The O’Brien Press is once again open for submissions! They are looking for great children’s fiction, as well as nonfiction for both children and adults.
The O’Brien Press have been working with talented authors and illustrators for more than forty-five years and know that great books come from all kinds of experiences, so they enjoy hearing from as wide a range of aspiring authors as possible. They are particularly keen to discover writers who represent an increasingly diverse and modern Ireland – writers from different racial, ethnic, cultural and socio-economic backgrounds, writers who identify as LGBTQ+, writers with disabilities, etc.
As an Irish publisher, The O’Brien Press have found it increasingly important to have authors who are available to attend local events in bookshops, schools and libraries. As such, while they are open to submissions from authors all over the world, they are much more likely to publish authors based in Ireland.
How to Submit
If you would like to submit your work, please email the following to firstname.lastname@example.org:
- A cover letter
- A synopsis
- A completed submissions form
- The first three chapters of your manuscript
You can download our submissions form here. For children’s picture books or other submissions under 1,000 words, please submit the work in its entirety.
The O’Brien Press accept electronic submissions in the form of Word docs or PDF attachments. Any other forms (including Google Drive/Doc links, zip files, WeTransfer files, etc) will not be read. Submissions sent without a completed submissions form will also not be read.
In order to reduce paper waste in the interests of the environment, they would prefer to receive submissions electronically. However, they will also accept postal submissions as an alternative option. If you are posting your work, please follow the above guidelines and send your work to:
The O’Brien Press
12 Terenure Road East
Dublin D06 HD27 Ireland.
The O’Brien Press publish mainly children’s fiction and non-fiction, adult non-fiction and a select number of adult novels. They generally do not publish poetry or academic works. If in doubt, take a look at the website and the books currently available for sale; this is a good indicator of whether or not your submission will suit the list.
What The O’Brien Press are Excited About
Adult Non-Fiction: Humour, sport, photography, Irish history and other Irish-interest titles.
Children’s Non-Fiction: Open to almost any topic or theme – although they do ask that it has some particular relevance for Irish children.
Children’s Fiction: They’re looking for great stories across all age groups, from picture books to Young Adult Fiction. There are no limits here and they’re always hoping for our next great children’s book to emerge from the submissions process. They especially enjoy historical fiction (you can see the periods covered by their children’s fiction here: obrien.ie/childrens/history-through-fiction), contemporary stories, humour, fantasy, mysteries and adventure. They’d also like, as much as is possible, to see a diverse range of characters appear in these stories – in terms of background, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, physical abilities, etc.
A note on picture books: If you’re submitting a picture book text, it is not necessary for you to commission an illustrator to provide illustrations. However, it is helpful to know if you plan to illustrate the story yourself.
This list is not exhaustive. It is simply a rough guide to what The O’Brien Press get most excited about when reviewing submissions. If in doubt, send it anyway!
Firstly, and most importantly, please allow a minimum of 8-10 weeks’ response time. The O’Brien Press receive a lot of submissions – on average over 100 per month. Due to this high number of unsolicited manuscripts requiring review by the editorial team, sometimes this process can take longer.
Secondly, due to time constraints, The O’Brien Press is not in a position to offer critiques of any unsolicited manuscripts we receive.
Finally, please do not forget to put your contact information on your submission. Any submission received without contact information will not be read.
See here for further details.