Are you a writer of LGBTQ+ fiction?
Have you just finished writing a novel and are now looking for suitable book publishers?
Below we’ve featured 17 top LGBTQ fiction publishers.
Pride Publishing was established in 2006 by founder Claire Siemaszkiewicz with the express purpose of publishing romance and erotica. They have since expanded to specialize in LGBTQ+ fiction in a wide range of genres, including action and adventure, futuristic and science fiction, horror, paranormal, and so much more. Some of their releases include “Two for the Road’ by Alexa Milne, “The 13th Month” by Bailey Bradford, and “Me and You Two” by Ash Penn.
They currently have an open call for both general and seasonal submissions. If you’ve written an original and captivating book with an LGBTQI leading character, make sure to send them the full manuscript, along with a synopsis and your contact information. You’re strongly encouraged to review their submission guidelines before sending anything in. All submissions can be sent via email.
Bold Strokes Books is an independent publishing company based out of Johnsonville, New York that specializes in publishing lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer works of fiction. Established in 2004, Bold Strokes Books has expanded to produce books in print, ebook, and audiobook formats to help their authors reach a wider audience. Some of their titles include “The Shape of the Earth” by Gary Garth McCann, “Accidental Prophet” by Bud Gundy, and “In Case you Forgot” by Frederick Smith & Chaz Lamar.
They are currently accepting unsolicited manuscripts via email. You’re strongly encouraged to review their submission guidelines, as there are specific requirements that you should meet, lest your submission be rejected. You should include a synopsis of your book, provide a short author bio, and make sure that your work fits Bold Strokes Books’ preferred word count (which varies depending on genre), to name a few requirements.
Sapphire Books is an independent publishing company that specializes in lesbian fiction, nonfiction, and biographical work. Founded in 2010 by Christine Svendsen, they proudly support and promote their authors to cultivate a strong sense of community. Some of their releases include “Laurel Cove” by Sarah Turtle, “The Shower” by Kay Bigelow, and Bobbi & Soul” by J.B. Marsden.
Luckily, they are currently open to unsolicited submissions from lesbian authors, particularly to works of romance, young adult, and of mystery/intrigue, as long as they have romantic themes. Short stories and poetry are not of interest. Manuscripts should be submitted electronically, and they need to be accompanied by a brief author bio, your contact information, and the reasons why your book is appropriate for the target audience. To learn more about their guidelines, click here.
Carnation Books is a small independent publisher of LGBTQ+ fiction that specializes in publishing ebooks. Some of their titles include “Just Like That (Gone and Changed)” by Clara W. Barrow, “Oh, Earthman!” by Berlynn Wohl, and “A Land So Wild” by Elyssa Wakentin. The team at Carnation Books is always on the lookout for new and talented writers with unique original stories to tell.
If you’re interested in working with Carnation Books and have an original story prepared, you can submit your manuscript via their website’s online submission form. They’re especially interested in stories containing queer romance, regardless of genre. Before submitting though, it would be best for you to read the guidelines. For general inquiries or more information, you can contact the team at Carnation Books via email.
5. Cleis Press
Cleis Press is one of the largest independent publishing companies in the United States that specializes in publishing LGBTQ+literature , BDSM, romance, and erotica. As an imprint of Start Publishing, Cleis publishes in both print and ebook formats to reach readers across all platforms. Some of their gay fiction includes titles like “The Palace of Varieties” by James Lear, “Riddle of the Sands” by Geoffrey Knight, and “Hot Cops: Gay Erotic Stories” by Shane Allison.
They are currently accepting book proposals via email or through regular mail. It’s highly recommended that you review their submission guidelines for more information. In terms of genres, they’re especially interested in literary fiction, mystery, romance, erotica, pulp fiction, and LGBTQ studies, to name a few. They note that it can take anywhere between eight to ten weeks to hear a response, but only if they want to collaborate with you.
Dreamspinner Press is an independent publishing company that was founded in 2007. They specialize in publishing high-quality gay male romantic fiction, with some of their latest titles including “King of the Kitchen” by Bru Baker, “The Devil’s Breath” by A. Nybo, and “Parole” by John Inmna.
While Dreamspinner Press is currently closed to submissions at this time, several of their imprints currently have open calls. It’s highly recommended that you review Dreamspinner’s submission guidelines and check back at a later date.
Founded in 2014, Interlude Press is an award-winning publisher of LGBTQ+ general and romantic fiction. Interlude Press publishes in both print and ebook formats so that their authors are better able to reach audiences around the globe. Some of their titles include “Absolutely, Almost, Perfect” by Lissa Reed, “A Tiny Piece of Something Greater” by Jude Sierra, and “Go Your Own Way” by Zane Riley.
Both Interlude Press and their imprint, Duet Books, are currently accepting manuscript submissions for novels with LGBTQ+ lead characters, and they can fit the standards of any genre. The target audience should be either adults or young adults. It’s a good idea to review their submission guidelines, as the team at Interlude Press expects certain requirements to be met for submissions to be considered. All submissions can be submitted via email. They note that due to the high volume of submissions that they receive, it can take up to three months (or even more) for their editorial team to review your manuscript.
8. Bella Books
Bella Books is an independent publishing company that specializes in producing lesbian fiction. They have several award-winning titles and boast a wide range of genres, including mystery,suspense, and intrigue, historical fiction, romance, young adult/new adult, and erotica. Some of their titles include “Rising Above” by Genevieve Fortin, “Brace for Impact” by Beck Harmon, and “Where There’s a Will” by Virginia Hale.
They are currently accepting unsolicited submissions via email. They’re especially interested in lesbian fiction that explores characters with diverse backgrounds and unique perspectives. You’re strongly encouraged to review their submission guidelines before sending anything in for review. You should include a cover letter that provides your contact information, your short bio, and a bit of information as to why you believe your project would appeal to lesbian readers, as well as a synopsis of your story.
Located in Bellingham, Washington, Blind Eye Books is a publisher of mystery, science fiction, romance, and fantasy. Their only interest lies in novels which tell the stories of LGBTQ protagonists, so, if you’re a writer of LGBTQ fiction, Blind Eye Books is probably one of your best choices. To become more familiar with their backlist, you can look up “Master of Restless Shadows” by Ginn Hale and “Bitter Legacy” by Dal MacLean.
If you’d like to collaborate with them, make sure to read the guidelines before submitting your work. Keep in mind that horror, short story collections, nonfiction, and poetry are not of interest. Partial manuscripts, queries, and outlines will not receive a response either.
The California-based Desert Palm Press was founded by R. Lee Fitzsimmons in 2014, and it has since maintained its initial goal: the publication of stories which reflect the experiences of LGBTQ members. To reach a wider audience, they publish in both print and ebook formats. Their lesbian fiction backlist includes titles such as “Forever Across a Crowded Room” by Jane Alden and “You Matter” by Jazzy Mitchell.
They are currently open to submissions. If you’ve written a fiction manuscript that involves lesbian main characters, this is your chance to get it published. Their average response time is 60-90 days. Each manuscript should have a word count of at least 55,000 words, and all of them have to be sent electronically. To learn more, check out their submission guidelines.
11. Supposed Crimes
Supposed Crimes is an independent publishing company that specializes in publishing queer fiction. They’ve published science fiction, erotica, mystery and detective, historical fiction, and more! Some of their LGBTQ fiction includes titles like “For A Glance” by Dan Ackerman, “Surrogate: Hunted” by Jean G’Fellers, and “Drumbeat: Notes from Boston” by A.M. Leibowitz. They publish in both print and ebook formats, offering their authors competitive royalty rates.
Unfortunately, they are currently closed to submissions. However, a new submission period should begin in 2021, so make sure to check their guidelines page for updates.
12. Bywater Books
Located in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Bywater Books is a queer literature imprint that publishes lesbian and feminist fiction, as well as narrative nonfiction. “I Came Out For This?” by Lisa Gitlin and “Sappho’s Bar and Grill” by Bonnie J. Morris are two titles worth checking out, if you want to become familiar with their backlist.
Luckily, they are currently open to submissions. You have to keep in mind that their target audience consists of lesbian readers, and that poetry and erotica are not of interest. However, romance, fantasy/science fiction, general fiction, and mystery are just a few genres they’re looking forward to publishing. To learn more, you can read the guidelines.
13. Lethe Press
An independent publishing house founded by Steve Berman in 2011, Lethe Press is now recognized as a large gay press currently based in Maple Shade Township, New Jersey. Although many of their books are queer-themed, they have, in time, broadened their audience, and they’re now interested in speculative fiction for a wider range of readers.
In terms of genres, they feature fantasy, science fiction, horror, transgender/genderqueer fiction, erotica, and gay romance on their website, to name a few. “Do You Remember Tulum?” by Alex Jeffers and “A Father For Lilja” by Ryszard Merey are just two titles worth looking up. Unfortunately, they’re currently closed for general submissions, but you can check for updates here.
Based out of Burnsville, North Carolina, Riptide Publishing is a small independent publisher of LGBTQ+ fiction. They are well-known for their expansive romance category, but are always looking for new and innovative writers to tell stories in other genres. They publish books in print, ebook, and audiobook format to reach hundreds of thousands of readers around the world. Some of their releases include “Perfect Match” by AG Meiers, “Chasing Forever” by Kelly Jensen, and “Surreal Estate” by Jesi Lea Ryan.
They are currently accepting agented submissions and submissions from their published authors via email. They are especially interested in projects of contemporary romance, romantic suspense, and of epic and high fantasy romance, to name a few. Be sure to include a query letter in the body of your email detailing your manuscript’s title, genre, word count, and the story’s orientation, to name a few requirements. For more details, you can review their submission guidelines online.
Founded in 2014 in Denver, Colorado, Literary Wanderlust is an independent publishing company that publishes books in both print and ebook formats. They are actively seeking submissions to expand their LGBTQ fiction category and are happy to accept unsolicited submissions from both experienced and first-time authors. You can review their submission guidelines in detail here.
All submissions can be sent through their website’s online query form. At present, they are interested in adult LGBTQ and #OwnVoices, adult women’s fiction and romance, adult inspirational, and in young adult fantasy and science fiction, to name a few genres. For general inquiries or more information, you can also reach the team at Literary Wanderlust via email.
16. Ylva Publishing
Ylva Publishing is an independent publishing company founded in 2012 that specializes in lesbian and queer positive fiction and ebook publication. They’ve published work from renowned authors like Cheyenne Blue, A.L. Brooks, and Alison Grey. Some of their titles include “Erasing the Lines’ by KD Williamson, “Romancing the Kicker” by Catherine Lane, and “Payback” by Charlotte Mills.
They are currently accepting unsolicited manuscripts via email, and their main priority is the depiction of diversity. Although romance is their primary market, they will consider other genres as well, if possible – crime/suspense, mystery, erotica, YA, and historical fiction are just a few genres mentioned on their website. You can review the submission requirements online. If interested in your project, a member of their editorial team will reach out to you promptly and instruct you on how to proceed.
17. NineStar Press
Based out of New Mexico, NineStar Press is an independent publishing house that produces LGBTQ+ romance, erotica, and literary fiction. Some of their releases include “Unlocking the Doctor’s Heart” by Liam Livings, “Half-Life” by Gregory L. Norris, and “Valor” by Karrie Roman.
They are currently accepting submissions for literary novels and romance fiction via email. You’re strongly encouraged to review their submission guidelines, as NineStar Press has different requirements based on the genre of your work. You should indicate in your email the category of your manuscript, its genre, a short synopsis , an approximate word count, and a brief history of your publications (if applicable), to name a few requirements.
Are there any other LGBTQ fiction publishers that should be on this list? Please tell us about them in the comments box below!
K. Z. Kwan is a freelance writer based out of Halifax, Canada.