The General Things
We're mostly interested in adult fiction. This is simply because it's easier to find female-led fantasy and science fiction in the young adult section and we're looking to help fill a void in adult fiction featuring female protagonists. We might consider young adult manuscripts if the characters are older teenagers.
As much as we love seeing badass women take down the patriarchy, right now, we prefer stories where women don't necessarily have to prove themselves to the men around them. We're looking for egalitarian worlds where women fight for what they want without having to fight against the system, too.
We're not looking for stories where the protagonist is the only female character and the most important relationships in her life are with male characters. There's a little more info in the "Female Characters" section below.
We'll accept past tense or present tense.
We prefer third person over first person.
Romantic elements are fine, but we prefer that the romance not overwhelm the narrative.
We like all types of fantasy but are particularly interested in epic fantasy.
We don't believe "historical accuracy" is possible in fantasy, especially when it's used to justify sexist or racist cultures or characters.
Our idea of a "strong female character" isn't one who's the only woman on the team and has to act like a man to prove herself to the boys. We want complex characters who represent a wide range of womanhood.
We're especially interested in stories where women support other women.
We love stories about different kinds of relationships between women, especially sister relationships.
Because we believe representation in fiction is important, we'd like to see diversity of all types: female characters, characters of color, LGBTQIA characters, characters of different body sizes, characters with disabilities, characters who struggle with mental health issues, and more. If you want to see yourself in fiction, we want to see you, too!
Because we know how frustrating the publishing business can be, we want to make this as easy as possible.
Send your submission to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We accept science-fiction and fantasy manuscripts with female protagonists between 70K and 120K words in length (with wiggle room).
In your email, include a paragraph or two about your book, one about why you wrote it, and one about yourself. Be as informal or as formal as you'd like.
Please include a one-page synopsis of the novel and attach the entire manuscript. (We ask for the whole thing to cut down on time. If we like the first few chapters of a story, we don't want to wait for the rest of it! But if you're not comfortable sending the whole thing, send what you're comfortable with. Sending the whole manuscript is not a guarantee we will read the whole manuscript.)
Response time can vary, but if you haven't heard from us in eight weeks, feel free to send a follow-up inquiry.
If you have any questions, send them to email@example.com.
Why Choose Us?
Small presses, especially ones that are just starting up, aren't right for everyone. What we're really trying to do is help get more stories out there. We'll take care of editing, formatting, and distribution and help out with marketing. We do everything we can to make our books successful, but we don't have the resources that traditional publishers do. If you're not sure you want to take the plunge, we're happy to have a conversation about your needs and expectations as an author. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.