Thursday, August 21, 2008

The First Books Publishers Lowdown...

This week I've been happily perusing a formidable stack of emails from debut authors (still deciding on who to interview for First Books), and now it's time for my annual lowdown--my unscientific findings regarding which publishers are friendliest to new writers based on the 75-ish emails I received.

This year, the following publishers/imprints were sited by more than one debut author:

  • Delacorte (consistently debut author friendly)
  • Dial
  • Feiwel & Friends
  • Farrar, Straus & Giroux
  • Greenwillow
  • Henry Holt
  • Houghton
  • Hyperion
  • Little Brown
  • Putnam
  • Razorbill
  • Simon & Schuster
  • Scholastic
  • Viking
  • Walker
And this year's Most-Friendly-to-New-Writers Crown goes to (for the second year in a row):
  • HarperCollins (publishing five of the debut authors I heard from)
This year's batch of first-timers are overwhelmingly YA authors--just about half. The other half is rounded out by slightly more middle grade authors than picture book authors and illustrators.

And only a handful of the new writers who emailed me mentioned having agents. I did not ask, however--I am sure more than five of you have agents. Don't you like your agents, new writers? I kid--I know you do! If you didn't think to mention them to me, I'm sure you remembered them in your acknowledgments and you'll thank them when you win awards. (Please don't Chad Lowe your agent.)

8 comments:

Jewel said...

Ha Ha....well here I am with a completed? product a first timer and on my first 'reach out' I have found valuable information. Gotta like that. Cant wait to check out this book, hope its available at the library as a reference item at least.
My daughter and I developed this project last year and have finally reached a FINAL. We have not submitted it any further than our own family members, but the response is favorable.
We were searching for places to begin..thank you for this resource...found our way here and hope to find good company.
I do have a couple of questions....
How do you know which age group your work fits in?
Or who makes that determination?
Does a publisher classify as they see fit?

Thanks
Jewel

Jill Fales said...

Thank you for the valuable info!

After having 4 kids in 7 years, My "baby" is three and I have come up for air. First item on the agenda - Write that book!

www.bookwormdirt.blogspot.com

Lenore said...

YAY HarperCollins!

J.H. Everett said...

Alice,

It was so nice to meet you at SCBWI (through Mac McCool/ Christian). I am sorry that we did not get more time together. I must say that Christy Ottaviano/ Henry Holt have been amazingly good to me as a new author/illustrator. They have bent over backwards to make sure that my agent and I have everything answered to our satisfaction. Christy even made an effort to visit with me and my co-writer when she was in California at the ALA. I look forward to keeping in touch. Cheers! Ev - jheverett@mac.com

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