Acquisition Guidelines

Find out if Seal Press is the right publisher for your manuscript.

Illustration of a vintage typewriter.

Seal Press is always interested in connecting with qualified writers and hearing about new projects.

You can help us assess whether your project would be a good fit for Seal Press by getting to know us. Before you submit your proposal, familiarize yourself with Seal Press and its publications.

What We’re Seeking

Do your research: Browse our site and look at the types of books we publish and the subjects we cover. Seal Press publishes with an emphasis on original, lively, radical, empowering, and culturally diverse nonfiction that addresses contemporary issues from a woman’s perspective.

What to Send Us

Do not send your full manuscript for consideration. Please send either a query letter or a proposal with a small writing sample. Unfortunately, due to the volume of submissions we receive, we cannot field phone calls or emails about individual submissions. Please allow 6–8 weeks for a response.

Sorry, No Fiction

Unless we specifically put out a call for submissions, Seal Press is not acquiring fiction at this time.

Even if you ask really, really nicely the answer will still be no. Plus, we’ll feel bad for having to send you a rejection letter.

What does Seal Press look for in a book proposal?

For us to consider your project, include the following components:

Include a project overview.

Be sure to include a working title for your project. Provide a general description of your book (25 words or less). Be sure to answer: what is its mission, purpose, or overall concept? In addition, provide a table of contents and an outline with summaries/descriptions of each chapter. Let us know the current status of your project. (Is it completed? If not, when do you expect to complete it? What is its anticipated length?)

Research the competition.

What books have already been published on this topic? Refer to specific authors and titles. What, specifically, sets your proposed book apart from each of its potential competitors? Does it approach the subject from a different angle, include new coverage of the topic, or have some other element that will be irresistible to buyers?

Who is the target audience?

Whom do you see as the audience or audiences for your book? (Try to think of at least three.) What specifically would appeal to them about your book? What questions does it answer, or what needs does it fulfill, for this audience?

Include a writing sample.

Provide a representative sample of your writing. For a single-author book, include your introduction or first chapter. If you are proposing an anthology, include your introduction, proposed call for submissions, and a representative sampling of contributions. We are most concerned with getting a sense of your voice and style, and will request more writing when we need it.

Tell us about your platform.

What are you doing regularly to build that platform? How will you help us to reach your followers, your target audience? Do you have a website or social media presence? This section of your proposal is just as important as the writing itself.

Why you? Give us an author biography.

Tell us about yourself and your background. Include a copy of your current resume or CV, and provide detailed information about your previous publications. Why do you think that you are the person to write this book? If you are proposing an anthology, what makes you particularly qualified to serve as an editor, and what makes your contributors particularly qualified to write about this subject?

What's your marketing strategy?

How would your book’s potential audience(s) best be reached? What publications do they read? What television or radio shows do they watch/listen to? What experience do you have with public readings/public speaking? Do you regularly speak to audiences on topics related to your book’s subject? Do you write a regular column for a newspaper, magazine, or website? Let us know about any contacts, affiliations, or associations you belong to that will enable you to help promote the book after it is published.

illustration of an ink pen and envelopes

I want to be published by Seal Press!

Remember: Do not send your full manuscript for consideration. Please familiarize yourself with the guidelines above before querying or submitting a proposal.

Submissions can be sent to us at the following address:

Acquisitions Editor
Seal Press
1700 4th Street
Berkeley, California 94710

emma.rose@perseusbooks.com

Please allow 6–8 weeks for a response. Due to the volume of submissions, we cannot field phone calls or emails about individual submissions.