What we do
Salina Bookshelf, founded in 1994 is an independent publisher of multicultural materials which includes textbooks, children's picture books, children's chapter books, informational texts, reference books, audio books and language learning materials. We specialize in dual language books in Navajo/English and Hopi/English, as well as textbooks used to teach Navajo language in schools.
Authentic depictions of Navajo life, both contemporary and traditional, are portrayed throughout the entire collection of materials offered. These resources have broad appeal in classrooms, adult centers, libraries, and homes to teach the Navajo language and culture.
Our Authors and Illustrators
- Navajo Times
- Evangeline Parsons Yazzie
- Margaret Speas
- Anita Poleahla
- Seth Muller
- Nancy Bo Flood
- Vee F. Browne
- Seraphine G. Yazzie
- Jessie Ruffenach
- Patricia Hruby Powell
- Roberta John
- Jann A. Johnson
- Baje Whitethorne Sr.
- Deborah W. Trotter
- Veronica Tsinajinnie
- Marjorie W. Thomas
- Nedra Emery
- Verna Clinton
- Kathy Eckles Hooker
- Carolyn Niethammer
- Irvy W. Goossen
- Daniel W. Vandever
- Rex Lee Jim
- Rick Abasta
Submission Guidelines for Writers
Thank you for your interest in Salina Bookshelf. Salina is an independent publishing house with a regional and topical emphasis on Navajo content, but in recent years, we started to explore other Native American content that encourages stories by a specific tribe. Our goal is selecting a manuscript that accurately or authentically depicts Navajo or Native American culture and people in such a powerful way in children’s books, textbooks, novels, reference books, and electronic media. We continue to embrace the long tradition of helping students, parents, educators, and anyone who wants to study and learn the Navajo or Hopi languages, including understanding culture. According to Dr. Evangeline Parsons Yazzie, “They say that a key to the revival of a language is to ensure that the next generation transmits the language and culture to their children.” With the transmission of language and culture through books, we welcome authentic voices of many contemporary Native American writers today who are powerful witnesses and voices of their Native American experiences, livelihood, and way of life.
To get a better sense of what we publish, please explore our website, www.salinabookshelf.com, to determine if your work is a good fit with our publishing program.
PICTURE BOOKS, EARLY READERS, AND CHAPTER BOOKS
Our focus is on fiction (realistic and historical) and nonfiction centering on Navajo or Native American children/people for readers ages 0 to 5 and 6 to 12. We especially appreciate stories that reflect children’s traditional or cultural experiences and identity groups with science, nature, math, social studies, or history topics.
- Babies ages for ages 0-3 is on average 16 pages and 50 words.
- Picture books for ages 3-6 is on average 32 pages and under 1000 words.
- Picture story books for ages 4 and up is on average 32 pages and 100-2500 words.
- Early Chapter books for ages 6-9 is on average 64-80 pages; for ages 7-10 is on average 12,000 words.
(Source: From Inspiration to Publication: How to Succeed as a Children’s Writer)
MIDDLE-GRADE AND YOUNG ADULT
Our focus is on fiction and narrative nonfiction centering on the lives of Navajo or Native Americans. We are interested in both middle grade stories for ages 8 to 12 and young adult stories for ages 12 to 18.
- Middle grade is from 20,000 – 55,000, depending on the subject matter and age range, and the word count of these books has been trending up in recent years.
- With upper middle grade, you can aim for 40,000 – 55,000 words.
- With a simpler middle grade idea, shoot for 20,000 – 35,000 words.
In all submissions, we are looking for creative, well-written, authentic Navajo or Native American stories with a distinct voice and/or an imaginative approach to storytelling that will appeal to young readers. Stories should have a strong storyline and main characters who are human.
For poetry collections, we ask for at least 30 poems for a complete collection with at least 60 pages of poetry. Provide a theme within the cover letter that best explains your inspiration behind writing the collection. Separate each poem with a new page. Poetry can be submitted physically with guidelines below or sent to firstname.lastname@example.org in a word document or pdf file.
How to Submit a Manuscript
Your manuscripts should be typed and submitted via mail or email.
Also, the manuscript should be accompanied by a One-Page Cover Letter that includes
- Brief biography of the author
- The author’s publishing history and inspiration behind the manuscript
- Page count and word count of the manuscript
Submission can be sent to:
Salina Bookshelf, Inc. Multicultural Publishing
1120 W. University Ave., Suite 102
Flagstaff, AZ 86001
Electronic submission can be sent to: email@example.com
Please do not send a self-addressed return envelope or postcard, as materials will not be returned. We will respond to a submission only if we are interested in the manuscript. If you do not hear from us within six months, you may assume that your work does not fit our needs. If you require confirmation of delivery, please send the submission with a US Postal Service Return Receipt.
Also, we are happy to consider your queries and proposals for new projects that fit into our publishing house. If you are interested, send a query letter, proposal, or a complete manuscript, along with information about you as a potential author, by mail or email.
Please send the complete manuscript. Do not include illustrations. Do not send original or irreplaceable materials.
Our manuscript review process is once a year. In our effort to provide children and teachers with the highest quality materials possible we have instituted an annual review process for all new manuscripts. This process allows for consideration of each manuscript submitted. Manuscript submissions are due each year by June 1st.
Deadline: June 1st
Lexile Reading Levels
Lexile Reading Levels are way to match student with texts that match their reading ability. This is valuable to teachers or parents to match readability level to each specific student. A Lexile level is determined by a school-administered test.
Salina Bookshelf Books with Lexile Level
- Ages 5-11
- Johonaa’ei: Bringer of Dawn – 600
- Zinnia: How the Corn was Saved – 650
- The Navajo Year – 625
- Frog Brings Rain – 675
- The Stone Cutter and the Navajo Maiden – 700
- The Three Little Sheep – 700
- A Summer’s Trade – 700
- Proud to be a Blacksheep– 725
- Little Woman Warrior who Came Home – 850
- Ages 12-16
- Keeping the Rope Straight – 1000