Submissions & Book Proposals

Autonomous Press publishes both fiction and nonfiction. Scholarly or journalistic works, novels, anthologies, memoirs, poetry, drama – we’ll consider any genre, and we love innovative hybrid works that defy traditional genre categories.

We’re looking for books that are, above all, transformative. Books that have the potential to expand minds, to introduce readers to radically new perspectives, to spark personal and cultural change. We want books that pose a danger to dominant paradigms, prejudices, and assumptions. Books that wake people up.

We’re especially interested in publishing authors whose voices are generally marginalized by the mainstream. Authors who are neurodivergent, queer, transgender, mad, disabled, racialised, presently or formerly homeless or incarcerated. Authors doing work so radical, in some way or another, that conventional academic or literary publishers are scared to touch it. We want to amplify the sort of voices that are too often silenced in the dominant culture.

Our NeuroQueer Books imprint focuses on queer issues, queering, sexuality, gender, and the intersections of gender, neurodivergence, and other aspects of identity. This imprint is primarily literary – fiction, memoir, poetry, drama, graphic novels – but is also open to critical and scholarly work that takes a literary approach, such as creative autoethnography.

We do not publish work that seems to us to promote or reinforce societal systems of oppression such as racism, misogyny, homophobia, transphobia, or ableism. We do not publish work that frames neurodivergence or madness in terms of medical pathology (e.g., referring to autism or any other form of innate neurodivergence as a “disorder,” or describing neurodivergent or mad persons as “mentally ill”).

You can send us completed manuscripts, or book proposals. Book proposals are informal – there’s no official format; just tell us about the book you’re proposing, in anywhere from a paragraph to a couple of pages, and send samples and excerpts if you’ve got any. Please note that interest in your proposal isn’t a guarantee that we’ll publish your book – even if we like your idea, we’ll need to see the completed manuscript before we make a final decision.

Guidelines for Manuscripts

Completed manuscripts should be submitted as a single .doc or .docx file (no other file formats will be accepted). The manuscript must meet the following criteria:

  • Double-space all text except for poetry.
  • Indent the first line of each paragraph, and do not put blank lines between paragraphs.
  • Make the first page a cover page with title and author contact info.
  • Number all pages.
  • Use Oxford commas.
  • The entire manuscript should be thoroughly and carefully spell-checked and proofread (we recommend it be reviewed multiple times, by the author and by at least two other readers who have a sharp critical eye for detail, punctuation, grammar, and clarity of writing).

Manuscripts that do not meet these criteria will either be rejected or returned to the author for further polishing. Never submit a manuscript that has not been thoroughly proofread multiple times.

Contact Information

If you are interested in submitting a book proposal or manuscript, please contact us via email:

Email for submissions to the Autonomous Press imprint: nick@autpress.com

Email for submissions to the NeuroQueer Books imprint: ian@autpress.com

Email for simultaneous submission to both imprints, if your book could fit in either one or if you’re not sure which imprint is the better fit (we’ll figure it out): nick@autpress.com

Anthologies

If you have short pieces to publish instead of an entire book, keep an eye on our Upcoming Anthologies page. The call for submissions to our annual literary anthology, The Spoon Knife Anthology, will appear on that page every year in early Spring, and calls for other anthologies (literary and otherwise) will also appear there on occasion.