About Holiday House
Holiday House was founded in 1935. It was led by John H. Briggs from the time he acquired the business in 1965 until 2016 when the company was sold to a new company formed by Trustbridge Partners.
The history of Holiday House is available in Holiday House: The First Sixty-Five Years by Russell Freedman and Barbara Elleman, published in 2000. Here are some excerpts:
"In 1935, a new firm called Holiday House set up three desks in the corner of a printing plant and prepared to publish its first list of books. 'The event was unique in at least one respect,' Publishers Weekly would say. 'The new company was the first American publishing house ever founded with the purpose of publishing nothing but children's books.'
"The first of its kind, then—a specialized publisher with a unique program and a diminutive catalog, small enough to fit in a child's palm. The catalog announced five books, three nursery rhyme broadsides, and the publisher's intentions: '. . . Its editorial policy embraces only such books as are worthy of inclusion in a child's permanent library.' " And so began our history.
What is the story behind the little boy sitting on a rock and reading a book at the top of the website? From the history: " 'In 1938,' according to the Holiday House News, 'we came across Kenneth Grahame's story, "The Reluctant Dragon," . . . and asked Ernest H. Shepard to illustrate it. One of his drawings was of the little boy who read "natural history and fairy-tales . . . just took them as they came, in a sandwichy sort of way, without making any distinctions; and really his course of reading strikes one as rather sensible." Both idea and drawing were so fitting that the little boy reading a book inevitably became our permanent device. . . . The new colophon appeared on the cover of the 1939 Holiday House catalog. . . . He has identified the firm ever since. . . .' "
Holiday House "has changed over the years, sometimes by design and sometimes not. And it will continue to evolve and adapt. Yet in many ways it remains the same old place: relatively small . . . and completely devoted to its authors and illustrators."
Frequently Asked Questions
Note: Holiday House prices and availability are
subject to change.
How do I submit a manuscript to Holiday House?
Holiday House is a publisher of children's books only. We specialize in quality hardcovers, from picture books to young adult, both fiction and nonfiction.
We publish children's books for ages four and up. We do not publish mass-market books, including, but not limited to, pop-ups, activity books, sticker books, coloring books, or licensed books.
Due to the volume of manuscripts we are receiving, Holiday House will no longer be able to respond to or return materials that we are not interested in publishing. We do, however, make every effort to carefully consider each submission we receive. If we are interested in your manuscript, we will respond within four months of receiving it.
Please send the entire manuscript, whether submitting a picture book or novel. All submissions should be directed to the Editorial Department, Holiday House, 425 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10017. Send your manuscript via U.S. Mail. WE DO NOT ACCEPT CERTIFIED OR REGISTERED MAIL. There is no need to include a self-addressed, stamped envelope. We do not consider submissions by e-mail or fax.
Please note that you do not have to supply illustrations. However, if you have illustrations you would like to include with your submission, you may send detailed sketches or photocopies of the original art. Do NOT send original art.
By agreeing to review a submission, we do not assume any obligation to refrain from publishing a book based on a similar idea, concept, or story.
Thank you for your interest in Holiday House.
How do I submit artwork?
Never send original artwork. If you wish to submit, please send Xeroxes of full-color samples and of black-and-white line work. WE DO NOT ACCEPT CERTIFIED OR REGISTERED MAIL. No submissions will be returned.
We do not comment individually on artwork submissions. If we wish to schedule a portfolio review based on your submitted work, we will contact you. We do not have a drop-off policy, and we do not schedule portfolio reviews without first receiving samples.
We specifically look for:
1. Work that is highly original and geared to the trade market.
2. Humor, multicultural work, historical work, fantasy and folklore, jacket art.
3. Illustrators who are professional and competent and have a strong understanding of the process involved in illustrating a children's book.
We do not publish work geared to the mass market.
You may submit your samples to: Director of Art and Design, Holiday House, 425 Madison Ave., NY, NY 10017.
We look forward to seeing your work!
Thank you for thinking of Holiday House.
Do Holiday House books contain Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data?
All books published by Holiday House contain CIP data.
Is Holiday House a member of the Children's Book Council?
Yes, Holiday House is a member of the CBC. For more information, visit the CBC.
If I have a question not answered on this site, how do I contact Holiday House?
Please write or email us at:
425 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10017