By Rana DiOrio, Founder and Chief Executive Pickle of Little Pickle Press
July 27, 2016
This past June our Acquisitions Committee generated our forward production calendar through 2019. We identified some gaps that we would like to fill, and it would delight us to do so with stories written and illustrated by Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators members. Setting that as our intention, and in anticipation of SCBWI’s Annual Conference in Los Angeles, CA, here is what we are seeking currently . . .
The common denominators. All of the manuscripts we select involve conveying meaningful messages to children or youth. They catalyze conversations between parents and children, teachers and students, about the topics that matter most to the generation of children we are shaping today. The manuscripts are well written, thought-provoking, progressive, fresh, distinctive and, if a picture book, lend themselves well to not only illustration but also to extrapolation into other mediums, such as interactive eBooks, book apps, and animated shorts, as well as related products, such as toys, games, notecards, etc.
The heart of the matter. At present, we are most interested in receiving young adult submissions. What subject matters are most interesting to us at this point? They include (in no particular order and not exclusively):
• Kindness—the power of it
• Dare To Be Different
• Choices: It’s Not All Black And White; Most of Life is Gray (Moral Compass)
• Political Awakening: the choices made by people in power effect us all
• Racism—the deleterious effects of it
• Complex Family Structures
• Anti-Princess Themes
• Creativity—the importance of it, fostering it, etc.
• Leadership and/or Entrepreneurship
• Divergent (vs. Convergent) Thinking
• Systems Thinking
• Responsibility/Accountability/Moving Beyond Gen M Thinking
• Taking Care of Yourself and Your Community/Planting the Seeds of Being a Locavore
• Understanding Mental Health—Yours and Your Loved Ones
• Being The Change You Seek In The World
What we don’t want are books with hidden messages to grownups. We want books that convey true messages to children and youth. It is also worth mentioning that we do not shy away from controversial subjects, and we are open-minded about the genres and literary vehicles employed to convey the messages.
First things first. As you consider submitting your manuscript, please learn a little more about Little Pickle Press and our young adult imprint, Relish Media. We are about to re-brand our imprints—Little Pickle Stories for 0 to 10 year olds, Big Dill Stories for 11 to 14 year olds, and Relish Stories for 15+ year olds. Our submissions platform is powered by Authors.me and sets forth our submissions guidelines here. Consider liking Little Pickle Press and Relish Media on Facebook. Please also consider following @LPP_Media and @Relish_Media on Twitter.
Our selection process. Once we receive your submission, our First Reader designated for the target age range of your work reads it within four months and sends the Acquisitions Committee his or her preliminary thoughts. If the First Reader has a favorable opinion of the manuscript, then we have another member of the Acquisitions Committee read it. If the second member of the Acquisitions Committee likes it, then we have a Junior Reader (a reader in the intended age group) read it. If the Junior Reader likes the manuscript, then it gets presented during the next acquisition meeting. If at any point during our process, a team member thinks that the work does not fit for us, then we let you know. Our Acquisitions Committee will next meet to consider submissions on November 10, 2016.
Thanks for your interest. I kindly thank you for your interest in Little Pickle Press and Relish Media and for reading this post. If you choose to send us a submission, thank you also for considering us as your publisher. I know from experience all that you have gone through to get to this point, and I respect and honor you for it.