Kidari Publishing Co.
Ever Captivating Picture Books that Fascinate Readers
The best thing about picture books is that they can be appreciated by any age group, from kids to adults. Furthermore, they can be interpreted differently, not to mention give different impressions depending on the age of the readers, gender, and background. Kidari Publishing produces a variety of fun picture books that give pleasure across the generations from 0- to 80-year-olds through its brands “Kidari,” “MoraeR,” and “A Very Good Day.” Following is an interview with Kim Sang-Il, president of Kidari Publishing Co.. This publisher has been growing up with its readers since 2004 as a midsized publisher of picture books that presents fun books to children and gives adults a break and adds comfort to their demanding lives.
Please introduce Kidari Publishing Co.
Kidari Publishing Co. was founded in 2004. We published about 10 titles a year in the early years, and today it’s gone up to about 25, including picture books, children’s books, and non-fiction books. In view of the year of establishment and the annual publications, Kidari Publishing Co. can be called a medium-sized publisher specializing in children’s books among around 100 other publishers in the same field. While we put the emphasis on keeping our readership stable, Kidari Publishing Co. aims to become Korea’s representative publishing house specializing in children’s books in the coming years.
What do you think are “good books” and “good writing”?
Our primary readers are children 0-13 years of age, including toddlers and elementary school students. The focus may differ depending on the readers you target. We think books should be entertaining to read to entice children. No matter how helpful a book is, with as many good lessons it provides, it will not be welcome if readers do not find interest in it. For this reason, Kidari Publishing thinks that good books are the ones that motivate children to be interested, corresponding to their level. We seek “enjoyment” in various materials when planning books and recruiting authors.
What do you see when choosing authors and works?
We believe it is important that artworks touch the hearts of their consumers (audience, listeners, readers, etc.) regardless of their form. However, books are produced differently from other works of art. As books are supplied to the market through a mass-production system called printing, it is essential to secure advertising and merchandising rather than scarcity. Like I said before, boring books don’t get read. In this regard, we give priority to writers who create amusing works that make readers happy.
We believe that “fun” is the number one factor in appealing to children.
Please tell us about the three brands of Kidari Publishing Co.
The first brand, “Kidari,” is the main brand. Kidari publishes books in various fields such as picture books, children’s books, young adult fiction, non-fiction picture books, and liberal art books for children.
What do you think is the charming point of picture books?
The greatest charm in picture books is that they can be enjoyed by all generations. There are many picture books that were originally made for 3-year-olds but are also enjoyed by 10-, 15-, 20-, 30-, 40-, and even 50-year-olds, where they relate themselves to the story, have fun, and be touched.
Are there books you would like to recommend to our subscribers?
There are three books that perfectly match the keyword “K-book.”
1. From Busan to London by Train
2. An Old Seal Grandmother
3. The Gyuri Goes to an Art Museum
From Busan to London by Train, An Old Seal Grandmother, The Gyuri Goes to an Art Museum
Can you give us a brief walk through your new titles?
2. Rice, Bread, and Noodle
3. A Grandmother Storyteller’s Adventure
Holidays, Rice, Bread, and Noodle, A Grandmother Storyteller’s Adventure
Please tell us about the brand “7080 picture books” and some of its books for grownups.
A total of twelve books published under the series title Story Star Candy Series, which we have developed for all generations to read and communicate with one another, set in the daily lives in the industrialization era after the 1960s, including the lives and stories of individuals, families, and neighbors.
1. Letter Grandma
2. Catch a Mouse
3. Moon Train
Letter Grandma, Catch a Mouse, Moon Train
Why did Kidari Publishing publish picture books about the 1970s and 80s, and why do you think that the people born in that period should read picture books?
We often feel nostalgic in our daily lives, regardless of the rapidity of modernization. Marketing strategies have targeted such a phenomenon in various fields such as TV drama, products, services, and travel. Realizing our ideas for making books – especially children’s books and picture books – about nostalgia was Story Star Candy Series. The 12 topics, including cartoon cafes, sprinkler carts, anti-rat drives, letters, and baseball, are the best mirrors that reflect how people lived in that period. They bring nostalgia to adults about their childhood and give children a glimpse of how their parents and grandparents lived as young children. The basic idea is that we want to give the two generations the opportunity to communicate through these books.
I hope people don’t believe that picture books are just for kids.
Any last comments?
Today, Korea is showing talent in a variety of artistic fields worldwide. The picture books joined other leaders of K culture, such as films, K-pop, art, and music. Picture books have less of a language barrier. Creative Korean picture book authors with great potential are spreading their wings worldwide. You can count on them to grow into the future. Kidari Publishing will work hard on supporting them as well.
Organized by Lee Ji-Hyeon
#Kidari#Picture Book#MoraeR#Very Good Day