Swann + Bedlam is taking submissions!
That’s right, Swann+Bedlam, the world’s most ignored underground press run by two indie authors, is now ready to publish books by other people. Come join the cool kids.
What we are looking for?
Anything that’s good, whether it be lit fic, horror, fantasy, or memoir. We’re particularly interested in books that smash, stretch the limits of, or just don’t care about genre. Yeah, we said it - fuck genre!
Who we are looking for?
We are looking for good writers! We don’t care about identity politics. Don’t even bother telling us your ethnic identity or sexual orientation. If your book is good we will publish it. If it’s not we won’t.
What is Swann+Bedlam?
Swann+Bedlam is a small press. Small presses are not like big presses. Big presses are subsidiaries of global corporations with powerful networks of influence. Big presses can get your books onto the shelves of major retailers, into libraries, onto TV shows, and onto successful blogs and podcasts. Big presses can get your name out there and make you sound like the second coming of Jesus, even if your writing sucks ass. They can market the shit out of your books without having to spend a dime because they are embedded in global media empires. Small presses like us are much more limited. We do not have the same resources when it comes to marketing. Don’t be fooled - anything a small press can do, you can probably do yourself with a bit of research and some hard work. In fact, publishing with a small press is often worse than self-publishing, because:
Many small presses are run by only one person
Many small presses are run by - let's face it - idiots
Many small presses are run by semi-illiterate philistines who couldn’t write or edit their way out of a paper bag and will not edit your book properly
Many small presses are run by people who can’t use indesign and won’t typeset your book properly
Many small presses are run by people with poor taste who will put a really shitty cover on your book
Many small presses spend zero dollars on advertising and rely on a very small social media presence to sell books - and therefore don’t sell any books, even if those books happen to be good
Many small presses have shitty websites that look like they were designed in the late 1990s
Many small presses are run by cronyistic circle-jerkers who only publish books written by friends, friends-of-friends, or cousins
Many small presses want you to write in a ridiculously niche genre that they invented and won’t consider submissions that don’t fit with their narrow branding
Many small presses are run by pretentious phonies who project a false aura of success while engaging in what is essentially a kitchen sink enterprise
Many small presses are run by stingy parasites who will spend the absolute minimum amount of time and effort producing and marketing your book, then ask you to promote it yourself and try to ride your coattails to success
So why publish with Swann + Bedlam?
What you get from Swann + Bedlam:
If we choose to publish your book, we will make sure it is edited as close to perfection as possible. We will edit the shit out of your book until it is a lean, mean, mind-blowing machine.
We will typeset your book so that it looks beautiful in both paperback and eBook. We’ll use sexy fonts and make sure your book isn’t riddled with weird formatting errors.
We’ll make sure your book has a decent, eye-catching cover on it. In most cases we will commission quality original artwork.
Marketing and Promotion
We’ll market your book through various channels. We’ll include your book in at least one paid promotion, something many publishers won’t do. We'll use various avenues to distribute ARCs of your book.
We’ll pay you 50% of the gross royalties. But don’t get your hopes up - most writers make next to nothing, and small press books often sell poorly. Especially lit fic.
The Swann + Bedlam seal of approval
With the Swann+Bedlam seal of approval, you don’t have to venture into the cold, unknown darkness of publishing by yourself, and your ego will be protected from collapse if anyone challenges the quality of your work. With the Swann+Bedlam seal of approval, no one can challenge your status as a legitimate writer. You can say “I’m a traditionally-published author!” You can even look down on self-published authors, even if they are better writers who make more money than you. We’ll even protect you from your own self-doubt and lack of creative confidence. You won’t have to face the daunting prospect of believing in yourself 100% - you can just believe in yourself a little bit, and we’ll carry you the rest of the way.
We will not pretend to be more successful than we are or make false promises about how much you are going to earn. We will give you honest feedback and will not sugar coat it.
Ready To Submit?
Send submissions to: email@example.com
Paste the first 2,000 words of your work into an email. If you want, add a little blurb to let us know where the story is going. If you don't follow these guidelines chances are we'll read it anyway and get back to you... UNLESS YOU SEND AN ATTACHMENT THEN WE WILL JUST DELETE IT. DO NOT SEND AN ATTACHMENT.
If we like it we'll request the full manuscript from you.
WE DO NOT SEND FORM LETTERS. If we decide not to publish your book we will give you a reason why.
HUMAN TEST: Please address email to Swann + Bedlam to show that you read our guidelines. Emails simply addressed to "the editors" or not addressed at all have probably been spammed all over town. We don't have a problem with sloppy seconds but we do have a problem with generic and lazy.
Here are answers to some frequently answered questions, a few of which are quite silly.
Q: Will you charge a fee to publish my work?
A: No. This is not a vanity press. We invest time, money, and resources into the books we publish. We might even lose money in the process of producing and marketing your book. One of the main reasons to get your work traditionally published is so that someone - in this case us - can undertake financial risk instead of you.
Q: Who will retain copyright of the published works?
A: This is not work for hire. Authors retain the copyright to their own work. Swann and Bedlam gain exclusive publishing rights for a set period of time.
Q: Will you steal my visionary manuscript and use it to get fabulously rich?
Q: Will you reject my manuscript but plagiarise all my priceless and amazing ideas?
Q: Do you publish fanfiction or work that blatantly breaches copyright?
Q: Do you publish work that has been previously self-published?
A: Only if it absolutely blows our minds. Otherwise we prefer previously unpublished work.
Q: Are you interested in previously published work that is not currently in print or under contract?
A: Yes, we are very interested in preserving great fiction from obscurity.
Q: Will you publish ranty manifestos?
A: Yes, the crazier the better
Q: Do you publish cookbooks?
A: Only ones written by anarchists
Q: Will you publish nonfiction?
A: YES! If you've written a memoir about your time living in the tunnels under Las Vegas or if you are the head of a weird cult, we'd love to hear from you. If you've spent the last three years of your life developing a tried and true no fails method for calling upon the Dark Lord himself and you want to publish a DIY guide, we want to hear from you! Black magick sex manual? Sure, why not!? Do you like taking pictures of dead things? Perfect! We want to hear from you. Send us ideas/proposals/or excerpts from your work right now!