Aspiring authors, we know that it can be disheartening to look out into the abyss of potential publishing houses and only see the same old phrase, “no unsolicited manuscripts accepted.” These days many of the major publishing houses rely on their ties with literary agents and in-house promotions to find new authors. But don’t despair; today we’ve come up with a list of ten places — from off-the-beaten path publishers to special back doors of the big-name houses — that would welcome your query letter, manuscript or submission.
Swoon Romance: If you’ve got a love story that will make readers swoon, Month 9 Books’ romance imprint, Swoon Romance, is currently seeking a range of romance submissions for digital publication. From second chance romance to forbidden love to flirtatious first love, Swoon Romance publishes adult titles with mature scenes as well as Swoom Romance YA (SRYA), titles appropriate for teens. You can view Month 9’s general submissions guidelines here and contact Georgia McBride with any questions about Swoon at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Amazon: Amazon Children’s Publishing is expanding with two new imprints for young readers. Two Lions will publish picture books and middle grade titles, while Skyscape will print young adult stories from new and established writers. You can read more about the imprints here. Authors can direct all queries to email@example.com. Be sure to include the complete manuscript for a picture book and the first three chapters for all other works.
Harlequin: Harlequin’s Love Inspired editors are looking for faith-influenced love stories that will make their hearts flutter. Editors are offering writers a “speed dating” manuscript matching service, where you’ll get to read their “dating” profiles and select the best editor for your story. Then, you can pitch your manuscript to that editor, who will in turn reply with comments. If your manuscript is looking for the perfect match, you can sign up for “Happily Editor After” here. After signing up, you have until May 6 to pick an editor to pitch to and on May 8 editors will be accepting pitches online via Harlequin’s chat room.
Carina Press: If you’re still thinking about submitting a story for Carina Press’ 2013 holiday anthology, it looks like you’ll have a bit more time to submit. The deadline has been extended from March 1 to March 15, giving you a few more weeks to perfect your tale. You can read more about the call and get full submission details here.
Samhain Publishing: Samhain, one of the first digital publishers, has recently expanded their lines and the editors are still have several open calls for their Retro, Horror and Romance imprints. Not only is the publisher seeking throwback love stories reminiscent of 70s and 80s romances, as well as horror fiction, but they’re open to tales from all subgenres of romance and erotica. For more information on each line and how to submit, click here.
Summerside Press: Summerside describes themselves as “a place for romance, discovery, faith and encouragement.” If your story is uplifting and filled with faith, hope and romance, Summerside wants to read it! Submit your inspirational fiction proposal in a single Word document and e-mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org. For details on what each submission should include, click here.
Entangled Publishing: We know finding the right publisher for your story can be hard. You put yourself out there, and often times you never hear back. Well, good news for those unlucky in (publishing) love, Entangled is making the process a whole lot easier with their new submissions system. Writers can now submit their work through a web form and track the progress of their submission, including editor’s comments and more. If you’ve already submitted to Entangled, the publisher encourages you to submit again using the new form. You can read more about it here.
Assent Publishing: Assent’s Breathless Books line is now accepting entries for their Great Romance contest! The contest is open to all romance subgenres (except erotica), and the grand prize winner will receive an Assent Publishing contract, a Kindle Fire, a 1-year membership to RWA and much more! Writers have until April 30 to enter, and you can read the full guidelines and learn how to enter here.
Bold Strokes Books: Bold Strokes is a print and e-book publisher that offers a diverse selection of LGBT fiction for adults and teens, including romance, available from retailers worldwide. The publisher is currently seeking new work, and requests that when submitting you send your full manuscript. If you’ve got a finished story burning a hole under your bed, check our BSB’s submission guidelines here.
Did we miss one of your favorite places to submit work? Let us know in the comments below. For more suggestions of establishments that may be a good fit for your manuscript you can check out our Agents List or our Publishers List. And of course, you can always find author advice, writing tips and more on our Aspiring Authors Page!