Monthly Archives: July 2016

Textbook Publishers

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Publishing Your Teaching Ideas

Tips by MaryAnn Kohl

Your Book – the idea –

  • Clearly define your idea
    • Assemble, narrow, and sort material and research
    • Find a system to begin
    • File cards
    • Dummy pages
    • Tape recorder
    • Suggestions from this group
  • Research your unique idea (do not skip this step)
    • Check other books for formats
    • Talk to bookstore owners
    • Talk to teachers
    • Talk to librarians
    • Talk to other authors and publishers

Great Advice from a Publisher – Abigail McAden, Asst. Editor at Avon Books

  • Look through new books to find some that resemble what you imagine for your book. If you picture your book looking like an Eric Carl picture book, then it is Harper Collins. If you picture a middle grade adventure, it is an Avon. McAden says, “We get many submissions clearly inappropriate for our company. People think that because their book is so good, we are going to clear off our list and make room for their great picture book. But we don’t do picture books.”
  • “Submitting a manuscript to a publisher who doesn’t do the kind of book you’re writing is a waste of time and money. It gets rejected immediately and makes the author look foolish. You want us to publish you, but you have no idea about our line of books.”
  • It is important to be persistent, but don’t remain ignorantly persistent. Newsletters and conferences for writers are a great help because they’re educating people. That way, you’re learning how to do this.

Writer’s Guidelines – the smart way to begin

  • Send a request for “writer’s guidelines” to each potential publisher (you must find out who publishes the type of book you are writing)
  • This will give you ideas for:
    • what to expect
    • how to tailor your style or book format
    • what exact particular submission process the publisher is looking for

Resources to help you publish your teaching ideas –

  • The Children’s Writer’s and Illustrators Market
  • Literary Market Place (LMP)
  • The Author-Publisher Handbook, Aztex Corporation
  • The Self-Publishing Manual – Dan Poynter, Para Publishing
  • The Simple Guide to Self-Publishing – Mark Ortman, Wise Owl Books
  • 1001 Ways to Market Your Books – John Kremer
  • Book Publishing Resource Guide – John Kremer
  • Children’s Writer Newsletter of Writing and Publishing Trends – 95 Long Ridge Road, West Redding, CT, 068960-1124

A Few Publishers of “Teacher Books” –
Look at your own teacher books and see who published them. Which one is a good fit for your book?

Bemiss-Jason Carson Dellosa
2244 Hilltop Drive
Redding, CA 96002
(530) 221-090
Games, flash cards, calendars, stickers

The Learning Works
PO Box 6187
Santa Barbara, CA 93160
Environmental activities

Creative Teaching Press
[email protected]
P. O. Box 2723
Huntington Beach, CA 92647-0723
800-287-8879, Fax: 1-800-229-9929
Reading, language arts, Spanish, music, math

Learning Resources
380 N. Fairway Drive, Vernon Hills, Illinois 60061
1-800-333-8281 | [email protected]
Construction toys, language, phonics, science

Chicago Review Press
814 N. Franklin St.
Chicago, IL, 60610
Teaching idea books

Learning Wrap-ups
1660 West Gordon Ave #4
Layton, UT 84041
800-992-4966, Fax: 801-497-0063
[email protected]
Basic math, pre-algebra, vocabulary, ESL

Didax Educational Resources
395 Main Street
Rowley, MA 01969
(800) 458-0024, fax (800) 350-2345
[email protected]
Spelling, phonics, math, social studies

Little Brown & Company
34 Beacon St.
Boston, MA, 02108
Children’s activities

Evan-Moor Educational Publishers
18 Lower Ragsdale Drive
Monterey, CA 93940-5746
1-800-777-4362
Arts/Crafts, early learning, science, writing

McDonald & Woodward Publishing Company
431-B East College Street
Granville, Ohio 43023
800-233-8787 (voice) 740-321-1141 (fax)
[email protected]
Posters, Brainy Borders, Drama guides

Fearon Teacher Aids
500 Harbor Boulevard
Belmont, CA, 94002
Resource idea books

Milliken Publishing Company
501 E. Third St, Box 802
Dayton, OH 45401 USA
(800) 444-1144, Fax: (314) 991-4807
[email protected]
Supplemental products for K-12

Frank Schaffer
PO Box 141487
Grand Rapids, MI 49514-1487
800.417.3261, Fax: 888.203.9361
Bargain books, activity books

Pearson Learning Group
135 South Mount Zion Road
P.O. Box 2500
Lebanon, IN 46052
1-800-526-9907

Frog Street Press
308 East Trunk
St. Crandall, TX 75114
(800) 884-3764, Fax: (800) 759-3828
Foreign language, awards, music, planners

Remedia Publications
15887 North 76th Street, Suite 120
Scottsdale, Az 85260
1-800-826-4740 Fax: 877-661-9901
Reading, science, math skills, social studies

Good Apple
PO Box 299
Carthage, IL, 82321
Teacher books/ all subjects , charts and posters

Rock ‘n Learn
P.O. Box 3595
Conroe, TX 77305-3595
(936) 539-2731 fax: (936) 539-2659
[email protected]
Audio/video programs to help kids learn

Grace Publications LLC
605 Wesinpar Road
Johnson City, TN 37604
423-434-2983 Fax: 423-434-2993
Bible Fun, Chart Pack Plus, Clip Art Books

Simon & Schuster – Books for Young Readers
Rockefeller Center
1230 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY, 10020
Craft and hobby

GMG Publishing Corp.
25 W.43rd St.
New York, NY, 10036
Science/Smithsonian

Small World Toys
5711 Buckingham Parkway
Culver City, CA 90230
(310) 645-9680 Fax: (310) 645-7903
Constructive/creative play, infant and toddlers

Gryphon House, Inc.
PO Box 207
Beltsville, MD, 20704
Early childhood activities

Teacher Created Resources
6421 Industry Way
Westminster, CA 92683
888-343-4335, Fax: 800-525-1254

Incentive Publications, Inc.
2400 Crestmoor Road, Ste. 211
Nashville, TN 37215
fax to: 615-385-2967
Grade Book series, ESL and Spanish

Teacher Created Materials
5301 Oceanus Drive
Huntington Beach, CA 92649-1030
800-858-7339, Fax: 714-230-7070
Art, geology, math, technology, thematic units

Instructional Fair
PO Box 141487
Grand Rapids, MI 49514-1487
800.417.3261 fax: 888.203.9361
Foreign language, geography, library skills

Teachers Friend
Manuscript Editor
Scholastic Professional Books
555 Broadway
New York, NY 10012
Arts and crafts, language arts, teacher resources

J. Weston Walch, Publisher
40 Walch Drive
PO Box 658
Portland, ME 04104-0658
207-772-2846 / 800-558-2846
Instructional materials, math, special education

Teaching and Learning Company
P.O. Box 10
1204 Buchanan Street
Carthage, Illinois 62321
800-852-1234, 217-357-2591
Language arts, science, math social studies

Judy Instructo
Educational School Supplies for Teachers/Parents
2244 Hilltop Drive_
Redding, CA 96002 , (530) 221-0902
Giant Floor Puzzles, Clocks, Games, Desk Tapes

Write the Book –

  • Choose: handwrite, type, computer
  • Rough draft stage
  • Rewrite stage: omit, add, refine
  • Verification stage: check facts
  • Proofing stage: fine tooth comb by you and others

Preparing to Submit the Manuscript –

  • Refer to writer’s guidelines
  • Simple, double spaced
  • Large margins
  • Copyright on each page (“option-g” on a Mac) ©2001 Susie Smarty
  • Number each page
  • Name and address on each page
  • Hand-designed pages
  • To illustrate or not to illustrate
  • Suggestions for presentation of manuscript
    • No errors. None. Not any.
    • Leave white space – not overcrowded.
    • The “look” of your submission
  • Dummy book?
  • Folder?
  • Plastic sheet protectors?

Submitting the Manuscript –

THE MANUSCRIPT PACKAGE

The First Impression – Cover Letter
– Query first, or send in entire manuscript (see guidelines)
– Short and direct
– “This is my book about whatever, and do you want to publish it?” approach
– Give the age or grade intended for ( or for adults)
– Give your “credentials” – why you are qualified to write the book
– Give a summary page about the book

The Second Impression – The Manuscript
– Sample of manuscript, or entire manuscript
– Other materials included to complete the package
– Include a SASE for return of materials
– Include a postcard for receipt of materials
– Simultaneous submission or one-by-one?

Sending in your manuscript package –

  • Call first?
  • Get the name of the editor
  • Find out if they need your type of book idea
  • Check out their publishing “line”. Be familiar with the company and the books they carry.
    • Query letter?
    • Unsolicited submission?
  • Include a SASE for return of materials
  • Include a postcard for receipt of materials
  • Simultaneous or one-by-one?
  • Waiting for reply (how long?)
  • Follow-up call

The Wait: What to Expect

  • Replies
  • Rejections (when publishers say, “No”)
  • Personal letters/impersonal letters
  • Length of time (weeks to months)
  • Call if wait seems too long
  • Sometimes a resubmission is necessary
  • After the rejections come in –
    • Send out more manuscripts to new companies
    • Be tough and resilient. Rejections are the norm.
    • Refine your submission according to any suggestions that may have come in from editors, if you are that lucky.

The Acceptance! What to Expect

  • Contract
    • Advance on royalty
    • Common royalty amounts and how paid
    • Author copies
  • Your input as author
    • Text
    • Illustrations
  • The Wait
  • Publication
    • Be the best author in the world
    • Help with publicity
    • Help with Marketing
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Three Act Structure

Syd Field, author of Screenplay and The Screen Writer’s Workbook, has outlined a paradigm that most screenplays follow. A paradigm is a conceptual scheme. This paradigm is the structure that holds screenplays together. According to Field, screenplays follow a three-act structure, meaning the standard screenplay can be divided into three parts: Setup, Confrontation, and Resolution.

Act I comprises the first quarter of the screenplay. (For a two hour movie, Act I would last approximately 30 minutes.)

Act II comprises the next two quarters of the film. (For a two hour movie, Act II would last approximately 60 minutes.)

Act III comprises the final quarter of the film. (For a two hour movie, Act III would be the final 30 minutes.)

The “Plot Point”–According to Field, the three acts are separated by two plot points. A plot point, often called a reversal, is an event that thrusts the plot in a new direction, leading into a new act of the screenplay. Later screenplay gurus have built on Field’s theory by stating that Plot Point #1, which leads into Act II, is the moment when the hero takes on the problem.

The Three-act Paradigm:

three-act

What happens in Act I (Setup)?

Act I comprises the first quarter of the screenplay. (For a two hour movie, Act I would last approximately 30 minutes.)

Exposition–The part of a story that introduces the characters, shows some of their interrelationships, and places them within a time and place.

This part of the story introduces the main character, the dramatic premise, and the dramatic situation.

Main character–the person in the story who has a need/objective to fulfill and whose actions drive the story

Dramatic premise–what the story’s about

Dramatic situation–the circumstances surrounding the action

Inciting Incident–an event that sets the plot of the film in motion. It occurs approximately halfway through the first act.

The “Plot Point”–According to Field, the three acts are separated by two plot points. A plot point, often called a reversal, is an event that thrusts the plot in a new direction, leading into a new act of the screenplay. Later screenplay gurus have built on Field’s theory by stating that Plot Point #1, which leads into Act II, is the moment when the hero takes on the problem.

What happens in Act II (Confrontation)?

Act II comprises the next two quarters of the film. (For a two hour movie, Act II would last approximately 60 minutes.)

Obstacles–In the second act, the main character encounters obstacle after obstacle that prevent him from achieving his dramatic need.

First Culmination–a point just before the halfway point of the film where the main character seems close to achieving his or her goal/objective. Then, everything falls apart, leading to the midpoint.

Midpoint–a point approximately halfway through the film where the main character reaches his/her lowest point and seems farthest from fulfilling the dramatic need or objective.

The “Plot Point”–According to Field, the three acts are separated by two plot points. A plot point, often called a reversal, is an event that thrusts the plot in a new direction, leading into a new act of the screenplay.

What happens in Act III (Resolution)?

Act III comprises the final quarter of the film. (For a two hour movie, Act III would be the final 30 minutes.)

Climax (Second Culmination)–The point at which the plot reaches its maximum tension and the forces in opposition confront each other at a peak of physical or emotional action.

Denouement–The brief period of calm at the end of a film where a state of equilibrium returns.

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Writing Science Fiction and Fantasy

Hey gang, our new course just came out and it’s already really popular. I guess there was a pent up demand for this subject, as I’ve had many students request it, so we finally put it all together in a mega course that covers everything.

As is our promise, we wanted to let existing students get in on a special introductory offer, so for a limited time the $299 course is just $49 using the coupon below. Let’s see some of your wildest science fiction and fantasy ideas in the discussion areas, okay?!

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Steve and Dani Alcorn help you create your original science fiction or fantasy novel or screenplay, step by step.

  • Learn all about the most popular science fiction and fantasy genres.
  • Explore plot techniques for space travel, time travel, psy power, magic and more.
  • Discover the easy way to structure your character’s story.
  • Learn techniques that will bring your writing to life.
  • Publish your novel using these simple steps.
  • Brainstorm marketing and sales techniques that will make you a bestseller!

WRITING SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY — FROM IDEA TO PUBLICATION

Regularly $299, special introductory price just $49 with this link:

https://writingacademy.com/courses/writing-science-fiction-and-fantasy?product_id=128260&coupon_code=SFSPECIAL716

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Molly Builds a Theme Park

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I’m pleased to announce the culmination of two year’s work with the publication of our fun, new children’s book, Molly Builds a Theme Park! It turned out to be a much bigger project than we expected, but I think it was worth it.

When the circus packs up for the season, the animals quickly grow bored. But Molly Monkey organizes them to build the theme park of her dreams. Together they accomplish their goal, and then discover the joy of sharing with others.

Ages 4-10

Linda Alcorn has been engineering the world’s best theme parks since 1979. Steve Alcorn makes equipment used in nearly all of the world’s theme parks. Together they’ve written this captivating tale of a budding theme park designer.

It’s available in full-color paperback or for Kindle. The Kindle version is just $2.99 (or free with the purchase of the paperback) and includes some fun pop-up Easter eggs! Check it out on Amazon.com

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