Author Susan Hill will this summer launch a children’s imprint to publish books for readers aged seven to 11.
Hill said she decided to launch Little Barn Books after the successful relaunch of her children’s Christmas poem Can It Be True? last year under the adult publishing imprint she runs – Long Barn Books.
She said: “By a nice bit of serendipity, a shorter version of the poem was used by BBC Radio 3 as a carol, for use in their Christmas Carol Competition. This gave the book a terrific boost. I also targeted independent booksellers – sending out dozens of sample copies and offering a 45% discount to indies only. They ordered and re-ordered and some very small bookshops shifted 60 or 100 copies, which for a hardback at £7.99 was very good indeed.”
Hill will publish two of her own children’s books under the imprint this year: Billy-William Bigheart – the Kindest Boy in the Universe (which will be illustrated with black and white drawings) and Our Aunt Chrysanthemum.
She is also keen to get other writers on board. “I would like to find some new children’s book talent. This is not only a self-publishing venture,” she said. “I don’t want to look at what you could call literary fiction for children, or picture books for the small ones, which cost too much for a small publisher to produce. Nor will I be doing books for teens.”
Hill will offer discounts for indies and dedicated children’s bookshops, but is also keen to see the books in chain bookstores. There are also plans to publish the titles in e-format.
Anyone interested in the venture can contact Hill at email@example.com.