making a bookA list of general sources and organizations for both newcomers and established writers and illustrators.


The Basics
Are you absolutely brand-new to this and aren’t sure where to start?

“I Want to Write Children’s Books Too!” by Kelly Carey on 24 Carrot Writers has a great three-point plan of action for turning writing dreams into reality:

Josh Funk’s Guide to Writing Picture Books has 12 concise, easy-to-navigate lessons on the picture-book writing journey. Many lessons also apply to chapter books, middle grade, and YA.

This post on Harold Underdown’s The Purple Crayon provides a great short orientation of what to expect on your journey to publication.
This next post, on the same site, uses a fun quiz format to walk you through what you need to know to get started.

Confused by terms you’ve never heard? Check out the Writers’ Rumpus Glossary of Publishing Terms.

The intro to this site reads: “Welcome to KidLit411! Are you writing a children’s book? Well, you’ve come to the right place! One website, with all of your favorite sources in one place!” It’s like an extended, illustrated version of the page you’re reading right now.

Absolute Write & Absolute Write Water Cooler
A forum in which writers compare notes and experiences on agents, agencies, and publishers.
Main Site:
Water Cooler (Forums):

Children’s Book Insider
Monthly magazine and associated CBI Clubhouse online community and resources.

The Institute for Children’s Literature
A well-established and well-regarded organization that provides correspondence courses for children’s writers.

Money-Saving Guide for Authors and Writers
A general guide for all writers (not only kidlit) with information on organizations, scholarships, career options, and others things you might not even know you need to know yet! Thanks to reader Chelsea from Alabama for sharing this one. 🙂

Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI)
Professional association for children’s writers and illustrators. Connections to other writers and illustrators in your area. Access to online communities and updated resources. Two major conferences each year plus regional activities across U.S. and internationally. Membership includes THE BOOK: The Essential Guide to Publishing for Children, updated annually, and access to an incredible community of helpful writers & illustrators on the Blueboard message & chat forum.
SCBWI’s Blueboard, A Message & Chat Board:

Publisher’s Lunch / Publisher’s Marketplace
The latest news in the publishing world across all genres. Free subscription to daily general e-news and once-weekly announcements of select book deals. Paid subscriptions to exclusive content, comprehensive announcements of deals, and Publisher’s Marketplace searchable archives of deals.

Publisher’s Weekly
The latest news in the publishing world across all genres. Influential book reviews. Free subscriptions to daily general e-news & free twice-weekly e-news for children’s publishing. Paid print magazine.

The Purple Crayon
Harold Underdown is an independent children’s book editor and author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Publishing Children’s Books. His free site, The Purple Crayon, has a wealth of information for newcomers, established professionals, and everyone inbetween. The “Who’s Moving Where?” page is updated monthly with staff changes at agencies and publishers.

Writer’s Digest
Comprehensive articles and news for writers in all genres (not just children’s). Agent interviews. Paid print magazine. Many well-regarded, regularly-updated resource books for sale.

Resources for Teen Writers
That’s teenagers who write, not adults writing for teens. This post on The League of Extraordinary Writers has an amazing list of links.

Grammar Resources
From our own grammar maven, Laura Fineberg Cooper

A Spoonful of Grammar small-dose grammar blog
Vexing Vocabulary Part 1 and Part 2
Commonly Confused Commas
How to Punctuate Dialogue Tags

And one from another source…
43 Embarrassing Grammar Mistakes Even Smart People Make by Christina DesMarais; from Inc. via Pocket

Resources for Setting Up a Website
How to Use Wix (2020)
Guide for Creating a Website Using Wix Editor