Tuesday, October 27, 2009

First Books Lowdown: My Unscientific Findings on New-Author-Friendly Publishers...

Every year since I've been blogging, I've put out a call for debut authors for my First Book feature and every year I post about which publishers are publishing the debut authors who contacted me. Here's the scoop for this year (all of which are in random order because I don't like to alphabetize)...

Publishers who are publishing one of the debut books in my pool:

  • Flux
  • Carolrhoda
  • Flashlight Press
  • Scholastic
  • Houghton Mifflin
  • Albert Whitman
  • Dutton
  • Blooming Tree
  • Holiday House
  • Pelican
  • HIP Books
  • Clarion
  • Bloomsbury
  • Feiwel & Friends
  • Candlewick
  • Raven Tree Press
  • Delacorte
  • Capstone

Publishers who are publishing two or more of the debut books in my pool:
  • HarperCollins
  • Walker
  • Putnam
  • Random House
  • Sourcebooks/Jabberwocky
  • Farrar, Strauss & Giroux
  • Simon & Schuster
  • Sterling
This year Putnam ties previous two-time winner HarperCollins at five a piece, so they each get a Friendly-to-New-Authors Gold Star!

Only a handful of the debut authors who contacted me said they have agents--I'm sure more do and didn't mention it--and some of those agented writers didn't get their agents until after the first book deal. I heard from plenty of unagented writers.

About half of the authors who contacted me are YA writers, the other half picture books, MG and chapter books, with PBs as the majority.

If you're among the YA authors (or even if you're not) check out Publishers Weekly's report, What Do Teens Want?, a survey of teen ├╝ber readers. Lots of statistics and charts! (I tweeted a link to this yesterday and was retweeted like crazy.)

Now back to the tough/fun job of deciding who to interview.

14 comments:

Ryan Ashley Scott said...

All very helpful information! Thank you.

I noticed Flashlight Press and immediately thought of I Need My Monster, which we picked up at the bookstore the other day. Love it!

Blythe said...

I noticed that Carolrhoda isn't on the list. It does welcome new authors--and unagented submissions (although the submission period is not year 'round). I think great things are happening at Carolrhoda.

JeannetteLS said...

Thanks... just knowing this is what you do out there gives me focus as I work on my own material. Thank you for posting here. It gives inspiration for those of us who are persevering in STARTING a career at any age.

Sheila Deeth said...

Fascinating, and really helpful. Thanks.

Alice said...

Year after year I never have a problem finding debut authors! It's exciting.

Jan Markley said...

My debut novel for middle grade readers Dead Frog on the Porch was published by a newer publisher Gumboot Books out of Vancouver. Check out their submission guidelines.

Fleur Bradley said...

Thanks for sharing this bit of research! Very interesting to those of us in the trenches.

I read that PW article earlier today--a 30+ percent growth in YA is projected by 2013! Now there's some good news.

Tara said...

That is definitely interesting news. Thanks for sharing!

Angie Frazier said...

I blogged about the PW article yesterday too. I'm a visual person, and loved the graphs they included :-) This list of yours is helpful, too. Thanks!

Alice said...

I'm s sucker fir graphs, too, Angie, and that PW piece is full of them.

Blythe said...

Thank you Alice. You are a lighthouse and a cup of sweet hot tea.

Suzanne Young said...

Cool post, Alice. It's interesting to me how many authors sell without an agent and which houses will look at your manuscript without one.

GeminiWisdom said...

Interesting and helpful. Although they mentioned 53% didn't like podcasted INTERVIEWS, it didn't say anything about podcasted NOVELS. I'd be interested to know what teens think about that.

Care said...

Thanks, Alice, for this deliciously "unscientific" list. It's an extra bit of welcome guidance!