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COVID-19 Information

While Penn Press staff are currently working remotely, all of our departments remain fully operational. Please note that the Press continues to accept proposal and manuscript submissions, and is eagerly maintaining reviews both internal and external. The Acquisitions Department prefers communication to be done by email at this time, unless prior arrangement has been made with a specific editor. The Production Department has gone fully digital (paperless) for all phases of copy editing and proof review, and the best way to contact staff in this department is still via their office email. The Marketing Department remains fully committed to bringing your book to as wide an audience as possible, and all marketing staff can be reached by email at this time.

Manuscript Submissions

Manuscript submissions are welcome in fields appropriate for Penn Press's editorial program. The Press's acquiring editors, and their fields of responsibility, are listed in the Contact Us section of this site. Although we have no formal policies regarding manuscript proposals and submissions, what we need minimally, in order to gauge our degree of interest, is a brief statement describing the manuscript, a copy of the contents page, and a reasonably current vita. Initial inquiries are best sent by email to the appropriate acquiring editor.

Guidelines for Final Manuscript and Artwork Preparation

A manuscript that is clean and legible can, in the long run, reduce problems to a minimum and speed the publication process. Although no one expects authors to submit letter-perfect manuscripts, final manuscripts should meet certain specifications.

Preparing the Typescript for Editing and Production

  1. Provide a complete set of wordprocessor files for the final manuscript, including front and back matter and illustration captions. These files can be saved to a CD or a flash drive, or sent as email attachments, as long as they match the paper copy character for character.

  2. When preparing the wordprocessor files, save each chapter with its notes in a separate file labeled with your last name and the chapter number. Use the same software (Microsoft Word, if possible) and hardware throughout the manuscript. If you are sending a CD or flash drive, label the media with your name, the date, and the software and hardware used. With these materials submit a completed Manuscript Submission Checklist.

  3. Manuscript should be double-spaced and in 12-point Times New Roman font. Leave one-inch margins on all four sides of the page. Turn off automatic hyphenation and do not justify text; ragged right margins are preferable throughout. Use minimal formatting. To reiterate, everything—text, notes, block quotations, captions, bibliography—must be double-spaced, size-12 font.

  4. Number pages consecutively (front matter with lowercase Roman numerals, text with Arabic numerals). Do not start each chapter on page 1. In multiauthor works, or if tables are numerous, number the tables by chapter, thus: Table 1.1, Table 1.2. Number charts and illustrations the same way. If charts, illustrations, or maps are numerous, please make a list of them to be included in the front matter.

  5. Verify all statistics, quotations, notations, versions of proper names, and transliterations. Run your wordprocessor's spell-checking program before you give us the final manuscript.

  6. Accents and any other special characters must be in place throughout the manuscript. Include special, non-Roman fonts if necessary (e.g., Arabic, Hebrew, Greek).

  7. Block quotes (usually, quoted material ten lines or more in length) should be double-spaced, indented, with an extra line above and below. Use the ruler function to indent the text, instead of using the tab key at the beginning of each line.

  8. Notes should be numbered sequentially by chapter. Use superscript Arabic numerals in the text (no parentheses, boldface, etc.). The numbers should follow the passages referred to; if the passage is a block quotation, the reference number should come at the end of the quotation, not after the author's name or at the end of the textual matter introducing the quotation. The notes themselves must be double-spaced and printed as endnotes, not footnotes. In most instances they will be set at the back of the book, but in the manuscript they must be at the ends of the individual chapters.

  9. To be complete, the manuscript front matter should include a title page, table of contents, and—if the book is going to include them—list of illustrations, list of tables, dedication, foreword, and preface.

  10. Illustrations and captions must accompany the final manuscript. Compile a list of captions (double-spaced) that includes both descriptive text and credit lines. Photocopies of all illustrations should be placed in position in the manuscript printout, each illustration with a copy of the caption printed or taped on the front.

For general information, including guidelines on the use of capitals and italics and the preparation of notes and bibliography, consult The Chicago Manual of Style. Editors of multiauthor works are encouraged to consult, in addition, the Press's Guidelines for Volume Editors.

Preparing Artwork for Publication

Illustrations should be submitted with the final manuscript; otherwise an editor cannot work effectively or efficiently. Artwork may come in either digital or camera-ready form and be of two kinds: (1) line drawings, which include graphs, charts, maps, and the like; and (2) halftones, i.e., photographs or material that must be reproduced with continuous gradation in tone like that of a photograph.

Digital and camera-ready art should be prepared in accordance with the Press's Guidelines for Artwork Submission. Halftones in camera-ready form should be printed no smaller than 5" x 7" on glossy stock. Images and contrast in the tones of the photograph should be sharp and distinct.

Compile a list of captions (double-spaced) that includes both descriptive copy and credit lines. Photocopies or printouts of all illustrations should be placed in position in the manuscript. If only a detail of an image is to be printed in the book, be sure to indicate legible crop marks in the photocopies.

Line drawings submitted as camera-ready copy will be sent to the printer for photoreproduction in the form submitted, and this is the form in which they will appear in the finished book. (They may be submitted in rough form for copyediting, before their submission in final form.) The Press has no staff or facilities for redrawing this material.

Helpful Terms

Front matter includes title page, dedication (if any), table of contents, list of illustrations or tables (if any), and foreword or preface. A foreword is generally written by someone other than the author of the book. A preface introduces the book as book, discussing its significance and aims, its scope, structure, and origins. An introduction, by contrast, introduces the subject matter proper of the book. It may occasionally be included in the front matter, but often it comes at the beginning of the body of the book; the introduction should therefore start on page 1.

Back matter elements in the final manuscript include notes (multiauthor works may have notes at the ends of the individual essays), volume bibliography (if any; often this is not needed if full information is provided in notes), a list of contributors (for multicontributor works), and acknowledgments. A list of contributors should consist of two or three sentences about each contributor, including name (as it appears with the chapter title), affiliation, and brief background information. Acknowledgments may include thanks to individuals and institutions as well as permission credits for previously published work.

Permission is needed to reprint extensive blocks of text; poetry (a complete poem or ten or more lines), charts and graphs (if used in the same format as the source; the information itself needs only proper attribution, not permission); photographs and illustrations. For guidance in determining what needs permission, consult this helpful page of permissions FAQs.


The Penn Press Marketing Department handles all functions of selling and promoting books, both domestically and overseas. For more information on what you can expect from the Marketing Department during your book's promotion, please see our Marketing Guide.

Royalty and Tax Information for International Authors

United States tax laws require that the University withhold 30 percent of payments to individuals who live outside the U.S. and do not possess a U.S. Taxpayer Identification Number--that is, either a Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN)--or are ineligible for an exemption. Nonresident individuals eligible to receive royalties after withholding must complete at least the name, addresses, and signature lines of a W-8BEN tax form. This will allow us to process royalty checks less the required 30 percent withholding.

Individuals who are not U.S. citizens and who live in other countries that have a tax treaty with the United States, however, may qualify for an exemption from this withholding requirement. To claim an exemption under an income-tax treaty, the W-8BEN requires that you provide a U.S. taxpayer identification number in the form of either a SSN or a ITIN or the tax identification number issued by your country of residence.

Follow this link to download a W-8BEN form in PDF from the IRS:

Click here to read our instructions regarding the W-8BEN form.

Archiving and Digital Repositories

Click here for information about our policies regarding self-archiving and digital repositories.

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