30 Children’s Publishers Accepting Unagented Work

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If you are looking for a place to get started when submitting your work, here is a list of Children’s Small Press Book Publishers still accepting unsolicited manuscripts. Please read their guidelines thoroughly, and make sure your submissions include a cover letter, a grammatically correct manuscript, your contact information, and the word count of your submission.

  1. Albert Whitman & Company has been publishing award-winning children’s books since 1919. Albert Whitman’s special interest titles address subjects such as disease, bullying, and disabilities. Albert Whitman and Company currently has an open submissions policy. They read and review un-agented manuscripts and proposals for picture books, middle-grade fiction, and young adult novels. Novellas accepted. Email submissions only. 
  2. Annick Press accepts submissions of picture books, middle-grade fiction, YA fiction, and non-fiction for kids of all ages. “Our stories feature contemporary themes (even if the setting is historical) and aim to instill kids with the joy of reading.”
  3. Arbordale “Our mission is to get children excited about science and math through fun-to-read picture book stories. We are primarily looking for fiction manuscripts with non-fiction facts woven into the story, although we will also consider some non-fiction stories. In every manuscript, we look for a “cuddle factor” that will make parents and children want to read it together.” 
    Submit manuscripts about: physical science, engineering, earth science. science or math manuscripts with a cultural/social studies connection, manuscripts for Pre-K3 to kindergarten-age children. Manuscripts written in Spanish by bilingual authors (English and Spanish) are accepted. Please send your manuscript in Spanish and English, and all accompanying materials only in English. Authors and illustrators living in the US and Canada only.
  4. August House focuses on world folktales and storytelling. Submissions are by regular post only. Please review their guidelines before contacting them.
  5. Capstone publishes both fiction and nonfiction books for struggling and reluctant readers. They have four imprints and three separate divisions with over 3,000 books in print. Most of Capstone’s books are produced in-house, but they are interested in receiving WORK FOR HIRE manuscripts and illustration samples.
  6. Charlesbridge publishes both picture books and transitional “bridge books” (books ranging from early readers to middle-grade chapter books). Nonfiction books focus on nature, science, social studies, and multicultural topics. Fiction titles include lively, plot-driven stories with strong, engaging characters. 
    As of September 2015, they accept young-adult novels for consideration. 
    “Due to the high volume of submissions, we respond only to manuscripts of interest to us. All other manuscripts will be recycled. If you have not heard back from us after three months, you may assume we do not have a place for your project.”
  7. Dawn Publications accepts creative nonfiction manuscripts for children that relate to nature and science. “We are currently looking for picture books for grades kindergarten through 4th grade. Our books must have a strong early elementary science curriculum connection.” 
  8. Flashlight Press publishes books for 4 – 8-year-olds. Books must be under 1000 words, have a universal theme, and deal with family or social situations. 
  9. Free Spirit publishes nonfiction books and learning materials for children and teens, parents, educators, counselors, and others who live and work with young people. They do not publish fiction. Proposals to be considered must be sent by mail (not by fax or email). Include a cover letter, your relevant expertise, résumé, chapter-by-chapter outline, two sample chapters, and market analysis.
  10. Holiday House specializes in hardcovers, from picture books to young adult, both fiction and nonfiction for ages four and up. They do not publish mass-market books, including pop-ups, activity books, sticker books, coloring books, or licensed books. Submissions: Holiday House only responds if they are interested in publishing your manuscript. Please send the entire manuscript, whether submitting a picture book or novel. They do not accept submissions by email or fax. 
  11. Heartdrum is an imprint of HarperCollins focusing on Indigenous stories that reflect Native people whose Nations are located within the borders of what’s now called the United States and Canada. “We are open to considering picture book, chapter book, middle grade novel, and young adult novel manuscripts as well as middle grade and young adult nonfiction manuscripts, and both poetry and graphic novel formats. Writing that reflects young protagonists and/or youth-related topics are welcome. Our emphasis will be on contemporary, near histories and/or futuristic works, including realistic fiction and genre fiction.” 
  12. Incentive Publications by World Book produces supplemental resources for student use and instruction and classroom management improvement materials for teachers. “Incentive specializes in supplemental resources for middle grades students and teaching strategies for grades K–12. More than 400 titles are available through over 2,000 retailers and distributors (including Barnes & Noble) nationally and internationally—and now titles are also available in e-book format online.”
  13. Just Us Books publishes children’s books that celebrate the diversity of Black history, culture, and experiences. Just Us Books is currently accepting queries for chapter books and middle reader titles only. Please send a query letter pitching us your manuscript, a 1-2 page synopsis of your manuscript, 3-5 sample pages of your manuscript, a brief author bio that includes any previously published work, self-addressed stamped envelope.
  14. Kane Miller is expanding its picture book, chapter book, and middle-grade fiction lists. They are interested in all genres (mystery, fantasy, adventure, historical, etc.). Please send either the complete picture book manuscript or a synopsis and two sample chapters of your fiction work. Electronic submissions accepted.
  15. Lee & Low Books is a children’s and young adult book publisher focusing on diversity. As of 2012, Lee & Low Books has published more than 650 titles in hardcover, paperback, lift-the-flap, and board book formats. Many titles have also been adapted for Spanish editions. They publish 12-14 titles per year.

  16. Levine Querido Founded in 2019 by Arthur A. Levine, Levine Querido is an independent publisher of children’s books. Picture Books: Query letter + the full text; Novels: Query letter + the first two chapters + synopsis; Other: Query letter + five-page samples (five poems, five nonfiction pages, etc.); Illustration: Three sample illustrations via attachment, and links to online portfolios. Do not send full manuscripts. Submit work through Submittable.
  17. Mighty Media Press publishes children’s books, mostly picture books but also those aimed at middle-grade readers. On average, they only publish six new books annually. Read guidelines here.

  18. Pajama Press publishes picture books—both for the very young and for school-aged readers, as well as early chapter books, novels for middle grade readers, and contemporary or historical fiction for young adults aged 12+. PP also published nonfiction. Pajama Press is looking for manuscripts from authors of diverse backgrounds. Stories about immigrants are of special interest. Not currently open for submissions from writers. Check Submittable for their next open reading period.
  19. Pants On Fire Press publishes picture, middle-grade and young adult books. They are always on the lookout for Action, Adventure, Animals, Comedic, Dramatic, Dystopian, Fantasy, Historical, Paranormal, Romance, Sci-fi, Supernatural and Suspense stories. Pants on Fire is acquiring Chapter Books, Middle-grade and Young Adult fiction. 
  20. Pelican Publishing Company publishes both adult and children’s books. A small regional press in New Orleans Louisiana that publishes mainly regional titles.
  21. Penny Candy Press publishes kids’ books that reflect a wide range of authors and illustrators from around the globe. “We are not interested in perpetuating a publishing culture that ALL authors, illustrators, and readers do not have access to. While we will not exclude anyone from our catalog, we focus on underrepresented, unheard, or forgotten voices as part of our mission.” They are open to submissions from January to March. 
  22. Ripple Grove Press is a new family-owned publisher based in Massachusetts. They are seeking picture books. Read submission policy. Temporarily closed to submissions.
  23. Sleeping Bear Press is a publisher of quality children’s books. They specialize in picture books and middle-grade novels. They accept both fiction and nonfiction submissions. 
  24. Sourcebooks is a small publisher located in Sacramento, CA. They publish for both children and adults. They are not open for submissions with the exception of works that directly promote diversity, equality and inclusion.
  25. Sterling Children’s Books publishes both fiction and non-fiction, including classics, picture books, joke books, middle grade, and novelty formats—as well as books for babies and toddlers. Our Flash Kids imprint publishes workbooks and flashcards for preschool, elementary, and middle school students in essential curriculum areas such as reading, math, writing, test preparation, and much more. Additionally, our Sterling Teen imprint publishes fiction and non-fiction across all genres and formats. Submission Guidelines are on their contact page.
  26. Red Deer Press is a Canadian company that publishes books for children across the ages, from picture books to young adult fiction and non-fiction. Submissions should be sent through regular mail.
  27. Tilbury House focuses on nonfiction picture books that appeal to children (ages 5 – 10) and their parents. They will also consider nonfiction chapter books and graphic nonfiction for early readers (ages 8 – 13), and nonfiction for young adult readers (YA, age 12 and up)
  28. Tradewind is a Canadian company that publishes books for children and young adults. Tradewind does not accept novels by non-Canadian authors unless they are chapter books to be illustrated. 
  29. Versify is looking for “books that edify, electrify, and exemplify the wonders and woes of childhood.” They accept YA novels, MG chapter books, picture books, and graphic novels. 
  30. Workman Publishing is an independent publishing company that publishes adult and children’s books as well as calendars. Please note that Workman Publishing encompasses several imprints: Workman Publishing, Algonquin Books, Algonquin Young Readers, Artisan Books, The Experiment, Storey Publishing, Timber Press, duopress, Familius. Each imprint publishes a different style of books. Please familiarize yourself with the titles and submission guidelines for each imprint so you know that you’re submitting your work to the imprint most likely to publish it.                                                                   

If you liked this post be sure to check out my other market list 22 Children’s Magazines that Pay.

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  1. Hello,
    My 13 year old granddaughter writes poetry and is submitted two poems to a contest. Are there any book publishers that accept books of poetry?

    1. Hi Kris! Thanks for commenting! Usually you have to be a more established writer with other books out before they will consider publishing a whole collection of poems. Some small press publishers might be interested though, and self publishing is always an option.

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