Bywater Books Manuscript Submission Guidelines

At Bywater Books, we’re always looking for well-written commercial fiction targeted to lesbian readers. We are especially interested the following fiction and non-fiction categories.

  • Romance, Mystery, Action/Thriller, Science-fiction/Fantasy, General Fiction, Cross-genre, Memoir, Essay, and Autobiography/Biography

We do not publish poetry or erotica.

Please submit either your completed manuscript or 50-page sample according to the instructions outline in Step 1 below. Manuscripts should be approximately 60,000 words—anything with significantly fewer words can be considered to be a novella, so please keep that in mind.

We consider a submission of a manuscript or writing sample to be an offer from the author to enter into contract negotiations. Because of this, it is imperative that the person submitting to us should have the legal right to do so, that no other publisher is currently considering its acquisition, and that the rights we may wish to acquire are available. As a small press we can’t invest the acquisition resources only to find that the project is under contract or otherwise unavailable. For this reason, we cannot accept simultaneous submissions. If there is any issue with the rights to the manuscript you are submitting, please include an explanation of the issues in the section titled Other Pertinent Information in the online manuscript submission form.

Step 1

When preparing to submit your manuscript, please make sure it follows the manuscript submission guidelines below:

  • Read our tips on manuscript submission
  • Send at least the first 50 pages—complete manuscripts are also accepted.
  • Use 1-inch margins on all sides.
  • Use 12 point Times New Roman, or another clean, legible font.
  • Double-space your document.
  • Number all pages.
  • Have the author’s name and title of manuscript on the first page.
  • We accept .doc, .pdf, .txt, .rtf , and .docx files.
  • Include with your manuscript submission:
    • A 1-2 page synopsis
    • A short author’s bio

Step 2

Complete the online manuscript submission form, which includes uploading your file. We suggest that you print a copy of the submission receipt that will be displayed on the successful completion of the form. If you have questions, please reach out to us via our Contact Us link—please reference you manuscript title.

For Bywater Prize for Fiction, click here to use this manuscript submission form

For all other submissions, click here to use this manuscript submission form

Thank you for your interest in Bywater Books!

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