Friday, February 11, 2011

Publisher Interview with Lynda Burch of Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.

Getting to know authors, illustrators, publishers, and editors through interviews is an instrumental way of learning about the publishing industry. Today I welcome Lynda Burch, Founder and Publisher of Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc. I have quite the soft spot in my heart for Lynda and not just because she is the first publisher who offered me a book contract, but more for the heartwarming person she is.

DMc: You are the principle owner of Guardian Angel Publishing. What inspired you to create your company?

LB: When I incorporated there were only a few children’s eBook companies and I saw a real need for them because I knew they would be the wave of the future. We started in eBooks and quickly advanced into print books, too.

DMc: How many submissions do you get each month and what is your procedure for dealing with them?

LB: We are only open to submissions from April 1 to Oct 1 each year but I still get close to a thousand. I try to work my way through them each day to get quick responses back but that doesn’t always happen. Sometimes I’ll get a backlog of 100 or so. Usually in the first page or so I’ll know if the story will work for us.

DMc: With the ever changing world of publishing, what are your thoughts on e-book publishing versus traditional publishing?

LB: I’ve always been a firm believer in eBook potential and I have kind of a nice “I told you so” attitude since watching the recent explosion of their sales. :)

DMc: Please share with us your words of advice to the writer who is yet to be published?

LB: Get into a critique group and learn your trade. Not everyone can write for kids- and believe me when I say not everyone is a poet!

DMc: For a picture book submission can a writer recommend an illustrator or does Guardian Angel Publishing assign an illustrator from their pool of resources?

LB: Some people come to me with art complete by a non GAP artist and sometimes they have someone in mind to do their art. Sometimes I accept that and sometimes I don’t- it really depends on the artist’s style or if GAP can work with them contractually.

DMc: What is the most common mistake you see with submissions?

LB: People don’t send in their best work. They don’t check their work for missing punctuation, misspelled words and poor sentence or paragraph structure. That makes for quick rejection letters.

DMc: Do you recommend a writer have their manuscript professionally edited before submitting?

LB: No offense to all editing services but I’ve seen some mss with professional expensive editing that had to be totally re-edited here. Some have had a thousand commas! {cringe}
Mainly because: # 1 writing for kids is a specialty, # 2(a biggie to me) punctuation has changed over the years and we no longer use the standard Chicago Book of Style, # 3 That may be fine for collegiate work but not for kids. Some editors may be technically proficient but lacking in other areas.

DMc: A signature request I like to ask every author, illustrator, editor, etc., I interview is for the individual to share with us a tidbit from their lives that the reader will find either humorous or surprising. Lynda, can you please share one with us?

LB: I have set a computer on fire once- literally! Ever hear of crash & burn? I’ve done it! Smoke and fire! Burned up a motherboard – melted that sucker. You should have seen me dive under my desk and unplug everything—well, maybe not.

Lynda thank you for taking the time out to be with us today it’s been a blast!

Visit Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc. to view and learn about their children’s books.

Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.


  1. Great to hear more about GAP, mistakes you see, and learn a bit more about you. I truly can't imagine you diving under a desk, but fire might be enough to do it.

    I am honored and feel so blessed to be one of GAP's writers. Thanks being the publisher who released my first book.

    I know the future holds many wonderful things for GAP and all involved with it.


  2. This was a wonderful look at GAP and Lynda, thanks for sharing. GAP is one publisher that I strive to submit to as I am sure many other talented authors dream of.


  3. It takes courage to start up a new company, especially in this economy. Good luck with it!

  4. What terrific information. Thank you, Lynda and Donna!

    Karin Larson

  5. Donna,

    Thank you for sharing this interview. I am so blessed that Lynda gave me my first traditional contract. Lynda,You are certainly a woman of great talent, and determination. I am happy to be part of GAP.

    Nicole Weaver

  6. What an interesting and informative interview! Great job, Ladies!

  7. I love, love, love publisher interviews. It's great to read about what happens behind the scenes. :)

  8. Great interview!

    Hmm. Interesting observation about freelance editors. I agree some don't have an idea how children's writing is.

  9. This is wonderful, and I just loved reading your interview Donna and Lynda.

    Being affiliated with GAP is one of the highlights of my professional life. It is an honor to be one of the Guardian Angels and a distinct honor to know you, Lynda.

  10. Over a thousand manuscript submissions - God love ya!


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