Cornerstone Press seeks book-length manuscripts in poetry, short fiction, and nonfiction and makes publishing decisions based on the clarity of thought and the marketability of the manuscripts submitted. We read and evaluate manuscripts throughout the year. We only consider original material not previously published in book form for our fiction/nonfiction series, though we do consider “collected” or “selected” poetry manuscripts from established poets for our poetry series on a case-by-case basis. We do not publish chapbooks of poems. Please query the publisher prior to sending a manuscript proposal with questions regarding these issues.

Cornerstone Press strives to support diverse investigations into and experiences with the Midwest. In particular, we encourage writers of underrepresented communities to submit their work for consideration in all series.

Cornerstone Press Submission Guidelines

When submitting a manuscript for consideration by Cornerstone Press, please include the following items:

1) Please indicate either in your cover letter or email submission which series your work will be considered for. The press is actively acquiring in its Legacy, Portage Poetry, and Back Home series.

2) A one-page, single-spaced cover letter. Recommended content includes a paragraph describing the manuscript you are submitting, a second paragraph describing your writing experience, and a final paragraph containing any additional information relevant to the work submitted. Please address your letter to: Dr. Ross K. Tangedal, Cornerstone Press. Within your letter, please include your mailing address, email address, and phone number.

3) A synopsis (1-2 pages double-spaced) of the work submitted.

4) A complete manuscript that is typed, double-spaced, and includes page numbers, along with your name and the manuscript title on the first page.

Submit the cover letter, synopsis, and manuscript digitally to:

*Note: We will only consider manuscripts sent digitally. Manuscripts and materials sent via post will not be evaluated, nor will they be returned to the sender.

Additional Guidelines:

  • Fiction and nonfiction manuscripts should be a maximum of 70,000 words.

  • Poetry manuscripts should be a minimum of 10,000 words.

  • Poetry submissions for the Portage Series may include a thematic overview in lieu of a synopsis.

Cornerstone Press typically focuses on up-and-coming regional authors, but we are open to all original, well-written, and polished submissions. We edit using the Chicago Manual of Style, so please keep this format in mind when submitting your manuscript. If your manuscript is accepted by another publisher, please inform us via email. We look forward to reading your work. You may contact us at