Finding the Perfect Indie Press in Oregon

With all of the independent publishers that exist, it can be difficult to find which one is the perfect fit for your newly completed manuscript. Whether you write romance, comics, young adult, or flarf poetry, Oregon is likely to have a press that serves your niche. Here is a round-up of some local independent presses who are accepting (either open, limited, or opening soon) submissions from authors like you. You can browse the list below, then follow the link to each publisher’s website and read more about their submission guidelines and existing catalog. Happy hunting!

Children’s

Ripple Grove Press (Portland) names their mission as pairing talented writers and gifted illustrators to make their children’s books as beautiful and masterful as possible. They are calling out for manuscript-only submissions for a unique picture story that “captures a moment with a timeless feel” for children two to eight years old. They ask for five months to review each submission and do not expect to hear from them unless you have been accepted. They also have a helpful list on their website of what stories not to send and how not to submit a manuscript.

Pomegranate (Portland), while not strictly a children’s book publisher, offers numerous children’s titles in addition to coloring books, puzzles, flashcards, and games. This art-focused publisher offers the resources of a large publisher with the attention and care of a small house. They ask writers and artists to submit their materials either through email or direct mail and offer a response within eight weeks of receiving the submission.

Comics

Dark Horse Comics (Portland) hardly needs an introduction with a backlist of Hellboy, Fight Club 2, Lady Killer, and American Gods. The comic publisher currently accepts two kinds of submissions: “art samples or story/series proposals” from either solo artists or teams (writer-only submissions will not be reviewed). Writers must complete a submission agreement before sending any stories or proposals. All submissions should not expect a response unless their material has been accepted.

Image Comics (Portland) was formed by some of Marvel Comics’ best-selling artists in 1992. Since then, the creator-owned house has become the third largest publisher of comics in the US, producing greatness like The Walking Dead, which inspired the top-rated TV show by the same name. Image Comics accepts proposal-only submissions from writers (no manuscript or storyboards) and photocopies of inking, penciling, and lettering samples from artists. Those who submit can expect a response within one month after submitting only if their material has been accepted.

Fiction

Atelier 26 Books (Portland), which published one to three titles a year, preaches reading as a non-consumerist endeavor offering “beautifully designed and expressive books that get people listening, talking, and exchanging ideas.” While submissions are closed for 2018, they are likely to open again in 2019 and will be looking for writing that bravely diverts from the standard in the current publishing industry. For news on reopenings, you can keep an eye on their Facebook and Twitter or check their website contact page for updates.

Forest Avenue Press (Portland) rose to prominence on the wings of the effervescent Laura Stanfill, a luminary in the Portland writing and publishing community. Stanfill and her three-person team produce a few high-quality books and organize numerous book-related events throughout the year, all while encouraging consumers to turn back to their indie bookstores. Submissions are closed for 2018 but will reopen in 2019. When they reopen, they accept submissions through the free platform Submittable and will be looking for 60,000-80,000 word literary fiction that fits within the existing audience reach of the press. True to their mission, they are also looking for authors who will help promote the book themselves through independent bookstores.

Nonfiction

NewSage Press (Troutdale) publishes nonfiction books in numerous areas, including “animal and human bond, environmental issues, nature, women’s issues,” grief and loss, health and wellbeing, and American life as an immigrant. NewSage claims notoriety from American Library Association, which named the press as offering the best books for young adults. The press asks for proposal-only submissions limited to a ten double-spaced page maximum. They have a useful guide on their website for exactly what they expect to see in the proposal and how they would like it to be submitted. They offer no timeline or promise of a response.

Overcup Press (Portland) focuses on producing high-quality books that serve unique niches with travel, art, and design inclinations, publishing everything from a children’s book starring a raccoon to a highly-illustrated guide to Portland’s craft distilling community. The press asks specifically for nonfiction proposals on the following topics: “Pacific Northwest, travel, architecture and design, food and drink, contemporary arts and culture, music/music history/music journalism, STEM titles (in middle-grade or YA).” The small press accepts submissions through Submittable.

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