Anyone interested in breaking into the children’s or young adult market, take note: Today’s interviewee knows a lot about this business. Alice Pope is the editor of the Children’s Writer’s & Illustrator’s Market (CWIM), the foremost guide for these genres, published annually through Writer’s Digest Books. We’re thrilled she’s agreed to answer some of our questions about CWIM and the market itself. Enjoy!
Interview with Alice Pope
Q: For people who might not know, what is the CWIM? What makes it a valuable resource for children’s writers?
AP: CWIM is also known as Children’s Writer’s & Illustrator’s Market. It’s an annual guide for (obviously) children’s writers and illustrators seeking publication. CWIM lists hundreds of book publishers, magazines, agents and reps, contests, conferences, etc. It’s a great tool for writers because we offer the most up-to-date and complete information we can in a print format. We get our information straight from editors, agents, contest directors, etc.
We also put together a wonderful (in my humble opinion) collection of articles and interviews every year, which is the fun part of working on CWIM. There’s a lot of useful information between our covers. We include craft-y pieces, business-y pieces, and lots of info and advice straight from writers themselves, both first-timers and well-seasoned. I think it’s both instructional and inspirational.
Q: How long have you been the editor of the CWIM?
AP: The first edition of CWIM I worked on was the 1994 edition (as a production editor). I co-edited the 1995 CWIM and then, after much pestering of the higher-ups, fully took the helm for the 1996 edition. So something like 13 or 14 years. I have a long attention span. (And I really love my book.)
Q: How has the CWIM changed over the years?
AP: I suppose the biggest difference is the number of articles and interviews we include. When the book started in 1989, it was fewer than 180 pages long and included just two articles. The 2008 edition is 448 pages long and includes two dozen features and six “Insider Report” interviews. And (I hope) over the years the book has taken on my voice a bit—there’s a lot of me in it.
Q: How is this year’s CWIM (released in August) different from last year’s
release? [Read more…]