? Maybe it’s not, but still you could fit because of general vibe or something. Maybe they are just started with terrible illustrators, but they are waiting for you? Don’t be to quick to dismiss company just because of ugly layout or let’s say, vintage style of their page.
  2. Find submission guidelines and stick to them religiously. Some publishing houses have this section really well exposit, but some did some pretty good job hiding it. Why I didn’t put links to this here? First of all, this is changing all the time and I do not want to have broken links on my blog. Lastly some of them didn’t put any, but they are that amazing I’d write them anyway 🙂 Second things is I strongly recommend familiarize with every client you write to.
  3. So, speaking of writing – sure, you can just put together one standard text and send same time to everyone. Something like “my name is X I’m an illustrator and I’d love to work with you, and here’s my portfolio” – you know what, I did that and that was stupid. Now, as I’m older and smarter 😉 my idea is to write specific message to every each one on your list. Write what you like about them, how you’re dreaming about being one of lucky group published by them etc. Of course it will change nothing if your style is unsuitable or your skills not good enough yet, but it will show that you are a person and in addition nice one:) And that’s definitely a business for nice people. dragon-donut

My personal list of children’s publishers.

1) Abdo Publishing
2) Abrams book
3) Alligator Books
4) Allen and Unwin
5) Albert Whitman
6) Annick Press
7) Andersen Press
8) Andrews mcMeel
9) Autumn Childrens books
10) Azbooks
11) Barefoot books
12) Barron’s Educational Series
13) Beaver Books
14) Berbay Books
15) BF Books
16) Bloomsbury
17) Blue Apple Books
18) Boxer books
19) BR Books
20) Brown Watson
21) Button Books
22) Buster Books
23) C4Ci
24) Candid Creation
25) Capstone
26) Caramel tree
27) Cheeky Monkey Publishing
28) Childs Play
29) Children Love To Sing
30) Chronicle Books
31) Ciranda Cultural
32) Collins
33) clever Factory
34) Crabtree
35) Cricket magazine
36) Compass Publishing
37) Curious Fox
38) Evan-Moor
39) Devrian Innovations
40) Duopress Books
41) Dream Land Publications
42) Dreamscape
43) Chicken House
44) Educat
45) English Egg
46) Epigram Books
47) eerdmans
48) Fat Fox Books
49) Floris Books
50) Flower Pot Press
51) Flying Eye Books
52) Frances Lincoln
53) Gibbs Smith
54) Gecko Press
55) Green Android
56) Goelette International
57) Hachette UK
58) Hachette US
59) Harpercollins
60) Red-Kite
61) Highlights
62) Hinkler Books
63) HayHouse
64) Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
65) Holiday House
66) Hogs Back Books
67) Ideals Books
68) Igloobooks
69) I Seek
70) I See Me
71) Jaimimage
71) Kids Books
72) Kumon
73) Lady Bird
74) Lion Hudson
75) Letterland
76) Little Tiger
77) Lake Press
78) Laurence King
79) Lee & Low
80) Learning Media
81) Mantra Lingua
82) Meadow Kids
83) Magination Press
84) Make Believe Ideas
85) Mathew Price
86) Milly and Flynn
87) Mighty Media Press
88) Miles Kelly
89) Mondo
90) New Frontier
91) Nosy Crow
92) North Parade Publishing
93) Octopus Books
94) Parragon
95) Priddy Books
96) Penguin
97) Peter Pauper
98) Pont Books
99) Puffin
100)Random House
101) Read & Play
102) Really Decent Books
103) Rockpool Childrens Books
105) Silver Dolphin
106) Simon and Schuster
107) Small World Creations
108) Sterling Publishing
109) Storytime Magazine
110) Studio Fun
111) Spicebox BookS
112) Sun Bear Publishing
113) Templar
114) Tapioca Books
115) The Book Company
116) Thames and Hudson
117) Top That
118) Tuttle Publishing.com
119) Qed Publishing
120) Usborne
121) Walker
122) WF Graham
123) World Publications Group
124) Workman
125) Yoyo Books

Well, few years ago I wished someone hand me this kind of list. Now, what I’d love to see is that this is a good, useful tool. So, please please please tell me, if it came handy, but also if you spot any errors. And if you that awesome maybe you have something to add here???

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20 Comments

  1. I have been preparing my own list. It takes ages!!! Thank you for that. I don’t know if it makes my job easier though. Now there are more publishers to discover! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • ha! Peachtree was on my list, I musted overlooked this one but I didn’t know Ripple Grove. Thank you so much! I’ll update my list with those. Awesome 🙂

      Like

  2. Hey there,
    Never really comment on social media, but just had to say thanks for a really great article. Very insightful and a Godsend to innumerable writers and artists trying to break into the industry.
    Thanks again,
    Cheers,
    Gary

    Like

  3. zircon1 says

    Hi Monika,
    A fine article that I found it useful. As a member of the SCBWI I find
    there list very useful.

    thanks,

    Paul

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: How to get a illustration job aka marketing for artists | love love my job

  5. This is a great list, I will be pinning it for later. Thank you! You could add Splashing Cow Books to your list as well – They’re accepting unsolicited author submissions for all of their imprints.

    Liked by 1 person

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