78 Poetry Manuscript Publishers Who Do Not Charge Reading Fees

Written by Emily Harstone

Most traditional poetry manuscript publishers charge their readers a fee to submit. You can read about why that is the case here. This article focuses on a number of poetry manuscript publishers who do not charge submission fees to writers, which is good news for poets.

This is the longest and most accurate list of poetry manuscript publishers who do not charge fees for online or postal submissions. A number of the publishers on this list have at least one free reading period a year, where they will consider all the manuscripts submitted to them. Some of the publishers are open all the time. Some have a limited window that is only a month or two long.

Not all of the publishers are currently open to submissions. A few of them have geographic or other limitations, but the majority are open to authors of any nationality and background.

The list is in no particular order. If you know of another publisher who belongs on this list, or if you find an error or an update for this list, please email support@authorspublish.com.

Unlike other lists and reviews on Authors Publish, I do not do full background checks or complete reviews on all the publishers. That is partially because the task would be overwhelming in terms of time and also because most poetry presses are small and it is hard to find out that much about them. I did eliminate any press that had glaring red flags, but please research any of the presses on the list you are considering submitting to.

I try to update and add to this list once a year. The last time I updated this was September 26th 2019.

    1. 8th House Publishing
      8th House Publishing is a newer publisher based out of Montreal and New York. They publish poetry, novels with a literary bent, and nonfiction. You can get a better idea of the poetry they have previously published here. You can read our full review of them
    2. Platypus Publishing
      A UK-based publisher of poetry and prose. You can read our full review of them here.
    3. Measure Press
      Measure Press is a small press that publishes poetry, criticism, and poetry instruction as well as a semi-annual literary journal that focuses exclusively on publishing formal poetry. You can read our full review of them here.
    4. Arte Público Press
      Arte Público Press, affiliated with the University of Houston, specializes in publishing contemporary novels, short stories, poetry, and drama based on U.S. Hispanic (Cuban American, Mexican American, Puerto Rican, and others) cultural issues and themes. To learn more, visit their website here.
    5. solid objects
      solid objects is a publisher of fiction, poetry, drama, and nonfiction based out of New York. You can read our full review here.
    6. Wiseblood
      Wiseblood is a Christian publisher that is deeply influenced by Flannery O’Connor’s work. They publish poetry and other work that has literary merit. You can read our full review here.
    7. Anansi Press
      This is an established Canadian press that also published nonfiction and literary fiction. However they are only open to submissions from Canadian citizens, although they do occasionally make exceptions.  You can learn more here.
    8. BlazeVOX
      They publish poetry and experimental literature. Learn more at their website here.
    9. Blood Axe
      This is a British publisher of poetry manuscripts. They expect poets to have been previously published in literary journals. Learn more at their website here. Unfortunately they cannot currently accept unsolicited manuscripts from North American poets.
    10. Carcanet
      A UK-based publisher of poetry. To learn more about their submission guidelines, visit their website here.
    11. Colbalt
      A literary journal and press that is looking for poetry manuscripts. Learn more at their website.
    12. Counterpath Press
      A small not-for-profit publisher of poetry manuscripts that requires writers to query first. To learn more, visit their submission guidelines here.
    13. Deerbrook Editions
      An independent literary press publishing noteworthy or emerging authors in well-designed trade editions. They are open to submissions from August to January. You can read their submission guidelines here.
    14. Harbor Mountain Press
      A non-profit poetry press based in Vermont, they prefer queries before submissions. To learn more, visit their website here.
    15. Lapwing Publications
      A small publisher of poetry based out of Belfast. You can learn more
    16. Doubleback Books (Sundress Publishing)
      Doubleback Books is an imprint of Sundress Publishing, that reprints books from small independent presses that have closed. They host one open reading period a year generally. Sundress Publishing as a whole has an open reading period for books that have never been previously published, and you can either pay a $13 submission fee or buy a book or broadside instead. So they are not fee free, but you get something out of it. You can learn more here.
    17. Mongrel Empire
      They are particularly interested in cross-genre and multi-disciplinary work. They appear to be closed to submissions but not to queries. To learn more about them and to submit, visit their website
    18. New Binary Press
      To learn more about them and to read their submission guidelines, go here.
    19. Winter Goose Publishing
      They are open to a wide variety of genres, including poetry. They ask that you only submit 15 poems from the manuscript initially. To learn more, go here.
    20. Coach House Books
      Coach House Books publishes innovative poetry, literary fiction, drama and select nonfiction by Canadian authors only. You can learn more here.
    21. Northwestern University Press
      A university press open to unsolicited poetry manuscript submissions. Learn more here.
    22. Pinyon Publishing
      Pinyon Publishing is a small company located in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains. Learn more at their website here.
    23. Salmon Poetry
      This Irish poetry press asks that you query first. Learn more about them
    24. Nine Arches Press
      A small poetry publisher. To learn more, visit their website here.
    25. Skylight Press
      A British press with great covers. Learn more about what they accept here.
    26. Unicorn Press
      A California-based poetry publisher. Learn more here.
    27. Black Mountain Press
      A small publisher open to poetry and a number of other literary works. They charge a small fee for submittable submissions, but sending through the post is free. Learn more here.
    28. Canarium Books
      They are an independent press dedicated to publishing poetry by established and emerging authors from the US and abroad. Learn more here.
    29. Ninebark Press
      They are committed to publishing literature that crosses boundaries of genre, culture, and aesthetic. Visit their website
    30. Faber & Faber
      This respected British publisher is only open to unsolicited submissions of poetry. Learn more here.
    31. Kaya Press
      They only publish work by Asian and Pacific Islander diasporic writers in the US. To learn more, visit their website
    32. McSweeny’s
      Started by the writer Dave Eggers, McSweeny’s is a well known and established publisher transitioning into becoming a non-profit. To learn more, visit their website here.
    33. Able Muse
      A small publisher that publishes a wide variety of work. Learn more here.
    34. Black Ocean Press
      They generally consider manuscripts only for a limited period. Visit their website here.
    35. Damaged Goods Press
      They publish poetry by queer and trans identified people. They accept chapbooks and full length manuscripts on a rolling basis. Learn more here.
    36. Acre Books
      Acre Books is an imprint of The Cincinnati Review. They focus on publishing literary fiction and poetry. They are interested in novels and short story collections. They are not accepting submissions of full manuscripts. They ask that authors query first. Read our review here.
    37. BatCat Press
      A literary press that considers work in the winter. Learn more
    38. Tinderbox Editions
      This poetry press has at least one short fee free period every year. Usually in December for poetry. Learn more
    39. Two Plum Press
      A press that does beautiful letterpress covers. They are based out of Portland, Oregon. Learn more here.
    40. Persea Books
      A respected literary publisher open to queries. Read our review here.
    41. Astrophil Press
      A small press based out of the University of South Dakota. They have at least one open reading period a year. Learn more here.
    42. Brick Road
      They publish full length poetry manuscripts. Learn more
    43. Coffee House Press
      This respected independent publisher is open to poetry manuscript submissions. Learn more
    44. Tarpaulin Sky
      They are open to poetry manuscripts every year for a period of time. Visit their website here.
    45. Pavilion Poetry
      Part of the University of Liverpool Press, they are committed to publishing the best in contemporary poetry. Learn more
    46. Mansfield Press
      This small Canadian press is only open to submissions by Canadian authors. To learn more, visit their website here.
    47. Wundor Editions
      Wundor Editions is a UK-based publisher that accepts poetry, fiction, and photography. Read our full review here.
    48. Liverpool University Press
      This small poetry press only publishes the work of Irish poets. To learn more, visit their website here.
    49. Prolific Press
      Accepts full-length poetry, fiction, and nonfiction manuscripts. Learn more here.
    50. Phoenicia Publishing
      They accept unsolicited manuscript submissions during reading periods, but only after receiving and responding to a query letter from the poet. Learn more
    51. Apogee Press
      They print beautiful books by a wide variety of new and established poets. You can learn more here.
    52. Steel Toe Books
      There is no reading fee although they ask (but don’t demand) that all submitters purchase a book directly from their website. To learn more, visit their website here.
    53. BookLand Press
      This Canadian press is only open to submissions from Canadians. They publish fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and Indigenous literature. Learn more here.
    54. Holy Cow Press
      This small press has been around for over forty years. They publish poetry and a variety of other genres. To learn more, go here.
    55. Whisky Tit
      Whisky is a small press that publishes a variety of quirky literary work. They have just started to publish poetry. They are open to submissions year round. To learn more, go
    56. City Lights
      The famous publisher of many beat poets, City Lights is based out of San Francisco and they accept unsolicited poetry manuscript proposals. You can learn more here.
    57. Inside the Castle
      This small press is always open to unsolicited submissions. You can learn more here.
    58. Four Way Books
      This established publisher has a number of open reading periods and contests each year, however only one is open to fee-free submissions, and it is only open to authors living in the five boroughs of New York City. You can learn more here.
    59. Plan B Press
      This small press is open to submissions for full length books and chapbooks. Authors must have published less than three books previously. To learn more, go
    60. ECW Press
      They are only open to fiction and poetry books submitted by Canadians; there are no citizenship restrictions on writers submitting nonfiction. Learn more here.
    61. Disorder Press
      This small press is looking for unapologetic writing. Learn more here.
    62. Vegetarian Alcoholic Press
      They are seeking manuscripts longer than 50 pages. Learn more here.
    63. University of Saint Katherine Press
      They publish poetry, essays, and short fiction, as well as academic books in the humanities and social sciences, science, technology, medicine, and education. They are open to submissions in all of these categories. All of the books they publish reflect on Christianity in some way. Read our full review here.
    64. Cormorant Books
      They publish poetry books by Canadian authors only. Learn more
    65. The Blue Nib
      They publish poetry and literary fiction. Learn more here.
    66. The Waywiser Press
      They publish poetry, literary fiction, and works of criticism. Learn more here.
    67. AunteLute
      This feminist press is open to submissions but they really know what they’re looking for, so read guidelines carefully before submitting. Learn more here.
    68. Coteau Books
      They publish literary fiction and poetry by Canadians and permanent residents of Canada. Learn more
    69. Another New Calligraphy
      This small press seeks work exploring the human experience. Authors must be based in the Chicago area. Learn more here.
    70. Alaska Literary Series
      Published by the University of Alaska Press this series publishes only work by those with a connection to or writing about Alaska or the circumpolar north. Learn more here.
    71. Broken Sleep Books
      A UK based company that publishes contemporary poetry of a more experimental slant. Learn more
    72. Books
      A publisher of fiction, non-fiction, translation, and poetry. Learn more here.
    73. Clash Books
      Started in 2015 they are looking for strong voices and unique perspectives. They also publish fiction and poetry. Learn more here.
    74. Encircle Publications
      They accept submissions of general fiction, mystery, and poetry. They also accept chapbooks. Learn more
    75. High Plains Press
      A respected regional press, they publish one poetry title a year in a series called “Poetry of the American West.” Learn more here.
    76. Gray Borders Books
      They publish books that confront and challenge current social norms. They publish poetry, fiction, and non-fiction. Learn more here.
    77. Invisible Publishing
      They publish poetry and literature by Canadian authors. Learn more here.
    78. University of Pittsburgh Press
      The Pitt Poetry Series publishes one book a year but you can only submit if you have previously published a full length manuscript. Learn more here.
    79. Tia Churcha Press
      A cross cultural press that is open to poetry submissions. Learn more

Bio: Emily Harstone is the pen name of an author whose work has been published internationally by a number of respected journals. She is a professional submissions adviser. You can follow her on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/emilyharstone/

 

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