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Frequently asked questions

Proposal Stage

Will I know if HP is currently accepting proposals?

We are always happy to consider proposals, as we publish new titles year round.

If you publish my book, do I still own the rights to it?

Yes. Copyright remains in the name of the book’s author.

Do I have to pay anything to publish with The History Press?

No. We are a traditional publisher, not a vanity press, and compensate our authors with royalties based on net sales of their books.

I have a manuscript that is historical fiction. Would The History Press be interested in publishing this?

No. The History Press remains committed to its original mission, and regional nonfiction histories are our top priority.

Should I submit a representative writing sample?

Yes. It is extremely helpful for our editors to be able to see the kind of writing an author would bring to a project, as well as an example of a particular book’s content.

Do I have to finish my book before contacting The History Press?

No. Whether a book is merely in the beginning stages of conception or an entire manuscript, we are happy to consider it with a completed proposal form and image and writing samples.

How long should my proposed book be? How many pictures should it include?

We offer several series of varying lengths and content, but generally books contain around 30,000 to 40,000 words and from 30 to 70 images. Please see Series Descriptions (For Authors -> Series Descriptions) for more details.

The local historical society I work for will want to purchase a large order of this book when it comes out. Should I mention that in the proposal?

Yes, the Commissioning Editor for your region will be happy to discuss author and organization purchases at proposal stage, as such factors may improve a project’s likelihood of being accepted. Also, the steep discounts available to authors and affiliated organizations are even higher before contract execution.

Can I mail you my completed manuscript for consideration?

Yes. If you would like it returned, please include postage accordingly.

Where are you located?

The History Press headquarters is in Charleston, South Carolina but we commission titles in all fifty states.

Which commissioning editor should I talk to about my proposal?

Please submit all proposals to

The local historical society will charge fifty dollars per image. Does The History Press pay for this, or will I have to put up the money for the images?

Unfortunately, we cannot fund expenses that authors incur during the research and writing processes. Ideally, authors are connected adequately with their local historical organizations to be able to obtain the necessary materials at little or no cost, but this is not always possible. Keep in mind, however, that authors earn royalties on books sold, which helps them to offset costs.

Where should I look for images?

Local historical societies and archives are excellent resources. The Library of Congress also features an online collection of digital images, many of which are available in quality resolution at no charge. Please visit their website,, for further instructions, and feel free to request additional assistance from your editor.

Do I get paid for publishing with The History Press?

Yes, we compensate our authors with royalties based on net sales.

Does The History Press pay advances?

No, we are unable to offer advances to our authors.

Why should I limit my book to just one town? Don’t you want to sell as many books as possible?

What sets The History Press apart is its focus on local and regional history; we seek to present the legacy of each place in an accessible and relatable manner that will appeal distinctly to its residents and visitors, not to cover as wide a breadth of history as possible.

Project Delivery & Publication Schedule

How do I submit my materials?

You may email us your text and image files or send them through the mail on CDs. Though they are not preferred submission methods, we also accept hard copies.

Can I/do I have to design my own cover?

One of the many advantages of working with The History Press is the opportunity to utilize its professional design team, who may incorporate author suggestions into cover layout at their discretion.

When will my book come out?

Typically, we release a book four to six weeks after it is sent to print, which usually happens about two months after we receive the manuscript, captions and images.

Whom should I talk to about setting up book signings and events?

Please see our Publicity page for more information.

Will my book be in Barnes & Noble and other chain retailers?

Yes, in locations that are pertinent to the book’s subject. We have a dedicated sales representative for national chains/key accounts who ensures that History Press books gain the chain store prominence they deserve.