Open Call for Middle Grade and YA Fantasy Manuscripts: August 4 – September 1

Open Call for middle grade and young adult fantasy manuscripts

I’ve fallen in love with fantasy books this summer. Again. Which can mean only one thing: it’s time for an open call for fantasy manuscript submissions.

On my shelves are books by Philip Pullman, Leigh Bardugo, and Garth Nix. Also, Diana Wynne Jones, Neil Gaiman, and Kelly Barnhill. And then there’s Jonathan Stroud, S.E. Grove . . .

I’ve been eating these books up, and losing myself in their magical worlds. Some are novels I’m re-reading, like the Bartimaeus Trilogy. And some I’m coming to new, like the Mapmaker’s Trilogy. And I’m swooning.

Why do we find fantasy books so compelling?

I think in part it’s the freedom that comes with the genre—to investigate different ways of being, to escape to new worlds, to meet strange creatures. These books are an invitation to reconsider who we are as human beings, and to grapple with the nature of good and evil. Reading fantasy, I feel prodded, challenged, refreshed, and energized—and willing to put myself into the authors’ hands and go wherever their books take me.

All of this makes me want to publish more fantasy myself!

So I’m putting out a call to all unagented authors to send me your middle-grade or young adult fantasy manuscripts.

Send your manuscripts to me at between August 4 and September 1, 2017. Due to the volume of submissions, I will only be sending out letters of interest.

I’m excited to see what worlds you’ve created!

Alix Reid Executive Editor


Alix Reid
Executive Editor
Carolrhoda Books and Carolrhoda Lab
Lerner Publishing Group

22 thoughts on “Open Call for Middle Grade and YA Fantasy Manuscripts: August 4 – September 1

  1. Sara

    Is there anywhere to look for more specific guidelines? Do you just want a query in the email with a full attached? Or do you also want a synopsis?

  2. Sarah Totton

    Hi Alix,

    I have a couple of questions:

    1. Is there a format you prefer for the manuscript attachment (.pdf, .rtf, .docx)?

    2. Is there a time frame (# of months) after which we can assume a rejection if we haven’t heard back?


    Sarah T.

    1. alixreid

      Good point! Yes, this is the word count for a YA. A MG word count would be more like 50,000 to 80,000. Thanks for asking for clarification!

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