If you’re an author in the UK and have penned a book for children that you want to publish, you’re going to need a publisher, unless you’ve decided to self-publish.
Below we’ve listed 21 top UK children’s book publishers accepting submissions.
Are you looking for a publisher with precedence? Andersen Press, located in London, was founded in 1976 by Klaus Flugge, named in tribute to Hans Christian Andersen. Their first book was Goldilocks and the Three Bears by Tony Ross. Their list now consists of over 2000 published titles.
They are known for some of the best loved authors of children’s books. These include David McKee, the creator of “Elmer the Patchwork Elephant”; Tony Ross, of the “Little Princess”; and Ruth Brown, whose books include classics such as “A Dark Dark Tale” and “The Big Sneeze”. Colin McNaughton, author of the “Preston Pig” series is among Andersen’s bestselling titles worldwide. Many of their books fit into the requirements of the Literacy Hour, with retellings of traditional tales, books with rhyming or repetitive texts.
Their Submission Guidelines can be found here
Sometimes stories are tools for learning. Ransom, founded in 1997, is a publisher with a heart for literacy for all ages. Located in West Meon, Ransom publishes children’s books in fiction and non-fiction for struggling and/or reluctant readers and structured reading programmes (e.g. Book-banded or phonics), for ages four and up.
They are the publisher for series such as “Microwave Shakespeare” and “Reading Stars”.
Submission Guidelines are found here.
3. Buster Books
In July 1985 Michael O’Mara Books published its first book. They were a simple Mom and Pop business. Now, after over thirty years of publications, it is still a family firm, producing one hundred and fifty new books a year.
Buster Books is an imprint of Michael O’Mara Books, located in London. They publish books for curious and creative children. Their categories include activity and puzzles, art and craft, coloring, reference, early years, fiction, and sticker books. They are the home publisher of the “Cosmic Colin” series by Tim Collins. Currently, they only accept non-fiction manuscripts.
Their Submission Guidelines can be found here.
Calling all Dr. Who fans! Candy Jar Books, located in Cardiff, is an award-winning independent book publisher. Established in 2010 by Shaun Russell and Justin Chaloner, they publish a wide variety of quality books, from non-fiction, general fiction and children’s, through to a range of cult TV books. Candy Jar is looking for new authors who are offering a fresh perspective on classic genres.
They are home to author’s such as Alison Thomas of “Amulet”, Benjamin Burford-Jones of “Beware of the Mirror Man”, and Mark Brake, author of “Space, Time Machine, Monster”.
Submission Guidelines can be found here.
Do you want a publisher with market presence? Walker Books is an independent British publisher of children’s books, founded in 1978 by Sebastian Walker, Amelia Edwards, and Wendy Boase. The company published 18 books in 1980 and now publishes 300 books per year.
Located in London, the Walker Books Group is home to books for readers of all ages. Award-winning authors and illustrators for the group include National Ambassador for Children’s Literature, Kate DiCamillo, M.T Anderson, Patrick Ness, and Jon Klassen, and major brands for the group are the widely acclaimed “Judy Moody” and the bestselling “Where’s Wally/Where’s Waldo”.
They only accept illustrated books or illustrated stories from authors. Submission Guidelines can be found here.
Are you writing experimental concepts in children’s literature? Dinosaur Books was established in London, 2014, by Sonya McGilchrist. They seek to create thoughtful, imaginative books for children. Dinosaur Books is looking for uncommon story settings such as their book, “The Dinoteks”, about living machine dinosaurs. Dinosaur Books is presently only accepting fiction for children between the ages of 5-12.
Their Submission Guidelines can be found here.
Fledgling Press, founded in Edinburgh in 2000, was created with the aim of publishing and promoting new authors, making their material available quickly and cost-effectively via print and digital means. Over the next decade, Fledgling Press published titles in various genres including fiction, biography, poetry, historical and crime fiction. Some examples of their children’s books are “The Peerie Monster” series and “The Calling”.
They are interested in fiction, life stories with an unique twist, and young adult fiction. Their submissions are closed till the 1st of July 2019 . You can visit their website for further details or updates.
8. Floris Books
Look no further for the biggest name in Scottish children’s books. Floris Books is an independent publishing company based in Edinburgh, Scotland. They were founded in 1976 and in November 2016 Floris Books won the Saltire Society’s Scottish Publisher of the Year award. They are also the largest children’s book publisher in Scotland.
Please do note Floris Books has very specific submission guidelines. It doesn’t accept unsolicited submissions for children’s books unless they are written by members of diverse communities whose views are underrepresented in the world of children’s book publishing, or are intended for the Steiner-Waldorf community. Otherwise, its Scottish children’s list is closed and they do not accept submissions for generic non-Scottish children’s books either. Please ensure you read this publisher’s guidelines carefully before considering making a submission.
Flying Eye Books (London) is the children’s imprint of award-winning visual publishing house Nobrow. Founded in 2013, they excel in illustrated content with a focus on the craft of children’s storytelling and non-fiction.
Since then, an array of stunning and innovative titles have populated the list, including the award-winning “Hildafolk” series by Luke Pearson, the highly acclaimed “Professor Astro Cat’s Frontiers of Space" from Ben Newman and Dr. Dominic Walliman.
Thise quirky publisher is accepting proposals in genres such as graphic novels, comics, and illustrated non-fiction for children, picture books, and novels. It is particularly eager to work with authors and writers from diverse backgrounds and minorities.
Flying Eye Submission Guidelines can be found here.
10. The Quarto Group
Looking for a publisher with an eye for innovation? The Quarto Group began in London in the 1970s. They innovated to create beautiful books, creative projects and useful information for curious and passionate minds of all ages. In 1990, Quarto started its first ever children’s imprint, Quarto Children’s Books, which specialized in books with kits or other special features.
Examples of Quarto Children’s Books are the “Little People, Big Dreams Series”, by Isabel Sanchez Vergara and “Grandad’s Secret Giant” by David Litchfield.
Submission Guidelines for The Quarto Group can be found here.
The independent children’s publisher is located in Leicester. They specialise in fiction books for children of all ages. Picture books, board books, fiction, fantasy, and action are categories and genres they master in. They have an exhaustive process to review and select manuscripts. Writers and authors will need to be very specific about their idea, concept, marketability, and if there is a potential for a series. Pitch your concept or story after knowing the answers to all their questions.
Submission Guidelines and details are available on this page.
12. Maverick Books
Maverick Arts Publishing Ltd was launched in West Sussex in 2009 by Steve Bicknell and now has over 130 titles across the formats of board books, picture books, early readers, graphic reluctant readers, junior fiction and activity books.
Their author Clare Helen Welsh was awarded Silver Medal in the Greenhouse Funny Prize for her picture book, “Aerodynamics of Biscuits”.
Currently, you can only send proposals or manuscripts for junior fiction. If your story or idea is targeted at children aged 7-10 years, this press is the perfect choice for you. They are also constantly on the lookout for illustrators so mail them your portfolio for any future collaborations. The current submission Guidelines can be found here.
Do you love history and want to share that love through children’s books? Mogzilla is an independent publishing company whose mission is to connect children with history through storytelling through brilliant books and graphic novels.
Mogzilla was started in 2004 in London, they concentrate on a select list of titles, building them slowly over time. Mogzilla’s first series was “Robin Price’s Spartapuss Tales” —set in ancient Rome in a world ruled by cats.
Writers and authors of historical fiction for children should consider sending their manuscript to Mogzilla. The book and story should be aimed at kids aged 6 plus. Find their instructions and guidelines listed on this page.
An independent publisher for 20 years, Imagine That is situated in Suffolk. Earlier named as Top That, it was renamed Imagine That to signify its endeavours in children’s publishing and illustrating. They have 3 imprints and each imprint has a specific focus and genre they specialise in. Craft kits, activity books, board books, and picture books are some other elements they have been consistently creating and producing.
They are seeking submissions and illustrations from authors, writers, and creators. The publisher isn’t looking for children’s or adult fiction at present.
15. Wacky Bee Books
This unique and quirky publisher is looking to shake the world of children’s publishing. Based in London, the small yet dedicated press is printing fun, informative, and interesting material for children of all ages. Starting with picture books, early readers, and middle grade books, they want to create something for everyone. Children from the ages of 3-12 can enjoy and learn using Wacky Bee Books.
They would like each story or picture book to have some elements of humor. You can read their submission policy on this page.
16. Birlinn Limited
Birlinn Limited is an independent Scottish book publisher based in Edinburgh, and through its imprint BC Books, publishes books for young readers encouraging them to develop a lifelong interest in literature. Examples of books published by this Saltire Society Publisher of the Year, through BC Books, are “Walking Mountain" by Joan Lennon and “Bear’s Adventure" by Benedict Blathwayt.
Birlinn Limited’s Submission Guidelines can be found here.
17. Piccadilly Press
Looking for a small publisher to give you quality publishing? Piccadilly Press Limited, the London-based children’s publisher was founded by Brenda Gardner in 1983.
They have a strong position in the teenage fiction market, and are also noted for a successful picture book list as well. They publish books such as “Flying Fergus” by Chris Hoy and “The Girl Who Drank the Moon” by Kelly Barnhill.
If you’re interested in working with them, send your full manuscript along with a synopsis. You can email it to them in a Word or PDF file.
With an experience of over 50 years, BookLife has printed and promoted the best of children’s literature. They have managed to create some strong and impactful educational materials for children and kids. BookLife has assisted teachers and educators to teach, inform, and guide children about various topics. They are accepting submissions for fiction and non-fiction for 3-9 year olds. Send a manuscript via email to them.
This boutique, independent publisher is founded by writer, narrator, and publisher Mikka Haugaard. They have a unique approach to selecting books and choose the edgy, darker and humorous novels over anything else. Being Danish, Mikka has used his culture and heritage to focus on powerful, cool fairy tales and fantasy stories. Unlike other traditional publishers who want to do only positive, uplifting stories, this press loves to write and share about the ups and downs of life. They publish books about children from the age of 7 onwards. You can read the submission guidelines mentioned on this page.
The innovative, enthusiastic publisher has been publishing children’s and young adult books for years. They have a knack for spotting fresh, engaging talent and working with them creatively. Fiction, non-fiction, cartoon, and poetry for children aged from 5-12 years are genres they publish. They are also seeking manuscripts and ideas from new authors and writers.
Read the submission guidelines outlined here before you send them a manuscript. You don’t need to send the manuscript initially.
Matthew James Publishing Ltd, located in Stockport, is a small independent UK based publisher which has been around for over 20 years. They have a motto known as ‘Publishing with Ideals’ which guides their practices, the authors they work with and the titles they publish.
Tiny Tree is its imprint for children’s literature and picture books. They want to produce more titles like “More than a Me”, “The Field Feud”, and “The Mechanics of Mechanicsville”.
Their Submission Guidelines can be found here.
Are you a UK children’s book publisher accepting submissions? Please tell us about your organization in the comments box below!
Tony Franklin is a writer, pastor, and teacher from Illinois and Kentucky, United States, with a background in philosophy, psychology, and biblical studies. He is an advocate for and a student of multi-cultural ministries and has a passion for music of all types. He has been blogging inspirational reading for nearly ten years at www.myabishai.blog and www.myabishai.net and recently published a critical book at politics and religion called “Jesus Politics".