New Submissions News!
Our submissions window will be open once more for April 2024. We will be open for pamphlets/ chapbooks and full length collections.
For pamphlet submissions we will require entire manuscripts which are either finished or at the very least late drafts. For full length poetry collections we require a sample of between six and ten poems, plus a description of the full work (please don’t submit unless you have a finished or very late draft ready). For both types of submission we will also require our (in)famous one pager which should describe your poetry journey so far and your hopes and aims for your book. There is no charge to submit to us.
We are looking for a few books for 2025 and more for 2026. Our submissions window will be open for one month only and will close at midnight on Apr 30!
What are we looking for?
We are looking for pamphlets (20-40 pages of poetry) and full length collections of poetry (40+ pages of poetry – please don’t contact us with questions about book length, layout, type-setting etc – if your work is chosen any issues to do with number of poems or lenght of book can be dealt with at a later stage). Manuscripts should be full and complete although we will consider high quality drafts. We require full pamphlets to be submitted, but are accepting sample submissions (6-10 poems) for full collections that should be accompanied by a full description of the work. (Please don’t submit a sample for a full collection unless you have a finished or very late draft of the whole book ready.)
When would we like them?
Our month-long submissions window will open from 00:01 on Saturday 1st April 2023 and will close at midnight on Sunday 30th April. No submissions (unless previously agreed) can be considered outside of the submissions window.
How would we like them?
Manuscripts should be attached to your application email as a separate file on either Word or PDF. The file should be titled with both your name and the provisional title of the manuscript like so: AuthorName_TitleOfManuscript. Send your submission to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
What would we like with them?
We would like your manuscript to be accompanied by a one page document detailing your poetic journey so far – favourite poetry books or poets read, favourite poetry performers watched, favourite poetry events attended actually or remotely – (you should have answers for all of these) – alongside a full list of any workshops attended, publishing history, readings given – (it matters less if you don’t have answers for all of these).
And finally details of the ambitions you have for the book you hope to make and what things you intend to do personally, outside of submitting to Verve, to help it reach a wide audience. One page is the maximum allowed for this part of the submission.
PLEASE NOTE: Those with difficulties accessing physical poetry books, performances and workshops due to disabilities or limited incomes can and should absolutely still please apply. Tell us instead about online readings and events you have attended and enjoyed and which of the mountains of free online poems you have read, loved and been influenced by.
What kind of things do we like?
If you know us at all, you will know the answer to this. Like our sister festival, we have a love and respect for poetry in all its forms and from all sources. We love poetry designed for the page that is read-out-able and poetry designed to perform that is readable in book form. We love poetry shows, long narrative poems, short quirky poems, one poem manuscripts, seventy poem manuscripts, dramatic poems, quiet poems, free-form poems, fully formed poems, heavily edited poems, poems written in one go. But they must be excellent, generous, open-minded, ambitious and informed. We not only welcome but would encourage submissions from poets who identify as BAME and/or LGBTQ+. And we are also keen to see manuscripts that involve more than one language or which are bi-lingual.
NB While we are a Birmingham UK based press and do publish local poets that we admire, we publish poets from all corners of the UK and beyond.
What don’t we mind?
We don’t mind if you submit titles already submitted elsewhere – but do tell us if they are successful and you need to withdraw your submission with us in a timely manner.
What we will and won’t do for you
There is no charge to submit to Verve Poetry Press during this window. Similarly we do not insist that you buy a book from our website before submitting (although we truly hope you have already or will do soon).
Also those who are chosen to publish with us won’t be charged for the privilege. Instead, they will be paid royalties on the books we sell and have the opportunity to buy copies at a deep discount to sell themselves. But all that is for later once this process is over.
We will give you a provisional answer on the success or otherwise of your submission within eight weeks of the submission window closing. Unfortunately we won’t be able to give any feedback on submissions which are unsuccessful.
If you are unsuccessful, please don’t give up on your poetry! We are very particular about what we publish and have an aesthetic that we are aiming to achieve. Your poems may well be accepted elsewhere having been unsuccessful with us – a lot already have! Take a breath, get some input, and carry on!
We are excited and look forward to reading your wonderful work! 🙂