Saturday, February 2, 2013

Kate Fletcher, Editor at Candlewick

Kate Fletcher is an editor at Candlewick Press, an independent publisher in Somerville, MA that focuses entirely on the children's market.

They're a small company so editors can work on the projects that interest them: fiction, nonfiction, picture books, young adult novels.

"It's really nice," Kate said. "You're not really pigeonholed into working on certain things."

They also don't have acquisition meetings, as many other publishers do. They can sign books without getting committee approval.

Generally, she takes projects to her boss and can usually make an offer afterward.

"I just really have to love it," she said.

Some books with bigger offers or series would need more consideration. This allows Candlewick, an employee-owned company, to take risks and "be creatively led."

Kate focuses about half her time on picture books and half on novels (with slightly more YA than MG). She focuses on fiction, but not science fiction.

On picture books: She wasn't originally interested in rhyme but has come around. "Good rhyme can add a lot," she said. "Bad rhyme is horrible." She does prefer shorter text and really thinks about the read-aloud experience.

On YA novels: One of her titles is YAQUI DELGADO WANTS TO KICK YOUR ASS. The book isn't out yet but has two starred reviews already. The author, Meg Medina, started out in picture books. (More info here.)

On MG: You need strong enough writing and characters to draw a reader in.
She's also a fan of humor, even in serious books.

She also shared her wish list with us--what she wants and doesn't. (One thing on her not-for-her list: paranormal.)

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