Submitting to us

Since 2004 Penned in the Margins has published over 75 books, spanning poetry, experimental fiction, criticism and creative non-fiction. Our output is between six and ten new titles per year. We are currently accepting submissions of unsolicited manuscripts and project proposals for 2019 onwards.


Before sending your work to us please consider the following:

We aim to publish exciting, risk-taking new poetry, fiction, creative non-fiction and literary criticism.
We are interested in innovative writing, and in performance.
We do not publish single poems or previously published books (including self-published books).
We edit all our books rigorously; if this will upset you, please do not submit your manuscript.

As a general rule we do not pay advances.
A track-record of magazine or pamphlet publication, readings, residencies and/or creative projects is desirable.
We encourage submissions from all writers, regardless of age, gender, race, religion and background.
Although we have published writers from overseas, our focus is on UK-based literature. If you are not based in the UK, please consider carefully whether we are the right publisher for your work.

How to submit

If you would still like to be one of our authors, please send a sample of your work (up to ten pages; in one Word document or PDF) with a short covering note and biography to Do not send submissions by post (or by hand). Please do not telephone our office with queries.

Response time

We aim to respond to your submission within three months.


We are unable to give you specific feedback if your submission is rejected, so please don’t ask. It’s nothing personal, just that we’re dead busy publishing what we’re already working on. If you require editorial feedback, we would recommend you try Arvon, The Poetry School or The Literary Consultancy.

If you’re unclear whether we’re the publisher for you, we recommend buying and reading some of our books to find out.


We are not currently accepting unsolicited manuscripts for pamphlets.


We will consider proposals of experimental novels, novellas and fiction that stretch the boundaries of the form. Please include a synopsis and a sample chapter with your submission.


We will consider proposals of non-fiction and creative non-fiction in the following (and related) subject areas: alternative approaches to landscape and place, new nature writing, psychogeography, cities and urban studies, London history and society, literary criticism, literary history.

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