Thank you for your interest in Second Story Press! We accept samples of unsolicited manuscripts. Please read the guidelines carefully before sending us your writing or illustrations.

Second Story Press is proud to be a Canadian feminist press, and to publish books that our entire team believes in. You can get to know us on our Team Page! Before submitting, please take a look at the kind of books we publish to ensure that yours is a good fit for our list. We frequently receive submissions which, while the books are of high quality, are not right for us.

Our list is a mix of fiction and nonfiction, with books for all ages from infants to adults. We look for manuscripts dealing with the many diverse and varied aspects of the lives of girls and women, and those that fall under the banner of social justice and children's empowerment. We want to represent diverse voices and experiences, and are particularly looking for authors and illustrators from communities that have traditionally been underrepresented in books. These include (but are not limited to) works by creators who are Indigenous, Black, people of colour, people with disabilities, and members of the LGBTQIA+ community.

Please note that we do not publish poetry, short story collections, traditional romance novels, rhyming picture books, or books with anthropomorphized animals.

Please keep in mind that as a feminist press, we are looking for non-sexist, non-racist, and non-violent stories.

We focus on publishing Canadian authors (citizens or permanent residents of Canada who are currently living in Canada). We rarely make exceptions to this rule.

We accept simultaneous submissions, but we ask that you let us know if your manuscript is accepted elsewhere.

If you feel that your manuscript belongs with Second Story, please send it according to the instructions below. You do not need to have an agent to submit a manuscript to us.

Here’s what to include when you submit your work to us:

1. Query Letter

This is how we get to know you and get our first impression of your work and writing! Please include a brief biography, a concise summary of your book, and why you're the best person to tell this story. For all juvenile work, please identify the intended audience/age range for your book (e.g. ages 6-8).

Questions to consider and answer:

  • How does your book fit into Second Story’s list?
  • How is it different from similar/competing titles that have already been published (by us or any other press)?
  • How does your book fit into the wider market (ie. who is it written for)?

If you're unsure how to write a query letter or would like a refresher, there are plenty of great resources online! We recommend BookEnds Literary Agency's YouTube series, and particularly their video "The Anatomy of a Perfect Query Letter."

2. C.V.

Please provide information about any relevant work, previous publishing credits if you have them (if not, don’t worry—we happily publish debut authors), and academic history where applicable (particularly beneficial for nonfiction submissions). If you have a website, active social media profiles, a Goodreads page, or anything similar, please include them.

3. Synopsis of Your Work

Tell us what happens! Attach a brief synopsis (no more than 500 words) that gives us a sense of the plot and important events, and include the ending of the work. Yes, we’re requesting spoilers—they can be important selling features of the book!

4. The Manuscript

Adult Fiction and Nonfiction: Send the first three chapters of your manuscript. If we are interested, we will request the full manuscript.Children’s/Teen Books: Send the first three chapters of your manuscript. If we are interested, we will request the full manuscript.Children's Picture Books: Send the entire manuscript. You do not need to include illustrations if you are not a professional illustrator. As noted above, we do not publish rhyming picture books, or books with anthropomorphized animals, so we ask that you do not submit them to us.

Due to the incredibly high volume of submissions we receive, it may take 7-10 months for us to respond to your submission. If your manuscript is accepted elsewhere before you hear back from us, please let us know by responding to your original email of submission.

We thank you for your patience as we carefully consider each submission we receive and we do so on our own time, outside of work hours.

Submitting Digitally (Preferred)

Please email your submission package to Please adhere to the following instructions as it makes it quicker and easier for us to process your submission:

  • Format the subject line of your submission email as such: “ADULT/JUVENILE* FICTION/NONFICTION, AUTHOR NAME, PROJECT NAME” (e.g. “Adult Nonfiction, Christina Yang, In the Midnight Hour” or “Juvenile Fiction, Sally Draper, Don’s Day at the Beach”). This allows us to quickly search for your submission if needed, and to classify your submission properly.
  • *Books for teens are classified as Juvenile. For all juvenile books, please ensure you specify the intended age range for your work in your Query Letter.
  • Your query letter can be in the body of your email, but please attach your C.V., synopsis, and manuscript to your email in Microsoft Word (.doc, .docx) or PDF format. Do not put your manuscript in the body of your email.

We respond to submissions beginning with the earliest received. You will receive an automatic email response to your submission; please consider this a confirmation of receipt and do not inquire about the status of your submission as it will merely lengthen the queue.

Submitting By Mail

As noted above, we prefer a digital submission. Submissions sent by mail may take longer than the typical 7-10 months as we are currently working out-of-office due to COVID-19 safety protocols.

Send your submission package to our office address:

Second Story Press
Attn: Submissions
20 Maud Street, Suite 401
Toronto, ON, Canada
M5V 2M5

  • All mailed submissions must include a SASE (self-addresses stamped envelope, stamped with sufficient postage) so that we are able to return your manuscript and/or send you a reply. We cannot return your submission without this SASE, nor can we send you a reply letter.
  • We do not accept manuscript submissions on disk/CD/USB.
  • Please keep a copy of your manuscript. Although we make every effort to keep it safe and sound, we cannot assume responsibility for your only copy.

We only accept portfolios from Canadian illustrators.

Please send samples of your work and a C.V. either by mail to our office address or by e-mail to Please put “ATTN: Illustrator’s Portfolio” on the package or in the subject line. We will only respond if interested, but will keep your portfolio on hand for future projects. If sent by mail, your portfolio will not be returned.