|Learning the Ropes of PR
Working With Publishers
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Tools of the Trade
- Is the trend of books in verse is finished?
- Can I purchase photos off the internet to use for illustrations?
- How can I get a new publisher to look at my book after it went out of print?
- How do I determine how much to pay an illustrator; or should I leave the illustrations to a potential publisher?
- Is it important to have a literary agent?
- Selling a story as a picture book if it had already been published in a magazine
- Is it necessary to get a literary agent to represent one’s work if one has not been published yet?
- I have written six children’s poetry books, each based on a particular theme. I am ready to submit to editors and agents. What’s the best way to proceed?
- FEATURE TOPIC: Finding and keeping your dream literary agent
- Do I need to get permission, or to pay, for mentioning song titles and recording artists in my book?
- I am writing a novel that is set in a real place. All of the characters and events are fictional. However, I do refer to an actual event and the actual person in the event is still alive somewhere. As an example, if the book is about a boy who does some mountain climbing, and one path on the mountain has (actually) been named after a real person because of a (non-fatal) accident that person had there, is there any way I can include these in my novel? Does it matter that tours of the area regularly include the name of the path and the story of the person? Does it matter if the mountain is in a different country (which might have different laws)? Does it matter if I don’t say the person’s name? or only a first name? If the event was reported in a news source, are the published facts considered public?
- Is it customary when an agent represents an author to obtain the author’s social security number so that a separate bank account can be set up for the author? If so, how soon would the agent need this info from the author before he’s negotiated a deal with a publisher?
- I am using old Christmas cards to illustrate a children’s book. How do I trace an illustrator if the card is only marked U.S.A. or is a company that may be out of business now. What are the copyright laws for using greeting card art?
- I realize that if I want to use song lyrics in my writing (a novel) I will need permission, but does the same go for mentioning Aunt Jemima pancake mix or Air Jordan sneakers?
- I am interested in finding for-hire writing assignments. How do I get started?
- How do I find an agent interested in representing stories in verse?
- How would a young writer publish a book they have been working on?
- I have written an adaptation of a popular Jewish folktale. Should I send it to general publishers first and if it is rejected, then go to Jewish publishers, or should I send it simultaneously to both?
- Several of my book submissions were never acknowledged or returned, and I have sent letters withdrawing my work from consideration. Is this sufficient to protect me legally?
- Can I take a well-known person’s name (living or non-living) and invent a take-off on that name?
- I write for adults as well as children and I’d like to keep these very separate by using a pen name for my adult writing. What are the legalities and financial implications of that?
- I have drafted several picture book stories using the same character. Should I submit multiple manuscripts, or do I submit only one manuscript (perhaps with a mention of other stories for a series)?
- I discovered that a Science Fiction editor and translator share my name. Should I consider this when writing in the children’s trade book industry, or are the genres diverse enough for me to use my legal name?
- I do research and writing for my local Historical Society. While poring over books on local history I’ve found some interesting stories about families who lived in this area some 100 years ago. Can I take these actual events and write them into story form, or am I infringing on someone’s rights?
- As a writer of children’s poetry, I’d welcome the opportunity to submit writing samples to anthologists. How can I find out who is in the process of preparing children’s poetry anthologies and would accept writing samples?
- How do I find out the postal rate for countries I would like to send query letters or manuscripts to?
- What is the appropriate grade of paper to use for submitting manuscripts?
- I signed a contract with my publisher and am overdue on receiving my first payment, which should have been received within a 45-day period. I’d like to know if they’re in breach of contract and how I should proceed.
- I’ve (written – if that’s the correct term) a practically wordless children’s picture book manuscript that I want to submit to publishers. Since I cannot illustrate the few words of text it contains, can you please tell me the professionally appropriate way to submit my manuscript?
- I have written a young adult novel with a historical background of the Catholic faith in Japan and am trying to identify publishers who might be interested.
- Do you have any advice, for authors looking to acquire an agent?
- I am doing a non-fiction book for children and wish to know how to go about getting permission to use old photographs and quotes. Do I need permission in writing?
- Do you know of any children’s publishers who use photography in picture books?
- What are copyright rules regarding using traditional tales for books?
- How can a writer determine whether royalty or purchase (possibly with advance) will prove most advantageous?