Thursday, April 17, 2008

Gifts II

Gifts won these awards!
2008 National Parenting Publications Awards (NAPPA): Gold Award
2008 Mom's Choice Awards: Silver Recipient, Special & Exceptional Needs

Gifts II: A contract has been signed with Woodbine, and the book is slated for release in spring 2010. Submission guidelines below. Note: They won't be including any stories in vol. II about children featured in vol. I.

Photo contest: Woodbine is hosting a contest to solicit cover photos for Gifts II--guidelines Below

NDSC Convention: Jennifer Graf Groneberg and the editor of GIFTS Kathryn Soper will be presenting a New Parents' Survival workshop in Boston this summer. Also Woodbine is setting up a Gifts signing; details to come.

The second volume of Gifts will include stories about individuals with Down syndrome written by a wide variety of people, including:

family members (such as parents, siblings, and grandparents)
friends (such as neighbors, babysitters, and other associates)
professionals (such as teachers, doctors and nurses, and therapists)


Because most of the stories in the first volume of Gifts are mothers' accounts of adjusting to their young child's diagnosis, Gifts Volume II will include stories that offer other perspectives and experiences. We are especially interested in stories about school-age children, adolescents, and adults. While mothers' stories in these categories will be considered for inclusion, the collection will emphasize stories written by other family members, friends, and professionals.


Please write about one of the following gifts:

Acceptance - Describe how this individual exemplifies healthy acceptance of self, of others, and of life in general. How has he or she helped you to make peace with the circumstances in your life?

Courage- Describe how this individual has shown courage in the face of difficulty. What has he or she taught you about meeting life's challenges?

Friendship- Describe what this individual has taught you about being a true friend. How does he or she exemplify the values of kindness, cooperation, and/or trust?

Awareness -Describe how this individual has opened your eyes. As a result of your relationship with him or her, what truths do you now understand? What beauties can you now see?

Joy- Describe how this individual brightens your days. How has he or she brought love, laughter, and/or happiness into your life?

Your story should describe how an individual with Down syndrome has enriched your life. Your story must be unpublished, or if it has been published you must own the full rights to the piece.

Your story must contain a clear main idea supported by examples.

Your story should employ creative writing techniques such as the use of descriptive language, symbolism and imagery, and dialogue. Remember the first rule of creative writing: show, don’t tell.

Your submission should have a descriptive title, an engaging beginning, and a concise, memorable ending.

Compose your story in a plain, 12-pt. font using a word processing program. Single-space your text. Leave an empty line between paragraphs; do not indent or use any tabs. No handwritten submissions will be accepted.

Submissions must be between 500 and 2000 words in length (1-4 single-spaced pages).

Include the following information in the upper left corner of the first page of your story: Full name, street address, phone number, email address, story title, topic category, and word count.
Do not send your file as an attachment. Copy your entire file and paste it into the body of an email. Put your last name and the title of your story in the email subject line, like this: mylastname_mystorytitle.
Send the email to
Submission Deadline NOW EXTENDED to September 1, 2008.

You will be notified through email regarding your submission's status by January 1, 2009.

If you have questions, please contact Kathryn Lynard Soper, editor, at




Gifts: Volume II is a collection of true stories describing the gifts of acceptance, courage, friendship, and joy that individuals with Down syndrome bring to the world. Written by friends and family members, as well as professionals who provide care and services, these stories inspire us to recognize the similarities, celebrate the differences, and enjoy the gifts sparked by an extra 21st chromosome.

As the editing for Gifts: Volume II gets underway, Woodbine House is already thinking about the cover! To obtain a wide selection of high quality photos of children with Down syndrome for consideration, Woodbine House will hold a cover photo contest, with a prize of $250 awarded to the photographer of the winning photo.


Subject matter:

Color or B & W photos of children with Down syndrome from early childhood through adolescence. No posed, formal portraits. Send candid, close-up photos of a single child, pair of children (at least 1 with Down syndrome), or child & adult. Outdoor photos preferred
Photos should have VERY LITTLE background clutter, such as toys or furniture

Digital photos taken at your camera’s highest resolution—2400 pixels wide; superfine setting
.jpg or .tif file format
Or sharply focused prints – no slides or negatives
Submission of photos:

Email digital photo files as attachments to In the body of the email include name, address, phone, and email address
Or mail digital photo files on CD-ROM or photo prints to: Gifts Photo Contest, Woodbine House, 6510 Bells Mill Rd., Bethesda, MD 20817. Label CD or the back of each photo with contact information, including email address
Name photo files as follows: lastname_firstname/1 (change # if submitting more than 1 photo)
Photo release:

Submit a photo release form (see below) for each identifiable child who appears in the photo(s) you send. If children other than your own appear in the photo, their parents need to fill out a separate form. Adults over 18 shown in photos should also sign release forms. Email or mail to the above address or FAX to 301-897-5838
Contest deadline:

October 15, 2008

Announcement of winner:

January 5, 2009. Winner will be announced on and chosen by Woodbine House staff and Gifts II editor, Kathryn Soper
Prize for winner:

Other information:

DO NOT SEND IRREPLACABLE PHOTOS, as photos will not be returned
Each photographer can submit up to 5 photos
Any questions, contact Fran Marinaccio at 800-843-7323 or

*Gifts II will be published in 2010 (pub date subject to change)


I, , of (address), hereby consent to and approve use by Woodbine House, Inc., of photographs of (circle all that apply): myself and/or my child(ren), ___________________,

______________________________, and I hereby grant to it, and its assigns and licensees, the perpetual rights to use and re-use such photographs: (check all that apply):

____ on book cover and for marketing purposes associated with GIFTS II

____ on book cover and/or interior pages and for marketing purposes

associated with GIFTS II

____ on book cover and/or interior pages; for marketing purposes

associated with GIFTS II; and for general Woodbine House marketing

purposes, such as catalogs, brochures, and other books

I hereby release and discharge Woodbine House, Inc., from any and all claims and demands arising out of or in connection with the use of the photographs, including without limitation any and all claims for libel or violation of any right of publicity or privacy.

I am of full age and have the right to contract in my own name, as well as to contract for my minor children in this regard.

Please provide the following information (we cannot use your photographs without it):

Name: ____________________________________________________

Address: __________________________________________________

City/State/Zip: ______________________________________________

Telephone: _________________________________________________

Email: _____________________________________________________

Date: ______________________________________________________


1 comment:

Stephanie said...

Holy moly. I guess I need to pay attention to the Gifts Blog, I am out of the loop. I think I may submit a photo perhaps....did you submit a story or photo?