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Schwartz and Wade... THE INTERVIEW!


LEE WADE and ANNE SCHWARTZ are the Vice Presidents and Publishers of the Random House imprint, Schwartz and Wade. They are editors, true book folk, and now friends of Books Inc. Kids! Below is an interview with these bookish pros!

Books Inc. Kids: What is your favorite picture book that YOU DIDN'T publish?

LW—I love any picture book by Kevin Henkes or Peggy Rathman—especially Lily's Purple Plastic Purse, Chrysanthemum and 5 minutes till bedtime. And one of my all time favorite picture books is Can't Sleep by Chris Raschka. The reassuring message in that book can even help the adult me get to sleep.

AS—I second Lee’s choices, and add these to the mix:  I’ve always loved James Marshall, particularly the George and Martha books, which are slightly subversive and work for both kids and adults.  I also adore the Little Bear books by Else Holmelund Minarek and Maurice Sendak.  I grew up with them, read them to my own kids, and they still resonate with me today.  And finally, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Geoffrey Hayes’s amazing, hilarious, spot-on books about Patrick.

BIK: Can you spill the beans on any super-secret projects that are coming up?

AS and LW—well, if we spilled the beans, then the projects wouldn’t be super-secret, would they?!  Suffice it to say, that we have a VERY funny, touching book about a sloth in our future.  


BIK: What is your favorite stage of the editing process?

LW—I love it when I struggle to come up with specific advice to clarify a concern for an author or illustrator, and what comes back is WAY better than anything I could have imagined.

AS—For me, it’s that moment when I’m reading a manuscript by an unpublished author and I realize… it’s FANTASTIC—I’ve completely fallen in love with it!  It happens very rarely, but when it does…WOW.


BIK: What advice would you give to young, aspiring editors?

LW- I would say, spend a lot of time reading books that others are publishing—especially the ones that are well received, because it's good to understand the market. Also, if you see a germ of something you like in a manuscript, don't be afraid to work with the author to work, work and rework to get it to a publishable point. 

AS—I would say, trust your instincts; respond to what’s on the page and go with that gut reaction.  And if you love something, champion it, no matter what.


BIK: You're throwing a dance party. Obviously we're invited. Is it Disco, 80's or Polka?

LW- I'd have to say 80's, it reminds me of college—and I did a lot of dancing in college. 

AS—Dare I say it?  The polka!  (I  can pretend I’m in a Jane Austin novel.)


So, you heard it here! Anne Schwartz is throwing a Polka party.