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Cape Ann Reads

Logo design by Ashlee Curcuru, Teen Art Guild (TAG).
Logo design by Ashlee Curcuru, Teen Art Guild (TAG).

A Cooperative Project

The art of children’s literature is strong throughout Cape Ann and part of its rich cultural history. The four Cape Ann public libraries aim to keep it that way by promoting literacy and arts. Gloucester Lyceum & Sawyer Free Public Library, Rockport Public Library, Manchester-By-The-Sea Public Library, and TOHP Burnham Library Essex are pleased to announce and launch a yearlong innovative community reading program, CAPE ANN READS, designed around a single new original picture book.
The initiative is simple and local. Throughout 2016 the libraries will coordinate special events and a contest for original picture book submissions. The libraries are coordinating with several regional organizations such as Cape Ann Museum (CAM), Cape Ann Art Haven, Cape Ann YMCA, Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce, Manchester Historical Museum, Local Cultural Councils, area schools, Pathways for Children, and First R Foundation. The libraries are partners in their downtown cultural districts, special areas designated by the Massachusetts Cultural Council.
For more information visit the Cape Ann Reads website.

See an interview on Cape Ann Reports of the four Cape Ann Library Directors about this innovative initiative!


Please check the Cape Ann Reads program calendar for upcoming events!

Cape Ann Reads T-Shirts

Be fashionable and support this year of free picture book themed programming and contest!

CAR Tshirt

Adults $15
Children $10

Available at Sawyer Free Library and the other participating institutions!

Picture Book Contest

In recognition of the coming 75th anniversary in 2017 of a Caldecott award for the children’s book, The little house, by Gloucester author/illustrator Virginia Lee Burton, Cape Ann Reads will be holding a children’s picture book contest. It will be open to Cape Ann residents, all ages, students attending school on Cape Ann and people who work on Cape Ann. They will vie for a chance to exhibit, win prizes, and one winning book will be published. The registration deadline is November 15, 2016, submission deadline is December 15, 2016. Judging is to commence in January 2017 (panel to be announced soon.) For more information on registration and submission see Cape Ann Reads.

General guidelines

  • Writers and illustrators must work, go to school, or live on Cape Ann
  • Open to all ages, all levels- this means professional is submitting alongside youth and hobbyist
  • Work must be original
  • Work should be appropriate for children who are prereaders, 2-8 years of age
  • length and media are open and will include a great range in styles (standard picture books are 32pp)

Other information

  • all entries will be submitted online.
  • the author/illustrator name(s) will be hidden
  • submissions with all stages of completion are eligible
  • sumbission will require both text and visual samples, fully realized or incomplete
  • submission should reflect what each applicant feels best conveys their ideas for judging
  • submission could be a storyboard of a picture book
  • submission could be a series of sketches, or a few finished pages with a story outline
  • dummies or thumb-nail submissions are ok and will likely require at least 2-4 finished images to convey visual vision
  • submissions will likely require at least 10pp completed text pages to give idea of story and writing style