Before submitting a proposal to us, please ensure that your project falls within our publishing scope, which includes both scholarly and trade books. TTUP is currently accepting submissions in the following areas:
- All scholarly projects that intersect with Texas, the Southwest, the Great Plains, and the American West, including history, literature, environment, and politics.
- Indigenous Studies
- Borderlands Theory and Literature
- Regionally Focused Queer and Gender Theory
- New Perspectives on Frontier Literature
- Peace and Conflict studies, from the Vietnam War to present (scholarly and trade)
- Modern Jewish History and Holocaust Studies
- Texas sports biographies for popular audiences and young readers
We at TTUP are committed to pursuing scholarship from black, indigenous, people of color, and women. We are striving to build our list with works whose topics and themes speak directly to more diverse experiences and perspectives. These are works that have been left out of the scholarly conversation and ignored by publishers, ourselves included. If you have a project that does not fit these areas exactly and makes a contribution you feel we might be ignoring, please feel welcome to email our acquisitions editor.
Please note: We strive to respond personally to all submitted inquiries–no form letters here. However, we do not guarantee a response to projects that fall far outside our publishing scope or to proposals clearly sent as a mass email to many publishers.
Submitting a Proposal
Please submit a single file PDF book proposal to our Acquisitions Editor Travis Snyder ([email protected]) that includes the following elements.
- A cover letter, which includes: a short abstract of the work, word count, intended audience
- Sample Text: the table of contents and an introductory chapter or two
We have a strong preference for emailed submissions. Our Acquisitions team works remotely, so mailed hard copy submissions can take months longer to review.
Please do not call any TTUP staff member to pitch your book. We need to review your written materials. Feel welcome to email Travis with any questions about your submissions.
The Publishing Process
Once acquisitions received a submission, you can expect an initial response within two weeks. Over 80 percent of proposals are rejected. If we are interested in possibly publishing your book, we will request the full manuscript for exclusive consideration. All manuscripts undergo a rigorous peer review process, which can take several months.
In addition to the standards of peer review laid out by the Association of University Presses, we at TTUP are committed to using peer review to change who holds power in the publishing industry.
A 2019 survey found that the publishing workforce was 76% white and a staggering 85% white at the editorial level. 80% of both book reviewers and literary agents are white. While University Presses specifically are committed to finding the kinds of books often passed over by commercial publishers, our demographics can and do blind us to valuable stories that need to be told.
Peer review is supposed to be an equalizing mechanism. The blind review of manuscripts means that a project is evaluated for the power of its argument, the breadth of its research, and the sheer necessity of its storytelling. We know, however, that pure meritocracy is a myth that reinforces white hegemony. We can do better.
The problem is compounded by the fact that tenured professors are standard reviewers for academic presses such as TTUP. According to a 2016 study, 78% of tenured faculty members are white and only 38% are women. These disproportionate demographics mean that brilliant research and important stories will continue to be neglected.
We at TTUP are committed to strive to have at least 50 percent of our total peer reviewers, who will be paid equitably for their time and expertise, to come from our community of black, indigenous, people of color, non-cisgender and non-binary scholars. We are simultaneously committed to equal distribution of gender identity of our total peer reviewers. At the same time, we recognize that service to the profession is undervalued by promotion and tenure committees. Undervalued and uncredited work at universities often falls of the shoulders of women and BIPOC. We at TTUP will attempt to balance these concerns while also giving these same people a voice in contemporary scholarship.
We are committed to this not just because it is right but because it helps us meet the mission of Texas Tech University, which is to advance knowledge through innovative research and scholarship and to commit to ethical leadership.
Your editor will work with you through the review process and guide you through any necessary revisions. After revisions are made (and sometimes taken through another round of peer review), the manuscript will be reviewed by the TTUP Editorial Committee for final approval to publish.
We usually offer a contract after successful completion of peer review. We are happy to work with both agented and unagented projects. We will occasionally offer an advance contracts in special circumstances or to authors with proven publishing track records.
Please do note that it is an author’s responsibility to secure third-party permissions for any copyrighted material to appear in a book, including illustrations and photographs. Individual, high resolution files must also be supplied by the author. TTUP cannot guarantee that all supplementary material will be printed in the book.
From the submission of the final manuscript file, after editorial committee approval, it can take 8-10 months to produce the physical book. We work with authors every step of the way for copyediting, typesetting, design, and marketing.