December 15, 2017

Get to Know KIT

Most of my followers know that I’m the editor of Kid’s Imagination Train.  I am fortunate to have people on the staff who understand the vision and value of KIT.  

Book reviewer Donna Smith, voiceover talent Sharon Blumberg, and illustrator Shelley Dieterich donate their talents to produce Kid's Imagination Train. Regina Montana recently joined the staff as our marketing promoter. Because Shelley and Donna will be pursuing other interests next year, Anjali Amit will become our new book reviewer and illustrator Denise Woodward will be creating art for KIT.

KIT began as a blog in 2013.  Oh my goodness, how we have grown!  In a couple of years we earned a little income to purchase a domain.  Not long after, we found Youblisher, a website which generates free page-turning flipbooks.  We also have an audio page where children may listen to their favorite features. 

There are two reasons why Kid’s Imagination Train was created:  one, to give writers a place to get published since the children’s magazine market was shrinking, and two, to inspire children to learn by giving them the opportunity to illustrate a story or an article and have their pictures published online.  Over four years, KIT has given children educational and entertaining features which can be read in the classroom or at home.  It has also given writers a way to build their bios.

KIT is a free online magazine.  It's a small publication that is funded through donations and advertising.  

Since the inception of our little magazine, no one on our staff earns a salary.  Not many people are willing to work for free for so long. I admire the talents of Shelley, Donna, and Sharon, and welcome Regina, Anjali, and Denise.  I'm so proud of our staff.  These special people are dedicated and believe in the value of KIT.   

December 1, 2017

Turning Down a Nice Submission

The other day I received a nice submission for KIT.  The author had a remarkable 
bibliography, so I could tell the article was well-researched.  But there were multiple 
reasons why this piece was turned down.  

  • The manuscript was not formatted correctly and the contact information was missing.  Contact information must be present on the first page of a manuscript.  This is fairly standard for any magazine.  
  • The word count exceeded our limit.  We state in our guidelines that we'd like articles to run about 500 words.  Kids are more engaged with shorter pieces.  Going fifty words over the limit is not egregious, but 200 words is simply too long. 
  • The Flesh Kincaid readability tool measured the piece at seventh grade level.  The range of our audience is from first to six grade.  To achieve a readability score more suitable to KIT, writers can reduce the number of compound sentences, explain complex concepts in simple terms, and use grade-appropriate vocabulary. 
  • The subject of the article was too mature for young readers.  This is where writers have to put themselves in the shoes of kids and figure out what they would like to read and know.  For instance, we believe an article that discusses animal reproduction is  not appropriate for our magazine.   

It's very possible if this writer had taken a look at our guidelines, a rejection could have been avoided.  

But, all is not lost for this writer.  In this case, we provided reasons for the rejection, not the typical "the piece is not a good fit for us."  And this writer has the opportunity to submit again.  KIT believes that every writer deserves a second chance.  We promote writers and encourage them to perfect their submissions.  It is our mission to help writers succeed in reaching their publication dreams.