Are you a New Zealand based children’s writer?
Are you looking for a suitable publishing house for a book you’ve just completed?
Below, you’ll find 16 top children’s book publishers in New Zealand. We’ve also highlighted those, which are currently accepting submissions.
Based out of Mt. Eden, Auckland, Clean Slate Press is an independent children’s book publishing company that specializes in producing titles intended for young readers, students, and teachers while exploring New Zealander and Pacific content. Some of their titles include “There Was An Old Woman…" by Kaitrin McMullan and Liz Weir, “How Water Came to Be: A Tale from Australia" retold by Annie Thomas, “Sina and the Eel: A Tale from Samoa" retold by Leilani Watson.
The team at Clean Slate Press unfortunately does not accept unsolicited manuscripts for review. If you’re an author with literary representation, it’s highly recommended that you have your literary agent submit a query letter or book proposal on your behalf. For more information or general inquiries, you can reach the team at Clean Slate Press through their website’s online contact form, via email, or call +64096300382.
Founded in 2009, Eunoia Publishing is an independent press based out of Auckland. Their primary goal is to publish creative works of fiction and nonfiction, providing New Zealand authors the opportunity to reach a wide audience and gain exposure as they develop their writing careers. Their imprint, Twinkling Books, is responsible for publishing vibrant and engaging children’s books. Some of their titles include the award-winning “Smoke" by Cao Wenxuan, “A Panda’s Story" by Tan Yaming, translated by Duncan Poupard, and “Abigail Knightly" by Latesha Randall and Esther Tattersall.
They currently have an open call for New Zealand illustrators of children’s picture books, middle grade chapter books, and young adult novels. If you’re interested in applying, you can use their online submissions form. Be sure to include your CV, a few samples of your recent work, your contact information, and a website (if applicable). For more information or general inquiries, you can contact the team at Eunoia Publishing via email, through their online contact form, or call +64211518895.
HUIA Publishers is an award-winning independent press based out of Thorndon, Wellington. Established in 1991, HUIA’s main mission to produce works that provide insight into Māori and Pacific perspectives through the genres of general fiction, young adult fiction, nonfiction, academic titles, and children’s books. Some of their bestselling children’s books include titles like “Tuna and Hiriwa" by Ripeka Takotowai Goddard, “Haka" by Patricia Grace, and “Kei hea te Hipi Kākāriki?" by Mem Fox.
They are currently accepting manuscript submissions through their online submissions form. They note that they are currently not accepting short story collections or poetry from unpublished authors. The team at HUIA strongly encourages you to browse through their existing catalogue of titles to make sure that your project will be a good fit with the press. It can take anywhere up to three months to receive a response about your manuscript, so have patience! For general inquiries or more information, you can contact the team via email or call +6444739262.
Founded in 2012, Mauao Publishing is an small independent press based out of Tauranga. They are passionate about publishing books about the Aotearoa, and have even won several awards like Best Nonfiction Category Winner: New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults in 2015. Some of their titles include “Eliza and the White Camellia: A Story of Suffrage in New Zealand," “Ko Mauao te Maunga: Legend of Mauao," and “Motiti Blue and the Oil Spill: A Story from the Rena Disaster" by Debbic McCauley. While not actively seeking submissions at this time, you’re more than welcome to call +64276591260 or message the team on Facebook to inquire as to whether they’re accepting query letters or submissions.
Founded in 1990, Potton & Burton is one of New Zealand’s largest independent publishing houses. Based out of Nelson, this press publishes a wide range of nonfiction, inclusive of children’s books, with an emphasis on environmental themes. Some of their titles include “Herbert: The Brave Sea Dog" by Robyn Belton, “Animals of Aotearoa" by Gillian Candler and Ned Barraud, and “Toroa’s Journey" by Maria Gill and Gavin Mouldey.
They are currently accepting book proposals via email, but note that they do not accept fictional novels, short stories, or poetry. They also only accept children’s books manuscripts from previously published authors, or upon recommendation. For more information, you can review their submissions guidelines. You should include a brief synopsis of the proposal, an outline of any personal experience, as well as a short author bio. For more information or general inquiries, you can contact the team at Potton & Burton through their website’s online contact form.
Te Papa Press operates in conjunction with the Museum of New Zealand. Located in Wellington, Te Papa Press has produced several award-winning books about New Zealand art, culture, and the natural world for readers of all ages. They’ve produced a selection of children’s books like “Why is That Lake so Blue?" by Simon Pollard, “100 Amazing Tales from Aotearoa" by Simon Morton and Riria Hotere, and “The Curioseum: Collected Stories of The Odd & Marvellous" by Adrienne Jansen and illustrated by Sarah Laing.
The team at Te Papa Press is not actively seeking submissions at this time. If you’re an author with literary representation, it’s highly recommended that you have your literary agent submit query letter or book proposal on your behalf. For more information or general inquiries, you can reach the team via email or call +6443817013.
7. Gecko Press
Gecko Press is an independent publishing company based out of Wellington, New Zealand. They specialize in children’s books, and have worked with a wide range of authors from various countries like France, Germany, Poland, and more. Founded in 2005, Gecko Press has published titles like “Encyclopedia of Grannies" by Eric Veillé, “Paraweta" by Stephanie Blake, and “The Visitor" by Antje Damm.
The team at Gecko Press will not consider unsolicited material. They highly recommend that you have an agent, manuscript assessor, or book industry contact recommend your work in order to be considered. If you’re an author with literary representation, you can have your literary agent submit a query letter on your behalf. Be sure to include a cover letter, a list of any previously published works, any awards you have won, a brief author bio, sample illustrations (if applicable), and a self-addressed envelope to have your material returned. For more information, be sure to review their submission guidelines. For general inquiries, you can reach out through their website’s online contact page.
Established in 1992, David Ling Publishing is an independent press based out of Northland, New Zealand. Their imprint, Duck Creek Press, was founded in 2010 and specializes in the production of children’s books. Some of their titles include “A Dog Like That!" by Janene Cooper and Evie Kemp, “A Hot Cup of Chocolate" by Rose Stanley and Lisa Allen, and “I am an Artist" by Nikki Slade Robinson.
They are currently accepting manuscript submissions via regular post. You’re asked to include a book proposal first so that they can determine if your project will be a good fit with the publisher. Be sure to include a cover letter, a brief publication history, and any background information that may be relevant to your project. You should also include a self-addressed stamped envelope if you would like your materials returned to you. For more information, be sure to review David Ling Publishing’s submission guidelines. If you have general inquiries, you can reach out via email or call +6494314200.
Scholastic is a world-renowned publishing company that has reach all across the globe. Their New Zealand division, which is based out of East Tamaki, Auckland, prides itself on original and creative children’s stories for young readers to enjoy. They publish picture books, Maori-dedicated titles, activity books, nonfiction, and fiction titles. Some of their most recent releases include books like “To Trap A Thief" by Des Hunt, “There’s a Hedgehog in my Pants!" by Amy Harrop, and “Five Little Ducks Went Off to School" by Peter Millett.
They are unfortunately closed to submissions at this time due to an overwhelming number of submissions they’ve received. They will be closed until the year 2020, but you’re strongly encouraged to check back at a later date. In the meantime, you can review their submission guidelines to prepare your project for consideration. If you’re a New Zealand-based illustrator, you may be interested in reaching out to Scholastic New Zealand via email. For more information, you can contact the team via email.
Hachette New Zealand is a division of Hachette Book Group, which produces works of fiction, nonfiction, and titles for younger readers. Some of their kid’s books include “A Lion in the Meadow" by Margaret Mahy, “Stories for Kids Who Dare to be Different" by Ben Brooks, and “The Wizards of Once" by Cressida Cowell. The team at Hachette New Zealand is currently accepting manuscript submissions for children’s books only, so this is the perfect opportunity for all aspiring children’s book authors.
You can submit your work through their website’s online submissions form. You’re asked to include your contact information, a brief synopsis, an approximate word count, a short author bio, any previous publishing experience, a propose marketing plan, a short cover letter detailing your intended audience, they’re approximate age, and your uploaded manuscript. For more information or general inquiries, you can reach out through their website’s online contact form.
11. Cape Catley Ltd.
Cape Catley Ltd. is a small independent press that was founded in 1973 which specializes in producing works by, about, and for New Zealanders. They publish titles of fiction, children’s books, local history, biographies, and other nonfiction subject matter. A few of their children and young adult titles include “I am Leatherman" by Ged Maybury, “Strange Company" by Helen Beagelhole, and “What Happened that Night’ by Heather Marshall. They are unfortunately closed to submissions at this time, but you’re welcome to check back at a later date to see when this status will change. For more information or general inquiries, you can contact the team at Cape Catley via email or call +6498282999.
12. Dream Boat Books
Based out of Waiheke Island, New Zealand, Dream Boat Books is a small independent publisher dedicated to children’s picture books that was founded by husband and wife duo Mark and Rowan Sommerset. They’ve published books like “The Boy and the Cherry Tree," “Two Little Bugs," and “I Love Lemonade." They are not accepting submissions at this time, but you’re more than welcome to browse through their existing catalogue of titles. For more information or general inquiries, you can contact the team at Dream Boat Books via email or call +6421393979.
New Holland Publishers is a New Zealand-based press that mainly produces works of nonfiction across various genres like travel, natural history, food, gardening, environmental issues, children’s books, and more. With an office in Northcote, Auckland, their children’s titles include books like “Dinosaur Hide, Dinosaur Seek" by Brown Watson, “Aliens and UFO’s: A Young Person’s Guide" by JJ Moore, and “Horse Warrior" by Meredith Jaffe.
They are currently accepting manuscript submissions for children’s books via post. You’re asked to include a cover letter that details your contact information, provides a brief author biography and any previous publishing history, a list of comparative titles to your project, a propose marketing plan, a brief synopsis, and the first three chapters of your book or the entire manuscript. For more information, please review their submission guidelines. If you have general inquiries, you can reach out via email or call +61289864700.
14. Papawai Media
Papawai Media is a small independent press that’s entirely family-owned. Based out of Devonport, Auckland, Papawai Media aims to publish books about New Zealand for New Zealanders. They have an impressive catalogue of children’s books like “Flies in His Eyes" by Ian Smith and Jane Thorne, “Kapowai the Dragonfly’s Birthday" by Louise de Varga, and “Max and His Big Imagination: The Beach" by Chrissy Metge. While they are not actively seeking submissions at this time, you’re more than welcome to reach out to the team via email, through their online contact form, or call +6494452966 if they’re currently open to accepting queries or manuscript submissions.
15. Sunshine Books
Sunshine Books is an imprint of Wendy Pye Ltd. It was founded to publish books for educational children’s fiction and nonfiction. With titles written in both English and traditional Samoan language, Sunshine Books has produced titles like “Chicken Little" illustrated by Ilene Richard, “Bobby’s Birthday" by Susan Frame, and “A Trickle of Water" by Elizabeth Pulford. While not actively seeking submissions at this time, you can still reach out to the team at Sunshine books via email or call +6495253575 to see if they’re accepting queries or manuscript submissions.
Founded in 1980, Waiatarua Publishing is an independent publisher of educational children’s books based out of North Shore City, Auckland. They’re a press dedicated to educating young readers about New Zealand history, Maori myths, fiction, and myths of Aotearoa. Some of their titles include “Then There Were Nine" by Phyllis Johnston, “City Night" by Steve Dickinson, “The Green Fish of Ngahue" by Ron Bacon and Mary Taylor, and “Antarctica: The Unfolding Story" by Margaret Andrew. While not actively seeking submissions at this time, you can still reach out via email to see if their editorial team is accepting queries or submissions.
Do you know of any other children’s book publishers in New Zealand? Please tell us about them below in the comments box!
K. Z. Kwan is a freelance writer based out of Halifax, Canada.