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Blog: This Writing Life


  • Writer's pictureMelissa Stoller

How I Met My Publisher and Editor

This post originally appeared on Epic Eighteen.

​I’ll always remember the story of how I met two of the most important people on my writing journey: my publisher and my editor. I met my publisher, Callie Metler-Smith from Clear Fork Publishing, by sending her a query for a picture book about a squirrel. In that email, I mentioned that I also had a time-travel chapter book manuscript ready. Callie responded saying I should send the PB manuscript, but what really interested her was the time-travel story. Callie bought my chapter book series. Book One, THE ENCHANTED SNOW GLOBE COLLECTION: RETURN TO CONEY ISLAND, released in August 2017, and Book Two: THE LIBERTY BELL TRAIN RIDE, will come chugging down the tracks this year. And the squirrel story? I’m still revising that one! At the same time, I was working on a manuscript about a girl who paints with a magic paintbrush. This story was inspired by my love of art history and the Impressionists specifically. I discovered that Callie is also an artist and is similarly fond of Impressionist painters. I pitched my story idea to Callie, and later signed a contract for my debut picture book, SCARLET’S MAGIC PAINTBRUSH!

With Callie Metler-Smith at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Then, enter my editor. I had been taking several classes and was an assistant for Mira Reisberg’s Children’s Book Academy ( Lucky for me, Mira became an Art Director and Editor at Clear Fork, and is art directing and editing my picture book. And Mira paired me with one of her former students, the extremely talented illustrator Sandie Sonke ( I am truly thrilled with the team on this manuscript! It’s been a long journey, and I’m very excited that my debut picture book will be releasing soon! I am especially grateful to my mentors, Callie and Mira, for believing in this project and supporting me at every stage of the process. Thanks for reading about how I met my publisher and editor! Good luck with your submission process!


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