How to Buy a Picture Book (without Buying a Picture Book)

My first book comes out on Tuesday. Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast. You’re probably tired of hearing about it by now, so lucky for you, I don’t plan on talking about it in this post.

Today it’s how to support picture book authors and illustrators.

One of the best things you can do is buy their book(s).

But what if you’re not in the market for picture books at this time in your life, so the idea of buying one doesn’t really interest you? Maybe it doesn’t fit your budget. Or maybe you have an irrational fear of cute animals and anthropomorphic breakfast foods.
Book Shelf with Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast

Here are ten ways to support picture book authors and illustrators:

  1. Give the book as a gift. You probably know someone who might like it. Give it to her/him. Or donate it to your library.
  2. Request that your local library purchase a copy. This can be done in person or often in an online form.
  3. Reserve and borrow it from the library. Increased circulation of books is noticed by librarians. They are smart people.
  4. Review the book. On goodreads. On Amazon. On Text reviews are even more valuable than just star-ratings.
  5. Talk about the book with librarians and booksellers. There are a lot of great books out there. Get this book on their radar.
  6. Talk about the book with friends. Or parents of your child’s friends. Or your child’s teacher. Or strangers on the street.
  7. Share the book on social media. Tweet about it. Blog about it. Post on Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, Instagram, MySpace, etc. about it. Share the cover image. If you see it in the wild, snap a picture and share that. And tag the author or illustrator (or both). We love that!
  8. Share the author or illustrator’s posts on social media. Follow them on social media sites and share with your networks.
  9. Read the book in public. Like at the park. Or in a restaurant. Or the airport.
  10. Make your own fan book trailer. And post to YouTube. If that’s your thing.

Note: I’m not the first to write a post like this. Here are a few other posts which have similar and more detailed info. Please check them out:

Also Note: These ideas can apply to any type of book, not just picture books.

Thanks for reading. And thank you very much for supporting picture book authors and illustrators, however you choose to do so.

16 thoughts on “How to Buy a Picture Book (without Buying a Picture Book)

  1. When my book budget is exhausted, I rely heavily on the library and request the purchase of books they don’t have. We also randomly check out books by authors we know via online and their books, so are actively used.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Great work, Stacy! I’m pretty sure I took out close to 1,000 books from the library last year. I’ll be they actually keep track of that. Must ask librarian…


    1. Thanks, Darshana! I’m a big fan of the library suggestion form. And I know that when someone requests a book from my library that my library doesn’t own via inter-library loans, they take notice and consider purchasing it.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I have created a Facebook page to also help promote picture books (as I myself am a Picture Book Author) – you may feel free to post your books there. The site is at I also have a Goodreads group (under the same name) and will hopefully have a website up shortly. Feel free to connect if you like.


  3. Also, just for those in the MA area re: Libraries – some libraries will not carry your picture book if you have the following: Cutouts, diagrams, paper dolls or things that kids can do activities with. They are afraid of kids cutting up the original book.


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