What is #20truePBs?
Learn a bit about who we are and why we're here.
By Meeg Pincus
Author of Winged Wonders (March 2020)
Co-organizer of #20truePBs with Nancy Churnin
People in children's publishing have called this moment "a renaissance in children's nonfiction." These past few years have brought a fresh, new spin on the old view of nonfiction picture books.
No longer dry and boring, the nonfiction picture books on today's shelves are now creative, colorful, and innovative in how they present stories of real people, places and things. They draw kids in. They focus on moments, themes, or little-known people or places. They excite librarians, educators and parents. They're works of art.
We Are Creators of True-Story Picture Books
Each of us in this group of authors and illustrators is excited to be a part of this new age of children's nonfiction picture books, and to bring our books into the world in 2020.
We've all been working for at least two or three years on our books: researching (lots of researching!), writing drafts, polishing manuscripts, securing literary agents, selling to traditional publishers, creating sketches, crafting final illustrations, editing, strategizing, and bringing it all together.
Our goals now: To share these books with children! To pique their interest and curiosity in the people and places we've researched and presented! To inspire them with true stories that make a difference in the world!
As co-founder of this group (in 2019, with author Jess Rinker), I also have the goal of featuring a real diversity of subjects and creators, to highlight people from groups often underrepresented in books and the teaching of history and other topics (women, BIPOC people, LGBTQ+ people, disabled people, folks of various religions & more & all the intersections of these!). We aimed to have most of our #20truePBs books feature diverse subjects, and for the books' creators to embody diversity is as well. We want to spark and continue conversations about diversity in children's nonfiction, on the page and behind the scenes. (Please also see our 19PBbios books!)
We need to highlight more voices from the margins, to even out the scales and teach a broader, more inclusive history—nonfiction PBs are a great place to do this!
We Invite You On Our Journey
If you're reading this, you probably are excited about nonfiction PBs and diverse children's literature, too. Are you a librarian, an educator, a fellow kidlit professional, a parent? What excites you about these true stories for kids?
We hope to engage with you on this journey in 2020, as we launch each of our books. We hope to be in conversation with you, whether it's online, at your school, or at a conference. We hope you will win books in our giveaways, and share our books with the children in your life.
We're so grateful you're here. We're so grateful to be in 2020, in this golden age of children's nonfiction. Thanks for joining us on this journey.