Submission Guidelines – Cardinal Rule Press
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Submission Guidelines

Cardinal Rule Press has specific submission windows that we announce throughout the year. Upcoming dates include:

  • January 1, 2023 - January 31, 2023 at 11:59pm EST

We will not read submissions outside of this time period.

Please become familiar with our titles and follow the list of guidelines below before submitting your work.

Our focus is on children’s picture books that empower children through meaningful stories for readers, age 4-11.

Cardinal Rule Press considers unsolicited manuscripts. We accept agented submissions. We do not require exclusive submissions.


Please note: Only submissions sent through the method listed in these guidelines will be considered. We do not accept illustrator submissions at this time.

Children’s realistic fiction picture books (word count up to 1,000).

Realistic Fiction is a genre made up of stories that could happen in our world and society. A quick way to determine whether or not your story is realistic fiction:

  • Characters live in places that could be or are real
  • Characters are human beings
  • Characters are not animals
  • There is no magic in realistic fiction

Online submissions only. Link will be provided during open submission windows.

Please attach the complete manuscript saved as TITLE_LAST NAME.

You will see a confirmation page from Google Forms when you submit. Please note that you will not receive an email confirmation for your submission.

Due to the volume of submissions, we will only be responding to manuscripts we are interested in pursuing.

Online Submission Instructions

Cover Letter (Query)

The cover letter should be attached. It should include:

  • A brief description of the story.
  • Short bio of the author, mentioning publishing history or relevant background information.
  • Two to three sentences telling us the inspiration for your story.
  • A listing of three comparative picture books published in the last five years and a few sentences describing how your book is different.
  • Contact information

The Manuscript

  • Should be attached as a WORD document, Google Doc, or PDF file.
  • Manuscripts should be typed double-spaced.
  • Manuscripts should be saved TITLE_LAST NAME

Please Do Not

  • Call or email about the status of your submission.
  • Include artwork or photographs along with your manuscript.


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