New Submission Policy

  • By: Jessica Faust | Date: May 04 2007

Earth Day has come and gone, but the work we do to help the earth stay healthy needs to be an ongoing process. That’s why BookEnds is announcing a new, greener submission policy.

No longer will we be accepting unsolicited proposal submissions. Like most agencies, BookEnds now only accepts queries or e-queries. Our updated guidelines can be seen on our Web site’s Submissions page.

This is actually something we’ve discussed for quite some time. We like proposal packages because we like having the chapters in front of us. However, the amount of paper we are recycling on a weekly basis is astounding. Therefore we will now be accepting only those proposals we’ve requested.

So, if you have an unsolicited proposal with us already, that’s fine. We’ll read it. And if you are about to send one that’s been requested, continue to do so (via snail mail). However, if you are about to send an unsolicited proposal, stop. Send a query instead.

Hopefully this will help cut down on our submission response times and of course save the planet.


10 responses to “New Submission Policy”

  1. I am so thrilled to hear you are doing this! Yay for BookEnds. I was just comparing agents/editors that have switched to submitting electronically.

    I’ve been thinking about going more green myself. (Already changed the lightbulbs and started a garden!) I need to do more research on what else I can do as just one random person.

  2. Avatar Lesley says:

    Good for you! I can’t imagine the number of trees it will save. I’m so glad everyone is trending toward greener methods these days.

  3. Avatar mbg says:

    I don’t know if you’re interested in going to electronic submissions, but in case you’ve considered it, here’s a tip. The best electronic submission system I’ve come across is the one used by Glimmertrain, a literary magazine. It is easy, easy, easy. It also lets author’s view their submissions and lets the editors reply online. Here is their link…

  4. Shelli —

    One thing you can do that will also make your life better (at least if you’re like me!) is to get yourself taken off all those blasted catalog lists. I have specific advice on how to do that in this post and in this one. Those posts are almost a year old and though I still get the blasted Pottery Barn catalog (I’ve never managed to get off that one!) the rest of them have ceased.

    Of course, it’s now time to the annual “take me off your list” thing again for the new companies that have taken to sending me annoying mail!


  5. Avatar Travis Erwin says:

    Just curious why you have decided to limit submission to a one page query. I understand and applaud your consciousness of the eco system, but I have heard numerous agents say a lot of really good writers can’t write engaging queries to save their life. Why not let authors paste one or two pages into the body of the email for the sake of looking at the actual writing?

    I’m not asking to be critical in any way. After all this is y’alls business and you are free to run it anyway you see fit. I have just always been curious about agents that make decisions without seeing the actual work. And of course most of us writers hate queries and feel the body of our work is much stronger and more indicative of our talents so we hate to live or die by our query alone. At least I do.

  6. Avatar jfaust says:


    That’s a good question. We’ve found that when a book is engaging enough for us the query usually is too and vice versa. If I dig through my files all my current clients wrote a query that might not have been perfect, but it was intriguing enough to make me want to read the writing.


  7. Avatar William Snyder Jr. says:

    I prefer hardcopy to e-copy just because I’ve been doing it for 40 yrs. Trees are a renewable resource, but I certainly don’t advocate overuse and waste. I recyle my paper until it has no use but the recyle bin. The papermills in my region love the recyled paper. They need it to make new stuff. >Bill

  8. Avatar Lisa says:

    I am hoping that more agents will move to electronic submission as well. I live in New Zealand so snail mailing packages to the USA is extremely expensive.

  9. Avatar Eryl Ravenwell says:

    Good to know, because you’re first on my agent list. 🙂

  10. Avatar allan dsouza says:

    Great to know this. I wholly sympathize with your point of view, times being what they are with everyone – and his / her mother – churning out a novel. Point is, frankly, will this work in my favor? Thanks, anyway, for at least not closing all submissions.