Justin Chanda joined the editorial staff at Simon & Schuster in 2005 after an eight year stint at HarperCollins. A graduate of New York University, Justin was named publisher of the S&S Books for Young Readers imprint in 2007 and McElderry Books and Atheneum Books for Young Readers in 2009. He oversees the publication of two hundred and fifty titles per year ranging from the youngest picture book to the edgiest YA. He is keenly interested in publishing books that are equal parts commercial and literary, books that make a contribution to the tradition, while truly entertaining kids. Aside from having the honor of working with the best editorial staff in the industry, he also has the opportunity to edit some of its best talent, including the likes of: Jon Scieszka, Loren Long, Kenneth Oppel, Patricia MacLachlan, Peter Brown, Michael Ian Black, Karma Wilson, Debbie Ohi and Morgan Matson. Justin has been a board member of the Children’s Book Council and is also an adjunct instructor for the NYU Graduate Publishing Program.
Karen Wojtyla, Vice President and Editorial Director
Karen Wojtyla is looking primarily for literary fiction with commercial appeal for a variety of ages, as well as some poetry and narrative nonfiction.
Karen has edited a diverse list of writers including New York Times bestsellers such as Cassandra Clare’s The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices series and Holly Black’s Modern Faerie Tales. She has edited many novels from Newbery Honor winner Zilpha Keatley Snyder, most recently William's Midsummer Dream, the National Book Award winning Goblin Secrets by William Alexander, and the nonfiction A Savage Thunder from Newbery Honor winner Jim Murphy. Picture books she has edited include bestselling author/artist Karen Katz’s Now I'm Big! and acclaimed illustrator Petra Mathers’ The McElderry Book of Mother Goose.
Her upcoming titles include Newbery winner Susan Cooper’s Ghost Hawk; Holly Black’s Doll Bones; Moira Young’s third volume in the Dust Lands trilogy, Raging Star; Susan Fletcher’s Falcon in the Glass; debut YA novel Chantress from Amy Butler Greenfield; and a new trilogy from bestselling author Cassandra Clare, The Dark Artifices.
Anne Zafian, Vice President and Deputy Publisher
Ruta Rimas joined Simon & Schuster in July 2011. She edits and acquires picture books, middle-grade novels, and teen novels for both the Atheneum and Margaret K. McElderry imprints. Prior to S&S, Ruta worked for the Balzer + Bray imprint at HarperCollins. She’s had the honor and privilege of working with some of the most talented authors and illustrators in the industry including Kimberly Derting, Claire Caterer, Elissa Brent Weissman, Melissa Wiley, Lucy Cooke, M.M. Vaughan, Janet Ruth Young, and many others. Ruta loves characters that come to life on the pages, stories that resonate long after the last page is read, and fiction that challenges our preconceived notions of the world.
Dani is an Assistant Editor at S&S Books for Young Readers, Margaret K. McElderry Books, and Atheneum Books for Young Readers. She spent her time growing up reading just a little too much, but managed to squeeze in an English degree and Classics minor at the University of California: Irvine, internships at Scholastic, Levine Greenberg Literary Agency, and Bloosmbury USA Children’s Books, as well as an M.S. in Publishing at New York University. Dani edited Two Lies and a Spy by Kat Carlton (coming in Fall ’13) and, while assisting Justin Chanda, the VP and Publisher, has worked with authors and illustrators such as Michael Ian Black, Peter Brown, Jane Chapman, Carter Goodrich, Bruce Eric Kaplan, Dan Krall, Loren Long, Patricia MacLachlan, Morgan Matson, Debbie Ridpath Ohi, Kenneth Oppel, Jon Scieszka, and Karma Wilson. When she’s not busy, she still loves to get lost in a great story with strong, likeable characters, particularly YA and middle grade fiction of the fantasy, historical, fairy tale adaptation, and romance variety, as well as sweet and/or quirky picture books.
Annie Nybo, Editorial Assistant
Annie Nybo joined Margaret K. McElderry Books in 2012 and assists Karen Wojtyla. Prior to joining S&S, she worked as an editorial assistant at Clarion Books, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and as a reader for Transatlantic Literary Agency. She’s been honored to have the opportunity to work with many talented authors and illustrators such as Susan Cooper, William Alexander, Gary D. Schmidt, Jasper Fforde, Hilary McKay, Susan Fletcher, Cassandra Clare, and Ellen Hopkins. She held an internship at Dial Books for Young Readers, Penguin Group, and graduated magna cum laude from Allegheny College. Annie is looking for voice-driven literary fiction across all genres; witty, well-crafted picture books; and brilliantly original graphic novels.
OUR EDITORIAL TEAM
Margaret K. McElderry Books