Submission Guidelines

The Basics
(Please note these guidelines are for stand-alone novels only. If you are submitting to an anthology, please follow the specific guidelines on the anthology call page.)

Digital proposals should be emailed to Please include a 1,ooo word  synopsis of your work in the body of the email followed by the first chapter of the book.  DO NOT include any attachments in your email. If we like what we see in the email, we will contact you for more. Attachments will be left unopened and your submission will be ignored.

  • We consider works between 60,000 and 100,000 words.
  • Your synopsis should include a beginning, middle, and end. Don’t worry about ‘spoilers’ because we want to make sure you have the whole story figured out.
  • If you do not hear back within six weeks of submitting work, assume your work isn’t a good fit for us, and that you are free to submit elsewhere.
  • We only accept queries via the
  • We do not accept simultaneous submissions.
  • We do not accept previously published work.
  • Do not submit until your work is completed. If we ask you for more, we’ll want it right away.
We almost never consider manuscripts which use the following themes:

  • Incest (Blood incest nor pseudo-incest.)
  • Characters under 18 (physical or emotional) In sexual situations
  • Non-consensual sex or rape, unless it serves a greater story and is NOT intended for titilation. (Subject to editorial approval.)
  • Beastiality involving non-sentient beings. (Vampires/Shifters of all kinds are okay, in other words, ‘real animals’ are NOT acceptable.)
Evaluation Guidelines
Excellence in writing

Above all, you must show us that you treat writing as a craft. Sloppy writing will get your work tossed in the slush pile faster than anything.   E.M. Forster wrote a story ‘can only have one merit: that of making the audience want to know what happens next.  Tell us a story that keeps us turning the pages–either in horror, trepidation, excitement, or wonder.


Research has shown there are only six basic plots. What that means is you have to deliver on quirky characters, unique plot twists, and settings. What about your work is different from what everyone else is writing?


Should suit your characters and setting. Modern slang in historicals and flowery language in  gritty contemporary romances makes us roll our collective eyes. Nothing takes a reader out of a story quicker than dialogue that doesn’t ring true to the time, place, or speaker. Also, avoid excessive dialogue tags (“he said”/”she proposed”/they queried,” b); these tend to slow the pace, and are often completely unnecessary (she proffered). Here’s a great exercise: Try writing a scene where there are absolutely no dialogue tags at all. Can you differentiate solely by the word choice and syntax of the speaker? If not, work it until you have no doubt.


While much of what Cwtch Press publishes falls into the romance or erotic categories, we want story. Even in the shortest pieces of work, characters need to change throughout. Make sure you have a plot. Even if it’s a simple one.


The right setting almost becomes a character itself. Pick one that works to support your plot and other story elements.


Keep your POVs consistent and separate. No head-hopping, please. If you have snark, use it. Are you hilarious? Great! We want unique voices that carry the story.


It sounds trite, but your characters should leap off the page, punch us in the face and steal our spot in the coffee line.


Please send us your story when it is ‘as good as you can possibly get it.’  You will ultimately be the prime cheerleader for your story and you must love it. Even if you are tired of reading and revising it, you must still stand behind your work as being the strongest it can possibly be.

Useful Writing Links
We’re including some links for you. If you’re new to submitting work or simply looking for some great bits of advice, check these out.

  •  The Fictionary online editing tool is awesome! You upload your novel in MS Word and then use their scene checklists to verify content, character traits, point of view shifts and other nifty things. Check it ou!
  • The Creative Pen podcasts are great if you like to listen to your writing advice.
  • Here’s a helpful article on self-editing.
  • Write it Sideways has a wealth of information. We particularly love this article on filtering words.   One of the easiest way to clean up your manuscript it to do a search on those filtering words and rewrite to avoid them.
  • Another useful site is Career Authors. Find your writing tics. Are you using ‘seem’ or ‘just’ often in your text? Do a search and see how many times those words are in there. Here’s a lovely article on crutch words.
  • The Erotica Readers and Writer‘s Association’s website has a wealth of information for erotica authors.

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