How to Publish with Us

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In this section:

    If you would like to be considered for publication, please make an inquiry from the Submissions page on our website. If we like your inquiry, we will invite you to submit a full proposal. If we like your proposal, we will offer you one of our three contracts.

    We usually respond to your inquiry within one week, your proposal within three weeks. So in total, it can take up to four weeks between an inquiry and a contract offer. Times may vary by up to a week depending on the volume of submissions and staff availability.

    If you have published with us before, you still have to submit an inquiry. We will consider your book for publication only once.

    Below are some common reasons we turn down inquiries and proposals.

    We are a dynamic, forward-looking independent publisher that welcomes unsolicited manuscripts. We are looking for books that will inspire, inform, and illuminate the lives of readers — with subjects that push the boundaries, are unusual or definitive (maybe even both), delve into new areas of popular subjects, and could never be classed as generic. We want authors with talent, who are ambitious, committed to working with us to promote their books, and know how to connect with their community. This alchemical mix of author and subject is what makes our list so unique and successful. Are you ready to be a part of it?

    Our business is made up of a small but talented team of editors, publicists, marketers, designers, and salespeople. To make sure that we deliver the best service to our authors and achieve the best results that we can, the nuts and bolts of seeing a book through to publication are dealt with efficiently by email notifications, our online database, shared access to a Contacts Database for promotion, and detailed sales reports updated monthly. It’s a transparent system that builds trust and collaborative spirit between our team and our authors.

    Because this is not how many authors have experienced the publishing process, or how they expect the process to happen, we created this detailed Publishing Guide to support them. We advise and expect every author to use the Publishing Guide as the first port of call for advice and reference. For genuine queries that aren’t covered or for those that authors sense aren’t covered clearly, they have access to nearly everyone in the company on our Author Forum.

    • We publish established writers and breakthrough, new voices.
    • We provide reader reports, editing, worldwide distribution, marketing and publicity, sales through first-class sales teams to brick-and-mortar shops worldwide and to all online accounts, as standard for all titles.
    • Our three contracts offer competitive royalty rates.
    • If we like a title but feel the market is limited or difficult, and/or the title is expensive on the design front, a small subsidy from the author may be required.
    • Our ethos is transparency. We work through our innovative database to guide and support you through the publishing process, offering you real-time data on marketing and sales.
    • The business is mostly run by authors, for authors, all working remotely.
    • Authors have access to real-time data on their publishing process via our online database.
    • Authors have access to thousands of industry contacts via our shared Contacts Database.
    • Process takes approximately 12–14 months from Proposal to Publication.
    • Production is faster than usual, taking an average of 3–5 months from manuscript to finished file. Books can be made available for your own use at any time afterward, but we do need 10 months, from finished files to publication, to get your title set up with distributors and added to retailer catalogues, as well as for the reps to contact shops around the world with the finished product.
    • We work with over 70 sales reps worldwide.
    • Royalties are competitive on both print books and ebooks.
    • Distribution and sales are international rather than national.
    • Monthly sales are available for you to see, with your marketing.
    • Access to thousands of industry contacts via our shared Contacts Database.
    • Access to author communities, discussions, and help forums.
    • The way we work allows us to spend more effort on sales, marketing, and social networking so that we can publish more good titles — and good titles support each other in the market.

    We are a member of the Association of American Publishers and the Independent Publishers Guild, the trade body for independent publishers in the UK.

    The clusters and imprints

    Cluster listed first, followed by imprints, listed alphabetically.

    • Children & Young Adult: Our Street Books — All childrens, teen, and YA fiction, non-fiction, & parenting
    • Christianity: Christian Alternative Books — liberal and provocative approach to faith, ethics, and institutional religion | Circle Books — general Christian faith.
    • Culture & Politics: Zer0 Books — culture, society & politics.
    • Fiction: Roundfire Books — general adult fiction — put simply, from literary to popular we publish great stories | Chronos Books — historical fiction (& non-fiction).
    • Mind Body Spirit: 6th Books — all things paranormal, controversial knowledge & NDEs | O-Books — MBS & well-being titles for people seeking an introductions to spirituality.
    • Paganism: Moon Books — paganism & shamanism.
    • Non-fiction: Business Books — fresh thinking for the business world | Iff Books — academic, philosophical & Specialist texts | Liberalis Books — general non-fiction | Chronos Books — historical non-fiction (& fiction)
    • Transformation: Changemakers Books — transformation and environmental & justice activism.

    Recent CI Awards

    2015 Bald New World by Peter Tieryas Folio Award longlist.

    Common reasons we turn down inquiries and proposals

    Your book isn’t finished

    Many writers are too impatient and rush their writing. Is your book as polished and complete as it could be?

    Your book doesn’t stand out in a saturated market

    Your book is aiming at a market that is already covered by many other books, and it's not strong enough to get to the top of the pile.

    It is an illustrated book for children

    Our children's imprint is a small (but essential) part of our publishing business. We only work with complete books because we don't have in-house illustrators to work with. We suggest that either you connect with an illustrator and work on your proposal together, and resubmit, or you can approach a dedicated children's publisher who can connect you with an illustrator.

    It is poetry

    Poetry is not one of our publishing strengths. We recommend finding a publisher who specialises in poetry.

    It comes as a series

    Whilst we love to read a great series of books and have worked with authors on series before, that has always been starting from a standalone book, which has the potential to continue as a series. The commitment from the outset to publishing a series is one that our publishing model doesn't suit.

    Your book is unstructured

    Many books do not work as well as they could because their structure isn’t properly thought through. 10–12 chapters, for example, is a good rule of thumb.

    • Does every chapter work towards this end?
    • Does each chapter itself have a structure?
    • Do the paragraphs lead the reader through the argument?
    • Do the sentences make consecutive sense in the paragraph?
    • Are the sentences, themselves, clear and the right length?
    • Does your manuscript have "pace," does it keep the reader hooked? This is not a question for fiction only.

    Poor previous sales

    You have a previous title with us, and the sales suggest that it would be a commercial risk to move forward with a new project.

    You are not prepared to invest time in marketing

    The proposal is your opportunity to supply a detailed and thorough marketing plan to show that you are committed to marketing your own book, and that you understand how you will reach your intended readership. The more detailed your strategy, the more confident we will be that it can sell.

    Your book is too long

    Manuscripts that are too long tend to put readers off and can be commercially unviable: length correlates to price. A very long manuscript might indicate that you’re not economical in your writing and that your book needs cutting down. The target range for an average read, not too demanding but substantial enough, is 40,000–60,000 words, 80,000 max.

    Your book doesn’t know who it is for

    Really think about who your exact reader is. For instance, Instead of “older people,” paint us a picture, e.g., “A person above sixty who struggles with technology and is always asking their children for help”. The clearer the picture is in your mind, the more focused your writing and language will be.

    The proposal is carelessly filled in

    Carefully and properly fill in the proposal with good spelling and grammar.

    Your book is too expensive to make it worthwhile publishing

    You might require complex design and lots of illustrations, which are expensive or need a different type of book design from the one we offer.


    Some of our authors

    Lucy Starza

    Susan Plunket

    Susan Plunket

    G.L. Davies

    Daniel Ingram Brown

    Daniel Ingram Brown

    Oliver Rolfe

    Harmony Kwicker

    Harmony Kwicker

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