If you’re looking for publishers of dark fiction, below you’ll find 17 publishing houses that publish books in this particular subgenre.
Hellbound Books is an independent publisher located in Austin, Texas. They specialize in all things dark—bizarro fiction, dark fantasy, horror, and similar genres. They consider themselves champions of emerging writers and happily accept submissions from first-time authors. In addition to full-length novels, Hellbound Books also publishes novellas and anthologies.
If you are interested in submitting your work to Hellbound Books, you can find their submission guidelines here. They currently accept novels between 60,000 and 120,000 words and novellas between 30,000 and 60,000 words. Proposals must include a query letter, a 250-word synopsis, and the first 50 pages of your manuscript. You can also check submission calls for their upcoming anthologies here. For general inquiries, you can reach Hellbound Books via email.
Founded by Joe Morey in 1985, Dark Regions Press is an award-winning independent publisher that primarily publishes horror, dark fiction, science fiction, and fantasy. Over the years, they have collaborated with hundreds of outstanding authors, poets, and artists, including Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, Joyce Carol Oates, Clive Barker, Bentley Little, and Ramsey Campbell, among others. They specialize in limited edition hardcovers, but they also publish paperbacks, e-books, and audiobooks.
Dark Regions Press is currently closed for submissions. If you’d like to stay informed about their future calls for submission, you can sign up for their free email newsletter. For any questions or concerns, you can get in touch with Dark Regions Press through their online contact form.
Founded in 2012, Crystal Lake Publishing is an independent publisher specializing in dark fiction, horror, speculative fiction, suspense, and mystery. Although they are a small press, they are considered one of the world’s leading dark fiction publishers and have won a number of awards, including several Bram Stoker Awards. Crystal Lake publishes novels, novellas, poetry and short story collections, non-fiction books, and anthologies.
Crystal Lake isn’t accepting submissions at the moment, but you can visit their Author Central to check for any upcoming submission calls. Should you wish to get in touch with the Crystal Lake team, you can do so by sending them an email.
Blood Bound Books is an independent publisher based in Arizona. Since 2009, they have been publishing novels, novellas, and anthologies in the genres of dark fiction, horror, dark fantasy, and suspense. They are responsible for the horror anthology series, Night Terrors and DOA, and have published the works of Jack Ketchum, Robert Devereaux, Bentley Little, Jeff Strand, John Skipp, and other notable dark fiction writers.
Although they are currently closed for general submissions, they do have an open call for one of their anthologies. Visit the submissions page on their website to learn more. You can also reach Blood Bound Books via email for any additional questions.
Located in Florida, The Parliament House is an independent publisher that aims to be the Guillermo del Toro of the independent publishing world. They publish science fiction and fantasy, with a preference for the weird and the dark—be it urban, steampunk, contemporary, paranormal, or otherwise.
The Parliament House is currently open for submissions, and they are interested in novels between 50,000 and 140,000 words. They do not accept unpolished manuscripts and expect all submissions to have gone through several rounds of editing and beta reading. If you are interested in submitting, send them the first three chapters of your manuscript along with a query letter. All submissions must be sent via email. For general inquiries, you can contact them here.
6. Montag Press
Montag Press is a Bay Area publisher that publishes quality paperbacks and e-books of the highest quality. They specialize in speculative fiction and historical fiction, including the subgenres of dark fantasy, horror, dystopian fiction, subversive fiction, existential fiction, alternate histories, counterfactual histories, steampunk, and more. You can find the full list of genres and subgenres they are interested in here.
Montag Press is currently looking for novels, play manuscripts, and short story collections in all the genres they publish. All submissions must be sent via email and must include the completed manuscript, a brief cover letter, and a story synopsis that reveals the story’s arc and ending. Check out their submission guidelines for more information.
Cemetery Dance is one of the world’s leading publishers of horror and dark suspense. In 1988, they released the first issue of Cemetery Dance Magazine, an award-winning magazine that features stories of horror, dark fiction, mystery, and suspense. Since then, they have expanded their scope and now publish e-books, chapbooks, comic books, and limited editions from acclaimed authors. Some of the authors they have worked with include Stephen King, Clive Barker, Dean Koontz, Lincoln Child, Jack Ketchum, and more.
Cemetery Dance is currently closed for submissions. But if you are interested in collaborating with them in the future, you can keep an eye out for open calls and get familiar with Cemetery Dance’s submission guidelines here. To get in touch with the Cemetery Dance team, you can send them an email.
Founded by Jason Sizemore in 2004, Apex Publications is a Kentucky-based publisher that initially started out as a quarterly magazine of dark science fiction stories. Since then, they have grown into a small press that produces trade paperbacks, e-books, audiobooks, as and a monthly online zine. They now specialize in dark fiction, science fiction, horror, and fantasy.
Apex Publications isn’t open for submissions at the moment, but they do hold reading periods from time to time. You can sign up for their newsletter and follow their social media accounts to get notified about reading period announcements. You can also visit the submissions page on their website. For general inquiries, contact Apex Publications here.
Based in San Francisco, Cedar Grove is an independent publisher that produces books across various genres, including science fiction, fantasy, dark fiction, mystery, children’s books, and young adult fiction. They have also published several anthologies, including Sycorax’s Daughters, a collection of dark fiction and poetry written by black women writers.
Cedar Grove is currently open for submissions, and they welcome unsolicited and un-agented manuscripts. They are looking for novels between 45,000 and 70,000 words, as well as novellas between 20,000 and 45,000 words. Submissions must include the first chapter of your manuscript along with a query letter. Once you are ready, you can send them your submission via email. Learn more about Cedar Grove’s submission guidelines here.
Founded in 2009 by Christopher C. Payne, Journalstone is another San Francisco-based independent publisher that specializes in science fiction, fantasy, dark fiction, and horror for adult and young adult readers. They publish in several formats and proudly showcase the work of new and emerging authors. In addition to publishing full-length novels, Journalstone also produces a yearly anthology of short stories.
Journalstone’s reading period has just ended, but you can check out their submission guidelines and get updates about their next reading period here. For inquiries, you can contact the Journalstone team via email.
11. Unlit Press
Unlit Press is an independent publisher headquartered in Oxford, UK. They specialize in dark fiction and horror novels, novellas, and short story collections. Their mission is to support the work of dark fiction writers and bring their stories to a larger audience. Although they are based in the UK, they are open to collaborating with both British and international authors.
Unlit Press is closed for submissions right now, but you can visit their submissions page to check for any open calls or reading period announcements. If you would like to connect with the Unlit Press team, you can reach them via email.
12. Flame Tree Press
An imprint of Flame Tree Publishing, Flame Tree Press specializes in science fiction, horror, dark fiction, crime, fantasy, and other forms of genre fiction. Since their launch in 2018, they have collaborated with a number of talented authors, including Bram Stoker award-winners Tim Waggoner, John Everson, and Ramsey Campbell, as well as several up-and-coming authors like Robin Triggs, Brian Trent, and David Tallerman.
They are currently open for submissions and are interested in novels between 70,000 and 120,000 words. When submitting, include a short synopsis, your manuscript’s word count, your curriculum vitae, and whether you have submitted your manuscript elsewhere. The full manuscript must also be sent as an email attachment. For more information, check out their submission guidelines here. Contact Flame Tree Press should you have any additional questions.
13. Tartarus Press
Founded in 1990, Tartarus Press is a small independent press based in the UK. They specialize in dark fiction—particularly the horror and supernatural kind—and they publish limited editions, paperbacks, and e-books. Over the years, Tartarus Press has won a number of awards, including five World Fantasy Awards and a Bram Stoker Award from the Horror Writers Association.
Tartarus Press welcomes submissions of novels and short story collections between 75,000 and 120,000 words. Do note that while they are looking for dark, horror, and supernatural fiction, they aren’t interested in violent horror, high fantasy, or young adult fiction. If you are interested in submitting, you can send them your proposal via email or post. Check out their submission guidelines for detailed information. You can also contact Tartarus Press here.
14. Grimbold Books
Based in Oxfordshire, Grimbold Books is home to fresh and exciting fantasy, science fiction, and dark fiction. Although they are a small press, they are extremely passionate about what they do and are committed to finding and publishing books of the highest caliber. And because they only publish a few titles each year, they are able to build meaningful relationships with all the authors they work with.
Grimbold Books publishes dark fiction under their Tenebris Books imprint. Some of the authors they have published under Tenebris Books include Jude Houghton, Michelle Valentine, Rowena Wiseman, and Frances Kay. Although they are closed for submissions at the moment, feel free to visit their submissions page for future updates. You can also check out the Tenebris Books catalog to get an idea of what they usually publish.
Undertow Publications is an award-winning Canadian press that publishes novels, novellas, short story collections, and anthologies in paperback, hardcover, and e-book formats. They are interested in the dark, the strange, the horrific, and the surreal—but they only publish dark fiction of literary merit. In their words, their aesthetic is “the liminal area where genre and literary fiction meet." Feel free to browse their catalog to get an idea of the kind of fiction they publish.
They are currently closed for submissions, but do keep an eye out for open calls and reading period announcements. In the meantime, you can get familiar with their submission guidelines here.
Founded in 2010, MuseItUp is a Canadian publisher that produces quality fiction for adult and young adult readers. They publish books across different genres, including dark fiction, horror, mystery, suspense, science fiction, romance, paranormal, fantasy, and young adult fiction. They mainly publish e-books, but many of their titles are also available in paperback format.
MuseItUp Publishing is closed for submissions right now, but they do have annual reading periods. Check their submissions page for announcements and to learn more about their submission guidelines. If you’d like to get in touch with MuseItUp, you can send them a message through their online contact form.
IFWG Publishing Australia is a small publishing company that specializes in horror, dark fiction, dark fantasy, science fiction, and other genres for adult readers. They also publish fiction for young adults, teens, and children. Some of their recent dark fiction titles include Contrition by Deborah Sheldon, Shadows on the Wall by Steven Paulsen, The Grief Hole by Kaaron Warren, and Peripheral Visions by Robert Hood.
IFWG Publishing Australia is not accepting submissions at this time, but you can subscribe to their newsletter to receive updates about any open calls in the future.
Are there any other publishers of dark fiction that should be on this list? Please tell us about them in the comments box below!
Hiten Vyas is the Founder and Managing Editor of Writing Tips Oasis.