Castle Gate Press is a Christian publisher accepting unsolicited fiction manuscripts. We will accept both agented and un-agented manuscripts for novellas and full-length novels for adults, young adults, and new adults meeting the following requirements.
The novel must be complete and contain:
– a Christian worldview* (although it may or may not contain an overtly Christian thread)
– at least a touch of speculative fiction. Examples: time travel, steampunk, spiritual warfare, super powers
– no profanity **
– no excessive violence
– no gratuitous sexual content; sweet romances only
– for a novel, between 70,000 – 100,000 words
* Authors whose work will be submitted for awards need to be willing to endorse the beliefs contained in the Apostle’s Creed.
** An exceptional manuscript that contains profanity may be considered for a new mature-audience imprint at CGP, at the discretion of the editors, ineligible for awards.
We do not accept or publish:
– short stories
– children’s books
– genre fiction without a touch of the fantastic.
We expect our authors to:
Cooperate with the editors
Assist Castle Gate Press with editing
Market their own book(s), enter contests
Seriously consider asking friends for marketing funds via a Kickstarter campaign
Cross-promote with other CGP authors
Actively participate in social media
Have a website and/or blog.
We highly recommend that you have your work reviewed by other authors before submitting. We are seeking polished manuscripts with intriguing plots, compelling characters, and an understanding of basic grammar, punctuation, and writing style. If you have only had friends and/or family read your writing, seriously consider participating in a critique group. The writing lessons you learn there will help you grow as an author. Professional editing can also bring your manuscript to the next level. Beware of submitting your manuscript before it is fully ready.
What we offer:
Why go with Castle Gate Press instead of self-publishing? You can start your career with a sense of confidence, knowing that someone (us) has chosen you. We help you get your author platform going and help you get used to the marketing all authors have to do.
Authors must submit a manuscript, and it must pass through our acquisition process. Our primary method of printing is POD, print on demand, which is the only one that makes sense for a small publisher in today’s economic climate. We also publish in ebook format, and where possible in audio format. We provide professional-level editing, cover art, and print book layout.
Our editing sets us apart from many small presses. We have a team of seasoned editors, and your work will see a number of sets of eyes.
You people have been wonderful for my skills.” — CGP author Timothy Ayers.
Our goals, and how we get there:
Our aim is to nurture authors and draw a wider audience to works written by Christians.
Finances work like this: you provide the manuscript, we produce the print book and ebook, and as they sell we take proceeds until the production costs have been met. Then we split proceeds 50-50 with you. You pay nothing up front. We are imitating the funding mechanism used by Jeff Gerke for Marcher Lord Press.
We are a shoestring operation. So how do we afford to do all this? Our dedicated editors are not charging us market rates, and we do a lot of the work ourselves.
Funding marketing becomes the biggest issue. If you are willing to do a Kickstarter campaign, with help from us, your book will get a big boost right at the beginning and we can help with the marketing. This is what we recommend, and how our first book has been so successful.
Otherwise, the marketing is on you. We help, of course. We provide plenty of marketing advice to our authors. We send ARCs to major reviewers, coach authors on dealing with local press and retailers, and provide market exposure through our website, blog, Facebook, and Twitter. If there is funding, we run 99-cent sales on our ebooks from time to time, published to email advertisers like BookBub.
But the primary fact of publishing these days is that the most successful marketing is what authors do themselves through their own network of contacts. We make sure our authors know this. We assist the author in creating or growing a platform that stays with the author, not the publisher.
What to send:
– a query letter
– first five pages of your manuscript. Attachments are OK with us.
– Email to submissions”at”castlegatepress.com
If you haven’t heard back in four weeks, consider it a “no, thank you.” We will, however, try to get back to you in a more personal way.