When I got to work at BTP yesterday I was surprised to see four 18in piles of slush. I was even more shocked to learn that that was all we had left of the back log. Nearly all of them were for picture books. After one pile went home with the intern, the adult editor and I went through 2 more piles in a marathon 2 hour session where we passed back and forth. The result is that we have only one pile of slush and now a huge pile that needs to go back to the authors. It was very satisfying. Out of all that I brought home 6 that I wanted to read further. I know that doesn’t sound like many, but if you think about it, it’s quite a lot to look through. If I only find 6 a month that I’m interested in, that’s still 72 a year. Our house only puts out 6-10 books a year. Out of the hundreds we recieve we obviously have to whittle them down.
And to reiterate what’s on the BTP website, we are not looking for picture book manuscripts at this time. Out of all the ones I looked at, I’m only willing to look at one of them again, and then only after significant rewrites. And although the website doesn’t say it, I’ll just add that we’re not looking for seasonal or nonfiction at this time either.
May be excerpted and duplicated for educational purposes.