A Place for Poetry Collections in Children’s Books?

Dear Jennifer…

Ah, a poet who knows it and wants to work it. There is a place for poetry books in the children’s book market, but it’s a tough one to squeeze into. The picture book market is still scrabbling its way out of the recession, and straight poetry collections are hard sells. To better your chances, your collection should center on one child-friendly theme, which you’ll use as your hook. Douglas Florian built a career by coupling this strategy with clever, child-friendly poems that wow grown-ups, too. Mammalabilia, Insectlopedia, Dinothesaurus: Prehistoric Poems and Paintings… Florian works his poetry like nobody’s business. Where there’s a passion for poetry, there is a way.

Happy writing!
The Editor


  1. Thank you for the information. The first collection I wrote was based on Recess from a child’s point of view. My other poems are thoughts on bullying from a child’s perspective, as well as on grief about a disabled child from a mother’s perspective. Both had great reviews on fanstory.com. I have submitted them to contests, but have had no feedback.

    • You might consider sending an individual poem to a magazine – a number are still printing poetry. The one from the mom’s viewpoint would of course go to an adult magazine.

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