Advice for Young Authors on Getting Published

Suggestions for Getting Published
Getting published depends on finding a publisher who is looking for what you are presenting. Publishers have publishing plans that determine exactly what books they need for each new season—mysteries, adventure stories, travel books, cook books, etc. They also have target markets in mind—adults, young adults, middle-grade readers, or very young readers. An excellent resource for finding publishers that might be interested in your work is The Writer's Market, a book available in the reference section of most libraries.
The following is a partial list of book and magazine publishers that are particularly interested in publishing the work of young authors.
Cicada Magazine
Carus Publishing Co.
315 Fifth Street
Peru, IL 61354
Editor: Marianne Carus
This monthly literary magazine for young adults accepts young author submissions. See the Submissions page in the magazine for details.
Cicada also has an online forum for authors 14 and up called “The Slam,” where you can submit poetry and short-short stories for critique by other teens. View online at
Cricket Magazine
Cricket League
P.O. Box 300
Peru, IL 61354
Editor: Marianne Carus
This monthly literary magazine for children ages 9-14 includes a section called "Cricket League," which is a story, art, or poetry contest. See magazine for specific contests, or view online at
Creative Kids Magazine
Submissions Editor
Creative Kids
P.O. Box 8813
Waco, TX 76714-8813
A magazine by and for kids that publishes cartoons, songs, stories, puzzles, photographs, artwork, games, editorials, poetry, plays, and other creative work by kids ages 8-14. Check out their website for details.
Highlights for Children
803 Church Street
Honesdale, PA 18431-1895
A monthly educational magazine for children ages 2-12. Accepts children's work for special sections such as “My Favorite Books” and “Science Letters.” Also accepts children's black-and-white and color artwork. Check out their website for details.
Landmark Editions, Inc.
Contest for Students
Landmark Editions, Inc.
1904 Foxridge Drive
Kansas City, KS 66106
This publishing company publishes books by young writers exclusively. Check out their website for details about their contests.
New Moon: The Magazine for Girls and Their Dreams
New Moon: The Magazine for Girls and Their Dreams
2 W First Street #101
Duluth, MN 55802
Managing Editor: Joe Kelly
This magazine features original poetry, fiction, articles, and artwork from girls all over the world. Their website has details on how to submit.
Stone Soup
Stone Soup
Submissions Dept.
PO Box 83
Santa Cruz, CA 95063
A literary magazine written entirely by children. Accepts stories, poems, nonfiction, book reviews, and artwork by children up to age 13. A forum for budding artists and authors.
Young Voices Magazine
P.O. Box 2321
Olympia, WA 98507
A quarterly magazine publishing children’s stories, poems, art, and essays. Write for sample copy and guidelines.
Also check out this website for more places that accept submissions from kids:
Society of Children's Book Writers and Illutrators: Rocky Mountain Chapter
Resources for Young Writers and Illustrators
We hope that you keep writing and submitting your work to publishers. The thing to keep in mind is that getting published is a matter of being in the right place at the right time. Don't give up. And remember: Whenever you send something to a publisher, be sure to include a self-addressed, stamped envelope with enough postage to cover the cost of returning your work. Good luck!

Experts in China

My daily travails on the Internet today--on Wikipedia and the Encyclopedia Britannica--led me to find the notable Ban Zhao. Born in AD 45, Anling, Gufang [now Xianyang, Shaanxi province], China (according to the Encyclopedia Britannica), Ban Zhao was China's first female historian (according to Wikipedia). This was very unique in a country that, at the time, treasured boys over girls in most situations. Married at age fourteen, Ban Zhao was known as the Venerable Madame Cow. Cow? Fine, Cao.

While there is no definite information on Ban Zhao’s humble beginnings, I would assume that Ban Zhao first became interested in history for practical reasons. History seemed to be in Ban Zhao's blood. Her father, Ban Biao, had begun a history of the Han Dynasty (the Book of Han). The emperor commissioned Biao's son (and Ban Zhao's brother), Ban Gu, to complete the work, after their father's death. Ban Zhao helped her brother and took up the task after her brother was executed for an unrelated matter. According to the Encyclopedia Britannica,

"The resulting Han shu ("Book of Han") is one of the best-known histories
ever written and the model for all future dynastic histories in China."

As a widow and an "exemplary scholar" (Britannica), Ban Zhao was made a lady-in-waiting to the Empress. Ban Zhao was also into literature--she wrote numerous poems and essays, the most famous of which is the Nüshi (also spelled Nu Jie), or Lessons for Women. Lessons for Women is a volume on good behavior for women. The following quote, courtesy of the UCLA Center for East Asian Studies, is taken from Lessons for Women.

"I, the unworthy writer, am unsophisticated, unenlightened, and by nature
unintelligent, but I am fortunate both to have received not a little favor from
my scholarly Father, and to have had a cultured mother and teachers upon whom to
rely for a literary education as well as for training in good

Although Ban Zhao seems to have a low opinion of herself, she was one of China’s most prominent historians and women. She gave me an idea of the life of an educated woman in Ancient China; her collaborative effort on the Book of Han dished out, as Britannica said earlier above, "one of the best-known histories ever written"; Ban Zhao persevered throughout her lifetime and Ancient China.

"Ban Zhao." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2007.
Encyclopædia Britannica Online.
27 Sept. 2007

"Ban Zhao." Wikipedia. 2007.
Wikipedia Online.
27 Sept. 2007

“Lessons for Women: Ban Zhao.” UCLA. 2007.
UCLA Online.
27 Sept. 2007

Becoming an Expert: Part 2

Continuing my quest to become an expert, today I read about the profitable smuggling trade of Chinese antiques. According to the Economic Times at, powered by India Times, Hong Kong "has become the legitimate outlet for ill-gotten treasures of Chinese history, a legal market for legally obtained objects that can and do command large sums."

This event made me remember learning about Napoleon's soldiers invading Egypt and breaking off a Sphinx's nose. While the acts of breaking off a Sphinx's nose and trading valuable artifacts have considerable differences, the latter does seem reminiscent of the former.

While I am solidly against the illegal trade of Chinese artifacts and angry at the smugglers, I think that the Chinese government should take more measures with the policing of artifact smuggling, as well as more effort in programs to find artifacts before smugglers discover them.

Some new questions: What efforts does the Chinese government put into stopping smugglers? What areas in China are the most heavily populated with artifacts? From what dynasty have the most artifacts been found?

See you next time on Experts in China!

A Trip to Whole Foods

The familiarly large "Whole Foods Market" sign in green loomed ahead of us. How an unobtrusive, material green sign could remind me of an hour's worth of delicious samples and galloping wild through the aisles of delicious everything! We walked less-than-demurely inside to be greeted by large bouquets of flowers. My sister Adrianna and I snooped about the samples. There was something rather sneaky about eating samples.
Eating ice cream from Whole Foods seemed somehow more justified than from some other store. Perhaps it was because most were boldly emblazoned with "Organic." Perhaps it was because of Whole Foods' reputation as a healthy store gave ice cream this reputation as well. Perhaps it was because Whole Foods ice cream was most often very good. Simply looking at ice cream made me giddy with anticipation, thinking of mouthfuls of chocolate chocolate-chip...being in the ice cream section melted away all the day's worries, temporarily at least.
After all our shopping was done, I hopped back in the car, weighed down with all the bags to carry, but feeling as though I could levitate off the ground with satisfaction.

Becoming an Expert: Part 1

Today my topic is Ancient Chinese history. As part of my quest to become an expert on Ancient Chinese history, today I looked at

This website is the History Channel's look at Ancient China. Usually each section (i.e., the T'ang Dynasty) is brief and summarized, but it still gives well-rounded information about different time periods in Chinese history. This is a quote that raised some new questions for me:

"The Han emperors followed the Confucian principle of appointing men on the basis of merit rather than birth. Written examinations were adopted as a means of determining the best qualified people. In the late 2d century BC an imperial university was established, in which prospective bureaucrats were trained in the five classics of the Confucian school." What were the five classics? How long did you have to prepare for the written examinations? Who made the examinations? How long were the examinations, and what was the passing grade? I wish we had an exam for politicians to pass today.

Another interesting website is According to Bartleby's article, "there were three principal classes in Shang times: hereditary nobles and their families, commoners, and slaves (often sacrificially buried) who were largely war captives." Sacrificially buried sparked some questions for me--were they buried alive? dead? Either way, it's a little grisly-sounding. It makes me wonder whether China had any limits for its different methods of punishment or law enforcement.

Information on both of these two sites sometimes "overlap," going over the same subjects, but in general, you will find a nuanced choice of facts to showcase. I greatly enjoyed looking at both websites and I hope that readers will be able to leave comments about their own observations. Join me next time for Becoming an Expert: Part 2!

Focus of Expertise: Chinese History

Imagine yourself in a land of red-tiled buildings with sweeping roofs and gardens at every turn, your footsteps pressing the ground where the Emperor might have walked. Who could resist entering the Forbidden City of Chinese history? As my new "Focus of Expertise," I will be studying Chinese history and posting updates on my blog.

My topic will span some of the country's development through the years. I chose Chinese history because I (most ashamedly) know little about it, because China is a large and growing world power today, and because, of course, I am half-Chinese.

From various biographical and historical fiction readings, I have some understanding of Chairman Mao and the Cultural Revolution, as well as (less so, however) Ancient China.

The following questions are some that I hope to answer and that I hope possibly that some of my readers will be able to answer.

How and when was China settled by humans? How did the first emperor come to be the first emperor, and who was he? What was the Chinese people's attitude to different rulers over time?

Third-person perspective of my day

It was a day much like any other, except that it was a weekend day and Adora and Adrianna were anxious to line up in the kitchen, should they just barely miss the introduction to 60 Minutes. Adora ate very little but did cram a grape leaf most rudely into her mouth. She also took a fearsome swig of cranberry-raspberry juice before departing to lounge on the carpet.

Before this, the morning was bright and cheery and fresh. Sunlight streamed through the two windows in the bathroom/bedroom. Adora had slept here for the last two nights. The bed was of dark and creaky wood that gathered dust with its infrequent use. It groaned and squeaked as she rose sluggishly off of it to dress and put her hairpins in order atop her much mussed hair.

The family sat down to a large Sunday breakfast of waffles with sugar-powdered raspberries. Despite the splendor of the day outside, the house remained an inferno of papers and pants strewn all about, sharpener-shavings embedded in the carpet, pine cones littered about the downstairs floor...

All of this, of course, needed to be changed, and what a better day to ruin with the loud and droning Vroom-vroom-vroom of the vacuum than a beautiful weekend?

This is a parent's point of view.

The children begged to differ.


After a long time spent in cleaning--or, as the case might be, hiding from those who were doing the cleaning--the family set off (most exhaustedly) ambling away in the pill-buggish minivan for the week's shopping. Among some of the items bought:

Almond cheese

Jarlsberg cheese (much to the children's chagrin)

Monterey Jack cheese




Laundry detergent

Tissue paper
And so on.
Comfortably propped up in bed against a blue faux-fur monster of a pillow lay a girl preparing to turn off her computer...

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