Latest news from Undiscovered Voices

Submissions open 1st July for Fourth SCBWI Undiscovered Voices

Anthology has proven a successful path to publication for many UK writers


The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) British Isles will once again help fresh, new voices in children’s literature – both writers and illustrators – find agents, publishers and ultimately readers through its Undiscovered Voices project.


From the three previous anthologies, 22 of the 36 selected authors have received publishing contracts for more than 70 books. These authors have been nominated for and won an amazing array of literary prizes: including the Carnegie Medal, Waterstone’s Children’s Book Prize, Branford Boase Award, Blue Peter Award, the SCBWI Crystal Kite Award, and nearly 30 regional awards.


This year submissions will only be accepted via an online submissions process between 1st July to 15th August 2013. There is no submissions’ fee, but only un-agented and unpublished members of SCBWI living in the UK and Europe (writing in the English language) are eligible. This is the first time that SCBWI members living in Europe also will be able to submit fiction and illustrations.


“The SCBWI British Isles region is thrilled to be at the forefront of this innovative project to support unpublished writers and illustrators,” said Natascha Biebow, Regional Advisor for the SCBWI British Isles. “What started out as a kernel of an idea has evolved into unprecedented opportunity to get discovered by publishers. Now expanded to encompass SCBWI Europe, we are excited to see what new talents will emerge. We wish all contestants the best of luck!”

The Undiscovered Voices anthology will include twelve fiction extracts – from early readers up through young adult novels – and twelve black-and-white illustrations. The anthology will be published in February 2014 and sent free of charge to editors, art directors and agents whose focus is children’s literature. The book will be produced by volunteers, with the financial support of Working Partners Ltd, a London-based company that creates series fiction.


“Working Partners is very proud to continue to support Undiscovered Voices,” said Chris Snowden, Managing Director of Working Partners. “It is hard to believe this will be the fourth edition of this wonderful vehicle for new authors! Undiscovered Voices is now an established and high profile launch pad for new writing and we can’t wait to see what talent is discovered and published this time around.”

Award-winning author and illustrator Chris Riddell will serve as the honorary chair for this anthology. He has illustrated more than 100 books for children. With Paul Stewart, he is the creator of the successful Edge Chronicles, Barnaby Grimes and Far Flung Adventures. He is also a celebrated cartoonist for the Observer.


“I am delighted to be taking part in this competition and looking forward to discovering new talent in children’s book writing and illustration,” Riddell said. “We’ve entered a new age of digital art and electronic publishing but classic storytelling and drawing skills are just as important as they ever were.”


The following judges will select the stories and illustrations to be included in the anthology:

  • Gemma Cooper, Literary Agent, The Bent Agency
  • Helen Graham-Cameron, Graham-Cameron Illustration Agency
  • Ben Horslen, Editorial Director, Puffin
  • Sarah Lambert, Editorial Director at Quercus Children’s Books
  • Francis McKay, Francis McKay Illustration Agency
  • Sara O’Connor, Editorial Director for Print & Digital at Hot Key Books
  • Martin Salisbury, Professor of Illustration; Course Leader, MA Children’s Book Illustration, and Director of The Centre for Children’s Book Studies
  • Samantha Smith, Fiction Publisher for Scholastic Children’s Books
  • Sallyanne Sweeney, Literary Agent, Watson, Little Ltd.
  • Ngheim Ta, Senior Designer/Digital Content Coordinator, Templar Books
  • An a representative from The Greenhouse Literary Agency


For more details or to submit your novel extract or illustrations, visit



The SCBWI is a network for the exchange of knowledge among writers, illustrators, editors, publishers, agents, librarians, educators, booksellers and others involved with literature for young people. SCBWI boasts more than 19,000 members worldwide in more than 70 regions, making it the largest children’s writing organization in the world. Through our events and resources, the SCBWI British Isles Region aims to help writers and illustrators develop their craft. This anthology presents a new and exciting means of networking with the publishing industry. Find out more about SCBWI British Isles at To join SCBWI visit the international web site at

About Working Partners

From young chapter books to thrilling adult novels, Working Partners’ books are published all over the globe. Since 1994, we have created some of the most recognised series in children’s fiction, including Animal Ark, Heartland and, more recently, Rainbow Magic, Warriors and Beast Quest. Working Partners have about 100 published projects, consisting of over 1,000 books. We’ve sold our books in 40 languages. Ten of our series have sold more than a million copies. Four have sold more than 10 million.

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