Thursday, January 19, 2023

ECW Press seeks fiction for adults and teens and nonfiction

As Little As Nothing by Pamela Mulloy
published by ECW

ECW Press

665 Gerrard Street East
Toronto, ON M4M 1Y2

Note: You can hang out and chat with quick brown foxes and vixens on my Facebook page (here). Just send a friend request to Brian Henry.

Also, if you’re not yet on my newsletter, send me an email, including your locale, to: ~ Brian

ECW Press publishes an eclectic list of nonfiction, poetry, and fiction, including YA fiction — but no books for children. ECW accepts fiction and poetry submissions by Canadians only; there are no citizenship restrictions on writers submitting nonfiction. Like everyone else, they are “are especially seeking submissions from underrepresented voices, including Black, Indigenous, and people of colour; LGBTQ2IA+ people; people living with disabilities; and women.”

ECW also has a BIPOC mentoring program. Details here.

Each of the acquiring editors has different interests. You might pitch your manuscript to the best match. Click on the name for a link to details of what they’re looking for:


Pia Singhal is the newest member of the team at ECW and like all new editors, she needs authors. She’s looking for “a lot” in both fiction and nonfiction. 

Jen Sookfong Lee is also a fairly new editor. She acquires fiction and nonfiction that “ that explores the complicated identities, intersections, and interests of our contemporary world, whether that’s a historical novel with a subversive twist, or a memoir that reveals a story we haven’t yet seen in literature, or a collection of short stories with a varied cast of characters who collide in unexpected ways.” 

Jack David, Co-Publisher. Acquires fiction and nonfiction. “I enjoy reading unsolicited proposals; I live in hope. I sometimes find myself reading a line or a passage to anyone who happens to be within earshot. I do this spontaneously because I like to share what I’m enjoying; and then I observe myself and register the fact that I want others to take pleasure in what I’m reading. That’s the impetus for signing up a book.

David Caron, Co-Publisher. Mostly acquires fantasy and sci-fi.

Jen Albert

Jen Albert, Editor. Acquires speculative fiction of all kinds for adults and teens: innovative space opera, horror, fantasy, literary post-apocalypse, epic sci-fantasy, etc. “I’m especially taken by fiction that is uplifting and fundamentally good-hearted, as in Katherine Addison’s The Goblin Emperor, one of my favorite-ever novels.” 

Jen Knoch, Senior Editor. Acquires fiction (though generally not genre fiction, and nonfiction, including memoir, pop culture books, especially music books, health, social issues, women’s issues, and the environment. She especially loves when those things intersect.

Jennifer Smith, Acquisitions & Business Development. Acquires nonfiction, “with some emphasis on business, leadership, entrepreneurship, corporate history, and celebratory or commemorative books for organizations and institutions. And I never turn down the opportunity to consider a great cookbook!

Michael Holmes, Executive Editor. Acquires literary fiction, poetry, and nonfiction. “I look for smart, culturally-, socially- and politically-engaged writing that takes risks, pushes limits, colours way outside the lines.” 

Query ECW at: 

Put your manuscript’s title in the subject line. Include a sample of the manuscript 10–15 pages. For fiction and non-fiction, 15–25 pages. For nonfiction, please also send an outline of the entire work as you envision it. (For tips on writing a good nonfiction proposal, check out this sample from ECW author Michael Hingston.)

See full submission guidelines here.

An upcoming pop classic from ECW

ECW is also looking for Pop Classics: 

“You might be best known for writing about music, politics, primates, or the adventures of made-up people, but ECW wants to give you a chance to expound on something different. On that thing that makes an evangelist of you, that makes you hold party guests hostage long after the coffee has gone cold or has you giving a well-intentioned Skinny Puppy CD to your grandma or Empire DVDs to your dad.

“ECW staffers share your pop culture passion, and we’re looking to expand our successful pop culture list with a new series that gives you a soapbox to preach from. Pop Classics will offer intelligent but accessible arguments about why a particular pop phenomenon matters. Possible subjects include TV, music, books series/authors, film, and video games. It can be something nostalgic (Babysitters Club novels) or contemporary (BeyoncĂ©), as long as it’s something meaningful: to you, to its genre, to pop culture, and maybe even to society as a whole.

“Running between 20,000 and 40,000 words, Pop Classics are short books that pack a big punch, and just might be the thing to give your dinner companions some peace . . . or give you a legitimate reason to keep on talking.”

To submit a Pop Classics proposal, send an email to Jen Sookfong Lee at:

Put “Pop Classics Proposal: Friday Night Lights” (or whatever your subject may be) in the subject line.

Your proposal should include the following elements:

1. Who: A CV that details your writing experience and includes links to previously published work

2. What: An outline of your proposed book: Your central thesis and a proposed table of contents to show us how that argument would develop

3. Why: Some basic information on the subject, target audience and why the time is right for writing about this topic

See full guidelines for a Pop Classics proposal here

Anne Shone, Executive Editor,
Scholastic Books, Canada

If you’re interested in meeting an agent and in getting published, don’t miss our online How to Get Published workshop, Sunday, February 26, with literary agent Erin Clyburn of Howland Literary Agency. Details here.

If you’re particularly interested in writing for children, be sure to sign up for our online Writing for Children & for Young Adults workshop Saturday, January 28, with Anne Shone,  Executive Editor of Scholastic Books Canada. Details here

And most especially, don’t miss our online Writing Little Kid Lit course Tuesday afternoons, Jan 24 – March 21. Details here.

Beyond that, Brian’s schedule continues to take shape:

Still space in these weekly classes:

Online: Writing Little Kid Lit, Tuesday afternoons, Jan 24 – March 21. Details here–Still room in this course!

In-person: Exploring Creative Writing, Thursday evenings, 7 – 9 p.m, Jan 26 – March 30. {no class, March 23}, in Burlington.  Details here– Still room in this course!

Writing Retreats: 

March in Muskoka Writing Retreat at Sherwood Inn, Friday, March 24 – Monday, March 27, 2023. Details here.

Algonquin in June Writing Retreat at Arowhon Pines Resort, Friday, June 9 – Monday, June 12. Details here


Navigation tips: Always check out the Labels underneath a post; they’ll lead you to various distinct collections of postings. For book publishers in general, see here {and scroll down}. For more children’s and young adult publishers, see here {and scroll down}.

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