Submission Guidelines

Chelsea Green specializes in books that promote the “politics and practice of sustainable living.”

Before you submit a query or proposal, please browse our website, look closely at our titles to see the kinds of books we publish, and carefully review our submission criteria. We receive annually more than 800 submissions and publish approximately 30 titles.

We specialize in books on:

  • Organic gardening and market farming, from home- to professional-scale
  • Sustainable agriculture and permaculture with an in-depth, how-to approach
  • Local and global agricultural movements and healthy food supplies
  • Natural building
  • Animal husbandry and draft power
  • Alternative economic models with a focus on sustainability and social justice
  • Renewable energy sources and energy conservation
  • Cookbooks with unique approaches to cuisine
  • Food politics and other narrative approaches to sustainable food
  • Fermentation, cheesemaking, baking, and other how-to approaches to food production
  • Natural science and place-based environmental narratives
  • Natural health and herbal healing
  • Simple living
  • Radical politics and activism
  • Environmental journalism
  • Cutting-edge science interpreted for lay readers (under our Sciencewriters imprint)

We seldom publish books that are:

  • Regionally focused
  • Academic or educationally based (although many of our books are adopted for academic courses)
  • Agricultural and gardening based but do not promote organic methods
  • New-Age or spiritual
  • Popular topics covered by many other books
  • Offering top-down political policy prescriptions

We do not publish:

  • Novels
  • Poetry
  • Children’s books

Submissions that stray too far from our guidelines will not be considered or acknowledged.

To submit a query for consideration:

A query letter should be one or two pages long and give an overview of your book’s topic, along with information about you as an author (who you are, why you are the right person to write this book, evidence that you will be able to complete a high-quality manuscript in a timely fashion). If we think there is a reasonable chance that we might pursue your book, we will request a full proposal.

To submit a full proposal, include most or all of the following items in a single Word document:

  • A cover letter summarizing the book
  • A preliminary table of contents
  • An expanded table of contents with one- or two-paragraph summaries of each chapter
  • Marketing research such as:
    • Descriptions of other books on the same or similar topic, and an explanation of why your book is different
    • Any special sales potential (organizations that may want to buy large numbers of your book; specialty catalogs or stores that don’t usually sell books but might be interested in yours; events where attendees will be interested in your book)
    • Events where attendees will be interested in you as a speaker
    • Other countries where demand for your book might be high
  • Your target audience
    • Who they are—be specific
    • Why they will be interested in your book
  • Biographical material about you (expanded from that in the query letter)
  • Two sample chapters
  • Details on your art program, if you plan to have one—including types of images (photos, line illustrations, charts, graphs, or other); an estimate of how many of each type; and whether you envision the art program in color or black and white. If your book features photographs or illustrations, please attach samples of these separately. Do not embed them in your Word document.

Do not send files greater than 8MB.


Via Email

We strongly prefer to receive query letters and proposals via email, sent to [email protected]

Please include the word “query,” your last name, and the book title in the subject line, i.e., “Query—Jones—Nature vs. Nurture.”

Via Postal Mail

If you do not have access to email and must send your query or proposal through the mail, please send by regular U.S. mail. Submitted materials will be returned only if accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope.

Response Time

Due to the volume of submissions, response time can take several weeks. Thank you for your interest in Chelsea Green Publishing.