|The StoryCub programs will showcase picture books as an entertaining story segment to engage young children. Each show also includes StoryCub’s message: “There is no better way to get kids excited about reading than through the interaction between a parent and a child”, followed by where the book can be purchased as directed by the author and illustrator. Each picture book story will be available for a limited run, and then the segment will rotate in and out of the programming schedule as time goes on. “The premise,’’ Swerdlick says, is to encourage parents to “take action” to download and view the program during the period it’s available, and to become regular viewers of StoryCub. Our objective is to introduce books to families in a new, engaging multimedia way, get them excited to buy the books they’ve discovered on our shows, and to share the experience of reading the book with their child.” Swerdlick, who has been working with publishers and authors since late January to secure permissions for use of picture books on StoryCub has more than 150 properties under contract.
Each StoryCub segment will feature the picture book story enhanced by music and special effects. Normally, production of a segment like this would cost between $2,000-$4,500 based on length, but during the StoryCub beta period, Swerdlick is willing to consider properties from SCBWI members without charging a development fee. Authors and illustrators who are interested can contact Dave Swerdlick via the StoryCub website, www.StoryCub.org and use the online submission form provided there to inquire. Also, note that you read about this in the SCBWI Bulletin “To Market” column, and it will be given priority consideration for complimentary review and development.
StoryCub is targeted at children ages one to eight. For older kids, Swerdlick and his daughters, ages 11 and 13, host a very popular podcast program called KidFriday, which is one of the most listened-to shows in the iTunes “Kids and Family” section. KidFriday is also the #1 technology podcast show for kids, and it specializes in coverage of technology and products of interest to tweens.
KidFriday has a very active listener base of more than a million from around the world, and the show features technology news, stories, and product reviews. According to Swerdlick, “The girls will often introduce new tech products and apps on the show, and we are open to having books submitted for consideration for review, and to use to tie-in with show topics.”
A third area Swerdlick is involved with is the exclusive partnership with the artistic management company, Great Knight Productions,www.greatknightproductions.com, an agency that manages and books artists, musicians and other entertainers and talent in the kids’ arena. Authors and illustrators interested in discussing the possibility of representation, or the creation of custom music for digital media such as book apps can make inquiries at hello@StoryCub.org. 5:6/12
In the music world, getting your songs played on the radio and listened to by millions of people leads to sales and recognition. What if picture book authors and illustrators could do the same for books? That’s the question Dave Swerdlick, a 25-year veteran of the music, e-learning and entertainment fields intends to answer with his newest venture, StoryCub. Currently in beta and open to submissions of new properties, StoryCub is licensing the rights to create what Swerdlick calls audio/visual books that will be read and performed for free digital broadcast viewing on multimedia platforms, including iTunes and YouTube for downloading onto iPhone, iPad, PC, Mac and other devices. 5:6/12