Publishing Question: Fairy Tales for Children?

This is a question for all you publishing nerds out there (our big, rowdy family):

Let’s say, hypothetically, someone – let’s call him, I don’t know, “Joseph” – has an upper-elementary-level fairy tale he’d like to see published. And he’d like to know if anyone knows of agencies, publishing houses, magazines, or whatnot who might be interested in such a piece.

Where might you, hypothetically, direct him?

Below are the first two sections of said hypothetical piece:


An icy northern island
Sustains a stranded boat,
Eight rows of beans and onions, and
A flock of shaggy goats.

The North Wind makes his home there,
That ship unfit to sail.
Its rooms are cramped and gloomy, and
Its beams are rather frail.

When he comes home, his airstream
Makes all the timbers freeze,
And all the cabins’ walls to groan
Like old, arthritic knees.


The North Wind keeps three sisters
Washed to him by the waves;
Three orphan-girls, he raised them to
Tend house while he’s away.

“I’m hungry!” North Wind bellows,
“Who made the evening meal?”
Amelia says, “I cooked it all!
My work, and my idea!”

Alexa laughs, “How dreary;
I stole away and played!”
While Anna sets the table, no
Attention sought or paid.


Vignette: homeschool fatigue

This is a vignette to begin a story idea I had a couple of years back. I like the tone so far, and I’d welcome any thoughts about the characters and rendering of setting.

“Sam, are you respecting me?”

Oh, no. Sam looked up from the cell diagram he’d doodled into a Martian colony. His mom stood with her hands on her hips, her eyes rimmed with patience fatigue. Sophia smirked at him from across the table.

“Um, no?” he said. He tried to cover his paper without looking like he was trying to cover his paper. “Sorry.”

How were you not respecting me?” his mom said.

“I, uh – I wasn’t listening while you were teaching?”

“Exactly. You weren’t listening while I was teaching. If we’re going to make homeschooling work, we need to respect one another. Okay, Sam?”

“Okay. I’m sorry.”

“Good. Now Sophia, can you tell me what the mitochondria in the cell do?”

Sam made a halfhearted effort to keep listening and then gave it up. He’d learned the parts of a cell two years ago, but had to sit through the lesson with Sophia even though she was a year older than he. All she cared about was sports. Every hour on the hour, Sophia lamented no longer being at a school to play soccer. Mom still hadn’t figured out how to make her care love learning like her boys did.

And now Edward, who was only fourteen, was practically done with school. He’d homeschooled from like age six, when he’d taught himself Greek. This year he mainly just programmed mods for Minecraft and condescended to his younger siblings.

Sam was smart, but not that smart. He had occasional fits of brilliance, like the cytotopographic spree of 2012, but they didn’t really last. He got distracted easily. He turned things into Martian colonies. He looked out the window to the new neighbors’ house.