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How to Write a Children's Book and Get It Published Paperback – November 1, 2004

ISBN-13: 978-0471676195 ISBN-10: 0471676195 Edition: Third Edition

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How to Write a Children's Book and Get It Published + The Business of Writing for Children: An Award-Winning Author's Tips on Writing Children's Books and Publishing Them, or How to Write, Publish, and Promote a Book for Kids + Writing Children's Books For Dummies
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; Third Edition edition (November 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0471676195
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471676195
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #201,919 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Your one-stop guide to writing and selling books for children

Get the tools you need to:

  • Develop story ideas that work
  • Strengthen your writing skills
  • Improve your work habits
  • Write for different age groups
  • Look at your work critically
  • Submit proposals and manuscripts
  • Find the right publisher for your work
  • Understand and negotiate contracts
  • Work with agents and editors
  • Join the writing community

Do you dream of becoming the next J. K. Rowling? Are you excited about writing for children but have no idea how to begin or where to send your material? Now, respected children's writer Barbara Seuling gives you the essential steps to getting published in the competitive, exciting world of children's literature.

From finding story ideas and creating character sketches to plotting, writing dialogue, editing, and revising your work, you'll learn how to complete a manuscript and prepare it for submission. Whether you want to write picture or chapter books, fiction or nonfiction, poetry or plays, Seuling helps you master the different genres and capture a child's interest and imagination, from the early years to young adult. Her fully revised guide also covers the major developments in book publishing, including vital information about using the Internet to research the market and contact publishers. Seuling even discusses recent successes such as the Harry Potter series, as well as the growth of Amazon.com.

Complete with updated lists of writing organizations, marketing information, and recommended reading, this is the only guide you need to start writing, get published, and touch the lives of children.

About the Author

BARBARA SEULING is the author and illustrator of more than sixty books for children, including the popular chapter book Oh No, It's Robert and its sequels, as well as picture books including Winter Lullaby, illustrated by Greg Newbold, and Whose House?, illustrated by Kay Chorao. She worked for nine years as a children's book editor for major publishing houses. Seuling is also the director of The Manuscript Workshop in Vermont.

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

I would recommend this book for anyone thinking of writing for children.
Jeffrey Leeper
The author is very helpful and practical with her advice on how to write a children's book.
valerie a lally
This book was so helpful to me in submitting a manuscript to publishers.
Margaret A. Brown

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

95 of 97 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey Leeper on December 31, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This book is divided into five parts. Each part is designed to help you in progressing towards the publishing of a book/play/poem/story for children. This is not a quick process. The key ingredient to this book being successful is that the book shows you what is involved.
In the first section of the book, Seuling discusses the world of children's books. This will give you an idea of the history of children's books and help you become familiar with the lingo.
In the second and third sections (Developing Your Ideas and Writing Your Book, respectively), she talks about some of the pitfalls (she calls sabotage) and talks about what is required for different kinds of books (for instance, what is needed for an Easy Reader versus a Chapter Book). To help you, the author includes the titles of books that best exemplify the kind of book she is discussing. Now, you can check out the book and see the example for yourself.
In the fourth and fifth sections (Selling Your Book and A Publisher in Your Future), she explains how the publishing field works. With this information in hand, you can make your submission more professional and increase your chances of getting a contract.
For each chapter in the book, she summarizes the key points and gives you "assignments" which will help you internalize the material and become an expert. The only problem with the assignments is that there is no right or wrong answer. You will need to assume that you are doing it correctly. If you follow the assignments, however, you will learn a lot.
Most importantly, Seuling has appendices that list a wealth of information on helping you become a successful writer for children. If nothing else, the book is worth it for those lists (things like marketing information, editorial services, references, and reviews of children's books). I would recommend this book for anyone thinking of writing for children.
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83 of 89 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 21, 1997
Format: Hardcover
It may not have been the author's explicit intent to discourage new authors form entering the field of children's literature but, it is certainly one of the likely effects that this book will have on its readers. Its hard to believe that this book which is filled with ambiguous and conflicting advice was written by a former editor. The author seems to be interested in showing off erudite sentence structure at the expense of clarity throughout the book. In addition her credibility is drawn into question has she frequently offers conflicting advice regarding format and lay out for submissions. Beyond problems of readability and consistency, the tone of the book is so discouraging that it seems to be the product of an embittered experienced professional out on a crusade to "fix" all of the errors hat she had to endure over the years. Also note that although the book was first published in 1984 and revised in 1991 all of the technical submission advice is geared towards a typewriter. This is to me further evidence of either the author's lack of attention to relevant information or, evidence of an antediluvian attitude. I recommend that you avoid this bitter and confusing advice manual.
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127 of 139 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 30, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Even though this is the revised edition, I have been told by professionals in the children's book industry that the information I got from this book is out-of-date and incorrect.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Annie Oakley on January 22, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Are you thinking that you MIGHT want to be a children's writer? Maybe you have a story that the family loves but are wondering what to do next. This book is a great place to start. Ms. Seuling gives step-by-step instructions for categorizing your work, editing, formatting the manuscript and deciding where to send it. Great references for related information in the back, too. This is not a perfect book for someone already on the way to being published, but it's a great little book for beginners.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Arbutusrose Hermann on June 5, 2001
Format: Hardcover
How to Write a Children's book and get it published by Barbara Seuling is a very informative book for those who are just starting in the business of children's books--Although the book has a brief chapter on illustrating children's books, this section could have been expanded to be more useful to both those of us who are illustrators and those who write and illustrate their own books.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 24, 1998
Format: Hardcover
After reading this concise and highly informative guide on how to break into the children's book market, I immediately sought online tutoring from this frank and knowledgeable author-editor in one of her AOL classes. In ten words or less: if you want to get published, first go to Barbara.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By C Mulloy (booferkdh@aol.com) on March 20, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Recently I have read approximately five books on writing for children. I found Barbara Seulings book to be the best of the lot. She realistically portrays the difficulty in breaking into the children's market in the '90s, yet she encourages the reader and provides a wealth of helpful information to do just that. Barabara Seulings book is easily readable for a reference book and one that anyone interested in writing for children today should have in their personal library. Good job Ms. Seuling -
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By NewMaya@aol.com on March 20, 1998
Format: Hardcover
This book was and is a concise account of the how-tos of the Childrens Picture Book world. From writing, to submission process, everything a would-be CPB author/illustrator needs is in here.<P> In addition to her book, I have taken her AOL online class and found her to be informative, organized, and a concise constructive critic. It was her book and her course that enabled me to successfully complete my first picture book.<P> I highly recommend this book for anyone wishing to publish picture books.
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