What is the National Children’s Book of the Year Contest?
It's a contest for prospective children’s authors to submit manuscript(s) for picture book and/or chapter book written for children 3-16 years of age. Applicants have the opportunity for their work to be endorsed by the NAESP Foundation and published by a nationally known publisher.

Why submit a manuscript?
It is extremely difficult to break into the publishing world, let alone have your manuscript reviewed by an esteemed publisher. This is your chance to have your work(s) reviewed by a publisher with a proven track record and extensive outreach across the nation. If you win, you will receive a contract with Charlesbridge Publishing and have your work endorsed by the NAESP Foundation. This is a wonderful opportunity for authors, aspiring authors, or anyone with a great piece of children’s literature.

Who is eligible?
This opportunity is for any individual who has written a children’s manuscript that they feel is worthy of being published.

Who is judging and what are the judging criteria?
A select panel including experts from the fields of editing, education, reviewing, bookselling, and libraries will judge each manuscript. Judging will be based on content, originality, and age-appropriateness. 

How do I submit my manuscript?
1. Download an entry form
2. Attach your completed manuscript(s)
3.  Enclose cash, check or credit card information payable to NAESP Foundation
$45 for the first manuscript and $25 for second and subsequent entries (entry fees are non-refundable)
4.  Mail entry form and manuscript(s) to the NAESP Foundation, Attn.: National Children’s Book of the Year Contest, 1615, Duke Street, Alexandria, VA  22314.  No email entries are accepted.

When does the contest end and how do I know if I won?
Entries can be submitted until March 1, 2012. Five finalists will be announced on March 23, 2012. You will be contacted via email if you are a finalist or check the NAESP Foundation homepage after March 1, 2012. Two winners will be announced March 23, 2012 at NAESP 2012 Annual Conference and receive a contract to publish his/her books.

What do the two winners receive?
Each winner will receive a contract to have his/her book published by Charlesbridge Publishing in Boston and endorsed by the NAESP Foundation with the NAESP Foundation Children’s Book Award emblem on his/her book.

Will I get my manuscripts back?
No, please send copies of manuscript only. 

Do I have to submit illustrations?
No, illustrations are not required for either category. The publisher will identify an illustrator after the manuscript is approved.
Do I relinquish rights after I submit my manuscript?
No, the authors retain all rights unless they win and work with Charlesbridge in a publishing contract.
If I win, will I receive royalties from the selling of my book?
The author contract, including royalties will be negotiated with Charlesbridge, but you are under no obligation to accept their agreement if you decide otherwise.

Who will sell the books?
The books will be marketed for sale via the extensive Charlesbridge Publishing network which will include school libraries and major retail sellers. The books will also be marketed and sold to the education market via NAESP.

Where can I go for more information?
More information about the contest and download an entry form is available on the Foundation page, or by contacting:

NAESP Foundation


(703) 684-3345