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How to Publish a Children’s Book

Looking to publish a children’s book? Publishing a book is a dream come true for many creative writers. Some writers have vivid imaginations and their creativity flows as they write. But it can be an intimidating process for beginners because they find it difficult and daunting. However, with the right planning and execution, it can be a lot of fun and the effort can be well worth it! 

There is no better way to teach a child than through a book. Books can be read over and over again, and they can be used as tools to teach children habits, life lessons, the world around them, as well as how to read and write. Books are also an important source of entertainment. Most children love being read to or read on their own if they can.

Have you ever wanted to write a children’s book? Have you ever thought about it, but never really took the time to do it? If you have answered yes to both questions, then this post is for you! In this post, I will take you through the entire process of writing a children’s book.

Different Types of Children’s Book

Writing a children’s book can be a challenge for many reasons. There are so many books out there that it can be hard to stand out. In addition, there are so many different types of children’s books that it can be difficult to find the one that is right for you.

The first step to getting direction when wanting to publish a children’s book is to know what type of children’s book you want to create.

Wordless Book

This book is a kind of writing that does not use text to convey a message. It’s a form of poetry where the message is conveyed through visual images. These books may include some words like names or dates to give context to the illustrations, but it’s mostly an abstract story with no direct meaning. Children simply have to use their imagination to create messages from pictures. Wordless books are an art form, and you can find them in many different languages, cultures, and styles.

Alphabet Book

It is a collection of letters or symbols, objects, characters, and images arranged in a way that starts with a specific letter. It’s an educational program that helps children learn their ABCs. It often has colorful pictures of the letters to be entertaining and eye-catching. Alphabet books can also include tracing dotted or broken lines to form letters, helping kids to develop their writing skills.

Counting Book

This type of book is a tool that helps kids learn how to count and practice their number recognition skills. Counting books are perfect for kids because they offer them a fun way to learn numbers while making them feel good about learning math.

Nursery Rhyme Book

It is a type of book that has poems or songs written for children—usually an anthology of nursery rhymes that have been collected and put together to share the fun with their family or friends. It has very familiar lyrics to which children and adults can easily identify.

Poetry Book

This type of book is a compilation of poems that children can use to learn how to read. These books are usually divided into themes—such as nature, friendship, and animals. It helps children grow intellectually and emotionally, as well as expand their language development and understanding.

Interactive Book

This book is designed for kids to play with. There are many different types of interactive books, from board games to puzzles to word games to action games. It helps develop fine motor skills as books of this type encourage kids to manipulate objects in the book.

This also comes in digital format, which allows children to click or drag their fingers across the pages to make the characters move or zoom in and out to read different parts of the story. It allows them to be more immersed in the story and have more fun reading.

Fantasy Book

a boy reading a book

Fantasy stories are one of the most popular types of books for children. This book contains a work of fiction that has elements of magic and mythology and could be a series. It could be a new kind of fairy tale. It is a great way for children to learn more about the world around them and see how their imagination can be used in different ways.

Picture Book

This book contains simple stories with colorful pictures and bright illustrations but minimal text. It often has an emphasis on the narrative style. They are typically designed to be read aloud, with a beginning, middle, and end. Children love to look at pictures, and picture books allow them to explore their creativity in a new way.

Folklore Book

Books written about this are a way to share information about the oral traditions from any region of the world to future generations. It also includes a collection of tales about people who have lived in the past, places where they lived, interesting facts about these people, and even funny stories about them. It is written to teach children about their community and develop an understanding of the world around them.

How to Publish a Children’s Book

There are so many steps in producing a quality children’s book, and not all of them are obvious or easy to figure out. Here is an easy-to-follow, step-by-step guide to help any beginner or aspiring author create the book of their dreams.

Know Your Market

If you want to get your book published, knowing your target market is essential. Research what the children usually read and watch, how they spend their leisure time, the things that are helpful for them to learn, etc. You also have to know what ages are most likely to enjoy reading your book.

When writing a book for this kind of audience, you can think about the things you should consider, such as age-appropriate vocabulary, words, sentence structures, number of words, etc.

Knowing those things will help you write more effectively and create a book that resonates with them.

Get Your Manuscript Ready

Writing is a major undertaking! While writing a children’s book, keep in mind the story’s theme, tone, and style. Your project should have an age-appropriate setting, characters, conflict, and even the plot of the story.

Think of a way to make the story flow nicely, make sentences clear, and use the right words to express what you want to say. Also, make sure that it’s well-written, and not only entertains children but also teaches them something.

Edit, Rewrite, and Revise

When writing a children’s book, the first draft is not usually the final version. Here comes the editing process where an author improves his piece of writing and makes it adhere to his style guide.

Look for spelling mistakes, grammatical errors, character inconsistencies, and plot confusion. To do these, you have to look at your work from a fresh perspective. Let the draft sit for a while before picking it up to read it. Editing right after getting done with the initial writing often lead to missed opportunities to improve because you will be reading from what you remember, and not exactly what has been written. Giving yourself a little break from your book will allow you to read it objectively.

It’s important to edit the manuscript, not only for clarity but also to strengthen the book’s voice, tighten up the plot, and make it better overall.

Get a Professional Editor

Sure, you can write a book for your grandchildren and then spend the rest of your life in the shade of your grandkids’ bookshelf, but if you really want a book that is meant to be read by millions of kids, something that will actually make a difference in their lives, it is advisable to get help from a professional editor who has experience editing children’s books.

You will be surprised at how much a professional editor will enhance your manuscript. They have the expertise to not only make it readable but also provide you with constructive feedback to help you improve it.

Most authors hire editors to help them make progress. Although there will be an additional cost for you, it can be worth it. But of course, you can edit your manuscript yourself if you are confident with your skills.

Get Feedback From Beta Readers

You don’t want to be too proud to get feedback or too shy to share your ideas with people who will help you improve your work.

Critiques from people who are knowledgeable about the subject are important. To get feedback, all you need to do is to invite people who will read your manuscript. Ask your young niece or nephew to read it, or your friends and their children, or even booksellers and librarians, anyone who is included in the age range of your book or well-informed in that field.

Any comment or opinion they give about your manuscript is necessary, so write down notes about the things that worked and the things that didn’t, so when you edit your manuscript, you can use those comments to improve your work and avoid the mistakes you made during your initial process.

Plan the Book’s Format

The world of children’s books is vast. When planning a book’s format, it’s important to remember that it should match the theme of the story. The illustrations, colors, and other things should also be appropriate to the children’s age range and match the level of their literacy.

The words should be simple and succinct with minimal detail and plenty of pictures. Set bright and clear font size and correct line spacing so it can be understood by young children. Create a format that looks attractive and eye-catching for kids.

Illustrate Your Work

This is one of the most exciting parts of creating a children’s book. Before starting with the illustration process, decide what the most interesting part of the story is. Is there a character or several characters that need to be highlighted? Is there a primary scene that needs to be the focal point? This will help you determine what parts of the story should be necessarily illustrated.

Pictures in a children’s book help make the story bring to life. With this, a writer can convey a message such as kindness and generosity, and a visual representation and feelings of what’s happening in the story, which can help children understand the story better.

Remember to illustrate the important parts of the story and leave the rest to the child’s imagination.

Hire an Illustrator

If you’re not satisfied with your skills in drawing, you can hire an illustrator. You know that kids love creative and colorful things, and illustrators are trained for that. They can draw pictures that can attract the children’s interest. They can take your story and give it an artistic flair, and a fresh perspective on your story’s characters.

Whether it’s drawing the characters, or even their moods and personalities, an illustrator can add a certain level of artistry and authenticity to your character’s personality and depth.

The result can be a book with pictures that are not only beautiful but also effective in helping kids understand the text and encourage them to read.

Have Your Book Cover Designed

Illustrators usually work with a book cover designer to create a cohesive look for the inside of the book. An illustrator is responsible for creating the art that will appear on the inside of a book. A book cover designer creates the design for the front of a book, ensuring that is unique to the book and can make the book stand out.

Get Your Book Identifiers

ISBN

This is only for authors who will sell printed books. So if you are only looking to publish an ebook without plants of getting hard copies out in physical bookstores or online retailers (such as Amazon), you don’t need to do this. A printed book needs to have an ISBN to ensure that it is properly cataloged in libraries and bookstores around the world.

What is an ISBN? It is a unique identifier of a book given to the publisher when they submit the first copy of the book to the International Standard Book Number (ISBN) service. The number that is specifically given to your book is not transferable to other titles. You can purchase an ISBN from Bowkers—the official source of ISBN within the United States at www.ISBN.org. But if you’re from outside of the US, you can contact your country’s agency that operates ISBNs. An ISBN can be acquired anytime, even before the book is written or published.

Barcode

A barcode is associated with an ISBN. Each book barcode has a series of black bars on a white background that are in a specific pattern or layout and most commonly found on a book’s cover. Enclosed in this is the book’s information, such as the publisher, title, and weight.

It is used for ease of distribution of the books and also helps booksellers keep track of the books they have on hand.

Here are the top three free barcode generators you can use:

When selling paperbacks on KDP though, you won’t need to get your own barcode. Amazon handles this.

Copyright registration is not mandatory. It can be worth it to do it though to avoid infringement because it gives you legal protection to your work or book from being stolen or copied by others without permission.

Copyright registration differs from country to country, so check how you can do it where you’re at. Once registered, you will get a certificate that can be presented when you want to enforce your copyright. Again, this is voluntary and optional.

Publish Your Book

There are several different ways to publish books, but the two most common are traditional publishing and self-publishing. There are pros and cons to each, but choosing which one is right for you depends on your goals and abilities. Let’s discuss these two main options:

Traditional Publishing

Many children’s book authors use the services of a literary agent who negotiates deals with publishing houses to publish their work. This can result in a good quality book, as well as a small advance on royalties if it’s accepted for publication. The publisher will then handle the distribution and promotion of your book. They will also negotiate with your distributor to get your book into stores.

The upside is that this option offers some great exposure in a wide variety of places. The publisher will also take charge of a lot of things required in publishing the book (designing the book cover, having the illustrations drawn, getting a professional editor, marketing your book, etc.).The downside is that the publisher may offer to make some changes to your book (that you don’t want or to alter) so that it better fits their audience. Your royalties will also be limited to your deal with your publisher.

There’s a caveat as well if you want to be traditionally published. You need to find a publishing house that’s willing to publish your book. Often, this takes a lot of work, time, energy, and emotional tax. If you do not have an agent, you would need to write a query letter (lots of them actually).

What is a query letter?

This is sent by the author to a publisher to introduce himself and his book idea. In writing this letter, make it brief but comprehensive.

First, have a clear introduction of yourself, a few explanations why you write to them, and why they should consider publishing your book. Then add some descriptions about your content, the full title of it, the length of the book, and the best possible audience of it. In addition, you can add some of your works to show potential publishers what you are about and what makes you stand out from other authors.

A good rule of thumb is to focus on the key benefits of your book and use the most compelling words in the letter.

Self-Publishing

This is an option where you do not have to go chasing and begging for publishers to take your book. You are fully in charge of everything. In other words, you control every aspect of your project, including how your book is published and sold.

It is a great option for writers who want to retain control over their projects and not have to rely on a third party to tell them what they should be doing with their book. It also offers more creative freedom than traditional publishing.

All this freedom though means that you have to do a lot of work on your own or hire experts (i.e. marketers) and risk financially.

Final Thoughts

For many people, the idea of writing a book is intimidating. But it doesn’t have to be! Writing a book is an incredibly rewarding experience.

Take your ideas and turn them into a beautiful, inspiring story that will keep kids excited about reading. Publish a book that will make a difference in kids’ lives and influence the way they see themselves and the world in a positive way.

Take this article as a guide to help you go from reader to author.

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