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The Building Blocks of Julia Recko and Feeding Minds Press

This month, we'll be highlighting the Donors from Our Rate Your Story *Build-A-Story* Contest (August 1 - 31st). Each will share a little bit about themselves and the building blocks of their career, tell you about their latest project and leave YOU a building block to help build your stories! Be sure to check them out! AND don't forget to enter our contest (more info here) to be eligible for prizes!

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: The new deadline will be September 10th.


Feeding Minds Press is an independent children’s publishing house with a focus on food and farming. We have a goal to help young readers understand where their food comes from, who grows it and how it gets to them.


We are excited for our fall title: “Potatoes for Pirate Pearl” it is a pirate-packed and hilarious read aloud that takes the reader on an adventure to learn how potatoes are grown and harvested. Back matter includes recipes, information on how to grow your own potatoes, and fun potato facts. It publishes on National Talk Like a Pirate Day!


ON PICTURE BOOK DUMMIES: When you are writing or revising, create a picture book dummy so you can see if there’s enough action on the pages or enough variability in the images. Even if you aren’t an artist, just try to make sure there is opportunity for different types of scenes and actions - remember kids don’t normally read the book, but instead listen to it while looking at the pictures and if it is the same scene over and over again, it can be boring.

ON QUERY LETTERS: I don’t need a long query letter. I’d like the pitch, the reason why you wrote the book, a short bio with your writing history - I love to see SCBWI memberships in bios, and a few comps.

ON COMMON MISTAKES: Not reading our manuscript wish list. We do not accept manuscripts with talking animals - but I still get a lot of talking animal manuscripts.

ON WRITING PASSIONS: None of our authors are full time farmers, and most of them are full time authors. However, some of the best manuscripts I’ve read are by people who are very passionate about the topic. I think if you are planning to write a manuscript about blackberries and you prefer oranges, then I’m not sure that is the right story for you to take on. If tractors fascinate you, if you found out that cucumbers are really pickles and that surprised you or made you curious for more wacky food facts… then follow those passions to the best possible story.


I’m always looking for livestock manuscripts. I’m also currently looking for a pumpkin story, a farm technology story, and a women in agriculture story. I think it is important to note I am not looking for bee books, garden books or books set in gardens unless they have a very unique angle. I’m looking for books about farms - specifically modern farms that showcase modern technology.

JULIA'S PRIZE: Julia has generously donated one (1) Above-the-Slush Pass to an appropriately themed picture book (suited to Feeding Minds Press)! It may or may not be a finalist, but will need to be a well-written story with wonderful storytelling.

Meet MORE Prize Donors and Find More Prizes HERE [Click on the Links] The Building Blocks of Monique Jones Brown

And don't forget to send in your entry here:

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