The Tuntun program was founded in 1990 in Korea and hires authors to write board books and picture books in English as part of their EFL (English as a Foreign Language) learners. My books, SHAPES ARE EVERYWHERE, POTTY TIME, and ANIMAL FRIENDS are a part of this program.
Selected writers are paid a flat fee and asked to choose from a list of subjects needed for books in various formats (e.g. lift-the-flap, flip-the-flap, pop-up, fold-out, etc.). If the manuscript meets their needs, the fee is paid. If after revisions, the editors find the manuscript will not work, writers are paid a “Kill-fee.” I found it fun and challenging to work in these different formats, and I fully appreciate Tuntun’s goals:
- to develop children’s emotional, mental and physical capability
- to enrich their sensibility and five senses
- to help them find that books are fun
- to encourage them to be interested in English
- to explore and discover the world through the books
- to spark their imagination and curiosity
Projects like these provide a great way for writers to pass the time between trade book submissions and contracts, or while you search for an agent. I’ve had many requests for these books–especially POTTY TIME–but unfortunately, the catch with Tuntun work-for-hire books is that they are only available in Korean through their various educational programs.