punctum books welcomes submissions from authors working in any field in the humanities, social sciences, sciences, and fine arts/design, and outside of the university proper as well. We are especially interested in neo-traditional and unconventional scholarly work that productively twists and innovates upon academic norms, with an emphasis on books that fall length-wise between the article and the monograph—id est, novellas, in one sense or another, although we honestly welcome any work, longer or shorter, that would qualify as “smart, stylishly written, and weird.” You want to unleash a 900,000-word academic tome upon the world? Send it to us and we’ll seriously consider it. Want to write a 1-page monograph? Ditto. Works that take formal risks and/or engage with supposedly outmoded or antiquarian genres are also extremely welcome (for example, the florilegium, the breviary, the bestiary, the inter-office memo, the telegram, the reel-to-reel tape, the book of hours, etc.). We are also open to publishing the proceedings of small symposia of highly creative quality that take up any variety of humanities and para-humanities assemblages, and in gonzo avant-garde fashion (and yes, we know “avant-garde” is a suspect and even an exhausted term, but we are also hoping to rehabilitate it). Proposals for essay volumes that are creatively conceptualized and expertly curated around specific themes, subjects, debates, approaches, and the like are also welcome. We also direct you to see our imprints HERE, where you might also find a welcoming harbor for your work.
MANUSCRIPT SUBMISSIONS // If you would like to contact the Co-Directors in charge of Acquisitions with a book (or any other sort of) proposal, write to Eileen Fradenburg Joy (firstname.lastname@example.org) and/or Vincent W.J. van Gerven Oei (email@example.com), and provide an abstract [~500 to ~1,000 words] detailing your idea. If we like the idea, we’ll ask for a more detailed formal proposal, which will then be reviewed by members of our Advisory Board with expertise in the proposal’s subject area(s). After (and if) formal proposals are green-lighted, completed manuscripts are reviewed by 2-3 experts in the author’s field(s), who decide whether or not to recommend publication, typically contingent upon revisions. In general, we follow the AAUP’s guidelines for “Best Practices for Peer Review,” but we are also an author-centered press and we are open to authors choosing the sort of review process that they feel will best serve the development of their work: double-anonymous, single-anonymous, open and transparent, online and crowd-based, etc. Philosophically, we feel that open-access publishers should be embracing more open forms of review, and our feelings accord fairly well with the opinions expressed HERE, HERE and HERE.
We receive an overwhelming number of book proposals and aim to publish approximately 50 titles per year. In order to manage as best we can the flow of proposals as well as our production schedule, our preferred procedure for the submission of more detailed book proposals and/or completed manuscripts is for authors to send those to us any time between May and August of each year, giving us September through December of each year to make decisions about which titles we will publish in the subsequent year. Prospective authors can, of course, send us brief pitches any time they like (as explained above) and if you absolutely have a burning manuscript on your hands that you are itching to send to us in a month other than May, June, July or August, feel free to do so; we just can’t say for certain whether we will have the adequate time necessary to review it immediately. But who can say? We believe in serendipity as much as we believe in organized schedules.
All works published by punctum books are licensed under a Creative Commons ‘BY-NC-SA’ 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, go HERE. We are also open to authors choosing their own Creative Commons license or other form of Copyleft licensing.
Nota bene // punctum is one of the very few Open Access presses in the world that does not charge what are known as Book Processing Charges (because we feel they are inherently anti-democratic and exacerbate the historic inequities of academic publishing, yet they are fast becoming the standard protocol for Open Access publishing), but we are also a non-profit, public benefit corporation with 501(c)(3) status (application pending) that operates largely without any external (public or private) support, so if any of our authors are situated at universities in countries where funds have been made available (such as through Research Councils UK), we do ask that authors at least inquire through their own channels if any funds are available to help defray the cost of producing an Open Access title with punctum. Authors who have access to such support help us to publish even more books than we normally would be able to, and on behalf of authors who have no access to any funding whatsoever. These charges are typically tailored to the editing and design requirements of a given project, but usually fall anywhere between $3,000 and $5,000 per book (in other words, these charges do not have a profit margin built in, as they often do with commercial academic publishers and even university presses who increasingly have to justify their bottom line — we follow the lead of ubiquity press in this matter). Again, Book Processing Charges are not a requirement — our decision to want to publish anyone’s book is solely based on the merits of the work and ideas that are shared with us, and if a project excites us and is beautifully executed and is given a thumbs-up during our review process, we are going to publish it no matter what.
ARTBOOK SUBMISSIONS // If you are an artist interested in doing an exhibition catalog or other type of artbook with us, contact Associate Director Marget Long (firstname.lastname@example.org).
IMPRINT SUBMISSIONS // If you are interested, more specifically, in one of our Imprints, such as Brainstorm Books, Dead Letter Office, Electric Press or Thought Crimes (among others), contact that Imprint’s director or editor (contact information for Imprints available HERE).
PUBLICITY + CULTURAL RELATIONS // If you are an existing author who wants to talk to us about the publicity of your book, or a cultural and intellectual arts organ (gallery, bookstore, publisher, museum, etc.) that wishes to collaborate with punctum (for whatever reasons), please contact our Associate Director in charge of Publicity and Cultural Relations, Arthur Russell (email@example.com).
INSTRUCTORS + REVIEWERS // If you are a review / reporting outlet who wants review copies, or a teacher who needs desk and/or examination copies, please contact Eileen Fradenburg Joy (firstname.lastname@example.org).
REPRINTS + RIGHTS PERMISSIONS // If you have a query regarding foreign distribution rights, translations, or any other sort of re-use and or re-distribution of a punctum title, or any portion thereof, contact Eileen Fradenburg Joy (email@example.com).
BOOKSELLERS // If you are a bookseller, you should know that punctum very purposefully does not list its titles with commercial wholesalers such as Ingram, so if you wish to purchase titles directly from punctum books, at a 40% discount off list price + punctum pays the shipping for orders within the US (for international shipping, we split the cost 50-50), please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
LIBRARIES // If you are a librarian seeking a print copy of one or more of our titles, please contact Eileen Fradenburg Joy (email@example.com). Our titles are also available via the Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB), and we also offer institutional library supporting memberships, through which we: (1) make all of our titles available to libraries in a variety of file formats; (2) share direct access to our metadata and programming interfaces; (3) provide usage statistics and other reader-based metrics; (4) ensure digital preservation; and (5) follow best practices for metadata and cross-reference management. For more information on how to become an institutional library member-supporter of punctum, please also contact Eileen Joy (firstname.lastname@example.org).
punctum is a member of the Radical OA Collective. Formed in 2015, the Radical Open Access Collective is a community of scholar-led, not-for-profit presses, journals and other open access projects. Now consisting of over twenty members, we promote a progressive vision for open publishing in the humanities and social sciences. What we have in common is an understanding of open access as being characterised by a spirit of ongoing creative experimentation. We also share a willingness to subject some of our most established scholarly communication practices to creative critique, together with the institutions that sustain them (the university, the library, the publishing house and so on). The collective thus offers a radical ‘alternative’ to the conservative versions of open access that are currently being put forward by commercially-oriented presses, funders and policy makers.
IMAGE: Hieronymus Bosch, The Ship of Fools, c. 1490-1500