Wednesday, July 14, 2010


I am thrilled to announce the sale of Anastasia Suen's newest chapter book series to Kira Lynn at Kane/Miller in a a 4-book deal!

Anastasia Suen is one of those writers that not only writes books for Ronnie and me to sub (and yes, Ronnie just sold Anastasia's newest picture book to Viking!), but editors ask me if Anastasia can write them a book. With 129 published books under her belt and a teacher and mentor to many published authors, Anastasia constantly creates innovative, exciting new projects that editors and readers want to buy.

This newest chapter book series is hush-hush since Anastasia and Kira came up with a new concept that is not yet on the market and we know will be a huge hit with middle grade girls.

So how does a deal like this come about? Over lunch in sunny San Diego, Kira mentioned a concept for a chapter book that she'd love to publish and I immediately thought of Anastasia. After researching the topic we realized that a new series was in the works from another publisher so it was back to the drawing board for Kira and Anastasia. They met at IRA and brainstormed ideas until Kira's aha moment and Anastasia's extensive research proved they had stuck gold with a ultra-popular activity for middle grade girls and yet not a single chapter book with this subject on the market. I think this is what Donny Deutsch would call The Big Idea:)

A Series Proposal and three written chapters later, a new, fabulous chapter book series is born!

Anastasia Suen is the author of 129 books for children and adults, a literacy blogger, a children's literature consultant for several publishers, a former K,1,5, & 6 teacher who visits schools to teach the six traits of writing, and a workshop instructor for SMU and online who teaches adults how to write for children.

So has getting the sale always been a slam-dunk for Anastasia? Take heart, breaking in is tough for everyone. From her bio on the Herman Agency Website:

Children's books have always been a part of my life. My mother started reading to me when I was a baby and we went to the library every week. I wrote my first picture book when I was eleven and I've been writing books for children ever since. I wrote hundreds of manuscripts and collected rejection letters for years...and then it happened. On my fortieth birthday, the phone rang. After writing for twenty-nine years, I sold my first book! Today I've sold 115 books: board books, picture books, easy readers, and chapter books (including a book for adults about how to write children's books). I've also written articles, poems, and stories for textbooks, magazines, and the web.

In 1995 I began working as a children's literature consultant for Sadlier-Oxford. Later I joined the Rosen Publishing Group Reading Advisory Board and became a "Classroom Connections" reviewer for Book Links. Today I also work as a consultant for the Brown Books Publishing Group, Lee & Low Books and National Geographic School Publishing. I blogged for Scholastic Teacher on Nonfiction Monday (a day I created). I also write about children's books each week on six other blogs.



  1. Wow! Congrats to Anastasia! I can't wait to see what the books are about!

    I didn't realize that after writing for 29 years, Anastasia sold her first book. She's definitely an inspiration for every writer out there!

    Thanks for sharing this announcement!

  2. Way to go Anastasia and Jill!

  3. You certainly know how to pique our interest. Can't wait to find out more about this series!
    Congrats to all.

  4. Congratulations to both of you! This series sounds so exciting. And what dedication Anastasia has to write for 29 years before her first book got published.

  5. That's is fantastic! Hooray Jill & Anastasia!! How exciting! We are all squeeing in the excitement!!!

  6. Well, yay!!!!! And to think I knew you both before you knew each other! Congrats to all involved!

  7. Um, y'all? I think it shows tremendous dedication on Anastasia's part, first to write for 29 years before publishing her first book; and then to sell 115 in the years since.

    She's not that old. But she is that wonderful.

    I am on tenterhooks to find out what this untapped subject is.

  8. Anastasia, you are a model of inspiration! We celebrate this wonderful news with you (o;

  9. This is amazing and so encouraging, (though in 29 years I'll be . . . never mind.) I am thrilled for you both and I can't wait to read the series. My interest is definitely piqued—what activity has not yet been written about . . .

  10. My Can't Wait to Read list grows ever longer... congratulations!

  11. Thanks for the behind the scenes look at how the series came about!

    Can't wait till the secret is revealed.

  12. Congratulations to Anastasia!!

  13. Awesome. Anastasia is a great writer and teacher. Congratulations. Can't wait to read them.

  14. So happy for Anastasia! I took a PB workshop with her and she is an amazing teacher and a truly warm, enjoyable person to spend time with. I can't wait to see the chapter books on the shelves. And congrats to her on the recent PB sale, too!



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