If you’re looking for a list of the best publishers for black authors, below we’ve featured 15 for your perusal.
Located in Oxford, United Kingdom, Lantana is a children’s book publisher where only one goal directs their course of action: the production of works which allow young people from marginalized groups to read stories in which they can find themselves. Regardless of the community they grow up in, all children have the chance of finding a great title in Lantana Publishing’s backlist.
“Maisie’s Scrapbook”, written by Samuel Narh and illustrated by Jo Loring-Fisher, “A Story about Afiya”, written James Berry and illustrated by Anna Cunha, and “Sleep Well Siba & Saba”, written by Nansubuga Nagadya Isdhal and illustrated by Sandra Van Doorn are just three of the wonderfully written books they have published so far.
Although they’re mostly interested in fiction, they also accept submissions of nonfiction and poetry. If you’re a black writer looking to create a better future for children who need representation, click here to learn more about the publisher’s guidelines.
HarperCollins Canada has headquarters in Toronto and is one of the leading worldwide publishers. A strong advocate of the Black Lives Matter movement, the company has created a list of books meant to help black authors gain popularity. In terms of goals, they seek to promote works written by a diverse range of authors, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, or religion. Their policy of Diversity and Inclusion is extended to their employees as well.
The genres featured on their website are fiction, self-improvement, business, romance, and cooking, to give a few examples. “Permission to Dream”, by Chris Gardner, and “We Are Each Other’s Harvest”, by Natalie Baszile “are two titles worth checking out to see what they’re looking for.
Authors who are Black, Indigenous, or people of color are free to submit middle-grade manuscripts to this publisher without having to work with an agent. To learn more, click here.
Based in Baltimore, Maryland, Black Classic Press was founded in 1978 and it specializes in republishing valuable out of print works. Their focus lies on titles written by authors of African descent which discuss people from their culture.
Text books, poetry & literature, and biographies & memoir are three genres you will find on their website. In terms of books, you can look up “The Beautiful Struggle”, by Ta-Nehisi Coates, “African Contributions to Civilization”, by G.K. Osei, and “As Nature Leads”, by J. A. Rogers to become accustomed with their interests.
If you’re interested in working with them, keep in mind that they only want submissions of college-level writings which are being used in the classroom by their authors. You have to send a synopsis, the first chapter of your work, and a few more details listed in the submissions page.
Broadside Lotus Press was born after the merging of Broadside Press (founded in 1965) and Lotus Press (founded in 1972). It is currently based in Detroit, Michigan, and it is a renowned publisher of African American works of literature and poetry which supports young writers of color.
They are interested in publishing works that depict the experiences of African Americans from a historical standpoint, but also their current hardships and successes. To learn more about their backlist, check out “Ascension”, by Malaika Favorite, and “Blues Legacy”, by Jacquese Armstrong.Are you a black author looking for the right publisher? Then Broadside Lotus Press might just be the perfect choice – don’t hesitate to reach them here for more information about submissions.
Located in Hampton, Virginia, BlackGold Publishing is a well-known online publisher which was founded by Tahara Saron in 2017. Perfect for black and ethnic writers, the company has over 200 titles available and it is becoming more and more popular within the indie author scene.
Some of the genres featured on their website are mystery noir, poetry, memoir, and fantasy. To find out more about their preferences, make sure to look up “TWELVE”, by Ashleigh S. Wilkerson, “Grimoire of a Black Girl”, by Krystal Kantrell, and “Bria’s Focus Captured”, by Latoya Lake.
Unfortunately, they are currently closed to submissions until January 2021. If you’re willing to invest in your project, though, check out their services and see if any of them suit your needs.
Founded by Victoria Christopher Murray and ReShonda Billingsley, Brown Girls Books is a US-based boutique publisher which provides visibility for some of the most talented black authors, among which we can name Nakecia Bowers, Stacey Evans Morgan, and Terri Haynes.
Their backlist includes children’s books, young adult books, and adult books. When it comes to the latter, their website features fiction, nonfiction, memoir, and anthologies. Some of the titles worth checking out are “Sister Surrogate”, by Lachelle Weaver, “The Perfect Find”, by Tia Williams, and “Color Him Father”, by Lawrence M. Drake II..
They are not accepting submissions at the moment, but you can request more information here.
Just Us Books started their activity in West Orange, New Jersey in 1987, shortly after Wade and Cheryl Hudson realized that there were too few children’s books depicting the heritage and lives of people within the black community. Now, the company is a renowned multicultural publisher.
Their catalogue includes middle grade, young adult, poetry, and black history & nonfiction books, among other genres. Two of their best titles are “Path To My African Eyes”, by Ermila Moodley, and “I’m A Big Sister Now”, written by Katura J. Hudson and illustrated by Sylvia L. Walker.
In terms of submissions, they currently accept queries for chapter books (ages 7-9), picture books, and middle reader books (ages 9-12) from both agented and unagented writers. To learn more, check out their guidelines.
Located in Greenbelt, Maryland, Rosarium Publishing was founded in 2013 by Bill Campbell. One of the company’s main interests is multiculturalism – it doesn’t matter to which race or gender you belong, as long as you have plenty of talent to share with the world.
Rosarium Publishing specializes in comics, speculative fiction, and in crime fiction. To name a few categories, their website features novels, graphic novels, anthologies, and art. You should check out “Koontown Killing Kaper” and “My Booty Novel”, both by Bill Campbell, and “The Jones Men”, by Vern E. Smith to see what they like.
Do you want to find out about their submissions policy? Feel free to reach them here.
Based in New Rochelle, New York, African Heritage Press is a publishing company focused on Africa and Diaspora-related creative writing. Since they also produce eBooks and are affiliated with African Books Collective (ABC), their titles manage to reach a wide audience.
African Heritage Press publishes both fiction and nonfiction – some of the works featured on their backlist are “I Want To Dance”, by Tanure Ojaide, “Eco-Critical Literature”, by Ogaga Okuyade, and “Ethnosensitive Dimensions of African Oral Literature”, by Afam Ebeogu.
If you’re a black author looking to publish your work, you could ask them for submission details here.
10. BLF Press
BLF Press a black feminist publisher located in Bloomington, Indiana. Stephanie Andrea Allen founded the press in 2014, hoping that she would succeed in changing the lack of diversity within the publishing industry. She earned a B.A. and an M.A. in English, as well as a Ph.D. in American Studies.
Short fiction, speculative writing, and nonfiction are three of the genres featured on their website. To learn more about their preferences, check out “Solace: Writing, Refuge, and LGBTQ Women of Color”, and “Black From the Future: A Collection of Black Speculative Writing”, both edited by S. Andrea Allen and Lauren Cherelle.
Although they are currently closed to submissions, their open reading period will begin on January 2nd, 2021. When this happens, black female authors are welcome to send their works for publication. You can read more about their guidelines here.
11. Indolent Books
A haven for authors who are part of underrepresented groups, Indolent Books is a publisher of works written by people of color, trans, queer, and nonbinary people, people suffering from HIV, and many others. Currently located in Brooklyn, New York, the nonprofit press was founded in 2015 by Michael Broder and it specializes in poetry.
Their topics of interest are related to justice of all kinds (such as racial or economic justice), but not exclusively. “These Women You Gave Me”, by Antoinette Brim, and “Bessie’s Resurrection”, by Kimberly A. Collins are just two of the titles on their backlist.
If you’re interested in working with them, you can ask for information about their submission guidelines here.
12. Jaded Ibis Press
A US-based feminist press, Jaded Ibis is determined to protect and promote the works of authors who are part of underrepresented groups, such as people of color. As a matter of fact, they have initiated a Black Voices Prose Series and a Black Voices Poetry Series, which are both meant to help black literature gain popularity.
They are interested in both fiction and nonfiction – to become familiar with what they publish, you may want to look up “The Through”, by A. Rafael Johnson.
Luckily, they are currently open to general submissions – if you have a well-written manuscript which depicts ideas of social justice, feel free to send it at firstname.lastname@example.org, right after reading their guidelines.
13. Jaracanda Books
Jaracanda Books is based in London, United Kingdom. As it welcomes diversity when it comes to both authors and writings, this independent publisher is renowned for their interest in books written by Africans/African Americans, women, and people of color, especially if they tell the stories of powerful characters who belong to underrepresented groups.
Their range of interests is rather wide, and it includes short stories, fiction, and romantic comedies. You should check out “Through the Leopard’s Gaze”, by Njambi McGrath, “Hadriana in All My Dreams”, by René Depestre, and “From Pasta to Pigfoot”, by Frances Mensah Williams to get an idea about what they prefer. Two other authors whose works they have published are Fiston Mwanza Mujila and Kabir Kareem-Bello.
They are currently looking for literary fiction, genre fiction, adult commercial fiction, and memoir, to name a few genres. If you’re interested in sending them your work, make sure to include a cover letter, a synopsis, and 20-30 pages of text. More submission details are available here.
14. New Beacon Books
The first black publisher in the United Kingdom, New Beacon Books was established by Sarah White and John La Rose in 1966, and is currently located in London. Due to their efforts, numerous works from South America, African America, Africa, Europe, and Asia were made accessible for the British audience.
They are interested in children’s books, fiction, and nonfiction, and each of these genres is divided into several categories on their website – to find out more about what they’re looking for, make sure to check out “Go Tell It on the Mountain”, by James Baldwin, “New Daughters of Africa”, edited by Margaret Busby, and “Little Leaders: Exceptional Men in Black History”, by Vashti Harrison.
Due to a high volume of submissions, they are not able to take on any more projects at the moment. However, you can request information regarding the next open reading period here.
15. The 3rd Thing
Founded by Anne de Marcken and Sarah Tavis, The 3rd Thing is a US-based independent press which aims to publish high-quality works that don’t fit into the norm. They also work with authors who are part of underrepresented groups, especially with people of color and queer women.
Their backlist is rather short at the moment, as they only publish 4-6 titles per year. The genres featured on their website are fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, to give a few examples. “The High Alive: An Epic Hoodoo Diptych”, by Carlos Sirah is just one of their titles worth checking out.
Even though they only accept submissions by invitation at the moment, you can still check their page for any updates.
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