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Posted by Alice, January 21, 2021

An open call for submissions from writers and writer-illustrators of colour

Today I’m very happy to announce a call for open submissions from writers and writer-illustrators of colour.

Here at Nosy Crow, we publish brilliant and talented authors and illustrators from a diverse range of backgrounds. But we want to increase that diversity. It’s incredibly important to us that children are able to see themselves in the books we publish, and also that our books allow children to experience worlds and hear voices that are not like their own. And these worlds and voices need to be authentic. If you’re a writer or writer-illustrator of colour, we need your picture book stories!

Please send no more than three picture book texts to [email protected], along with a synopsis of each story and a short biography in the body of the email. The window for submissions is for a limited time only, from the 21st January 2021 to the 18th February 2021. I’m afraid any submissions received after this time will be deleted. If you miss the deadline, don’t despair; we would like to run the open submissions window again in the future.

With the help of my colleagues in the picture book team, I will review all submissions sent within this window. We are hoping for a large volume of submissions, so it may be a few weeks before we get back to you. If you haven’t heard from us by the 31st of April 2021, I’m afraid your submission has not been successful.

It’s completely free to submit, and we welcome submissions from around the world, but they must be in the English language and unpublished anywhere in the world. Writers and writer-illustrators must be aged 18 or older.

Picture book texts should be no more than 1,000 words each and submitted as a Microsoft Word document (or similar document that can be opened in Microsoft Word) or Adobe PDF document. They should be sent as an email attachment (no paper submissions).

If you are a writer-illustrator, texts can be accompanied by your artwork. PDFs should be no more than 5MB in total. If you’re a writer-illustrator, please also include a link to your website and/or social media where we can view more of your artwork.

If you’re not a writer-illustrator, you don’t need to include any illustrations. Feel free to include illustration notes if needed, but keep these to a minimum.

Don’t worry if you forget to attach something to your email. Please resend the entire submission with an alert at the top to let us know to delete your earlier submission.

If you’re new to writing picture books, we strongly advise you to immerse yourself in the genre and read as many current picture books as you can before submitting your texts to us, in order to give you a richer understanding of what makes a great story. Texts should be suitable for children aged around 3–5 and can be in rhyme or prose. They can feature human characters, animal (or fantasy!) characters, or a mixture – and they can be about anything you can imagine!

If you have any questions, email [email protected] – please don’t ring our office. I’m looking forward to hearing from you, either via your agent, or directly from you if you don’t have one.

Good luck!

Alice Bartosinski

Senior Commissioning Editor, Picture Books