Submittable Spotlight: University Presses

University presses play a vital role in the rapidly shifting world of publishing, holding space for scholarly, creative, and literary books that enhance the academic world and well beyond. Submittable is proud to be used by over 15 outstanding university presses to facilitate submissionshere’s a look at five great ones.

Yale University Press

The mission of Yale University Press, founded in 1908, is aligned with that of the university, focused on “the discovery and dissemination of light and truth.” The press releases around 300 new books per year in 18 subject areas, with an archive of over 8,000 titles.

Yale University Press has used Submittable since 2013 to administer the Yale Series of Younger Poets and the Yale Drama Series, in that time receiving close to 13,000 submissions.

The Yale Younger Poets Prize, established in 1919, is the oldest annual literary award in the U.S. and one of the most esteemed. The contest awards publication to a single poetry manuscript by an author residing in the U.S. who has never released a full-length book of poems. An earlier series stipulation that entrants be under the age of 40 was recently lifted. Previous recipients and judges of the prize include some of the most renowned poets in the country.

The Yale Drama Series began in 2007 and awards a prize of $10,000 as well as publication and a staged reading at the Lincoln Center. The series is supported by the David Charles Horn Foundation and features prestigious judges in the field each year, including inaugural judge Edward Albee. In 2018, Pulitzer-prize winning playwright Ayad Akhtar selected “God Said This” by Leah Nanako Winkler from over 1,600 submissions from 50 countries.

North Dakota State University Press

North Dakota State University Press (NDSU Press) is dedicated to peer-reviewed regional scholarship, publishing reference books, anthologies, reprints, papers, proceedings, monographs, fiction, poetry, and nonfiction. In operation since 1950, the press imprint was changed from North Dakota Institute for Regional Studies Press to NDSU in 2016.

NDSU Press has been using Submittable since 2015 to collect and review full-length book submissions in a variety of categories.

NDSU Press uses Submittable to accept general fiction and nonfiction manuscript submissions year round from authors whose work is significantly linked to the region. A special reading period in late summer is dedicated to poetry chapbooks related to life on the plains and prairies.

Newer endeavors include The Contemporary Voice of Indigenous Peoples Series, focused on authentic stories and scholarly works by Indigenous writers, and the Heritage Guide Series, featuring traveler’s guides to the heritage landscapes of North Dakota and the northern plains. The press maintains a manuscript reviewer database to assist with its double-blind review process, reviewing applicants in diverse fields through Submittable.

University Press of Colorado

Founded in 1965, University Press of Colorado is a nonprofit scholarly publisher that includes the Utah State University Press imprint and partners with nine universities (12 campuses) in both states. Along with its Utah State University Press imprint, University Press of Colorado has published over 1,000 books and releases at least 40 new titles per year.

University Press of Colorado has used Submittable since 2013 for book proposals and full manuscripts in six academic disciplines.

The press accepts submissions in anthropology, archaeology, composition, folklore, history, and natural history, using a rigorous peer-review process to get selected titles to press. In 2017, including their own publications, partnerships, co-publishing, and distribution, University Press of Colorado released 55 new titles in the last year, nine of which were award winners.

Southeast Missouri State University Press

Southeast Missouri State University Press (SMSU Press) is both a high-quality book publisher and home to a robust training program for students of publishing. Founded in 2001, this smaller-scale press supports the university’s undergraduate minor program in Small Press Publishing.

Beginning in 2011, Southeast Missouri State University Press has used Submittable for general queries, its Proud to Be series, a first novel prize, and a poetry book prize.

The annual Dorothy and Wedel Nilsen Literary Prize for a First Novel, endowed by Wedel Nilsen, awards press publication and $2,000 to a writer with no previous novel publication. One annual winner of the Cowles Poetry Book Prize receives $2000, as well as publication, 30 author copies, and distribution. Proud to Be is an anthology series that includes prose, poetry, interviews, and photographs by military personnel, veterans, and their families.

SMSU Press also uses Submittable for its literary journals Big Muddy and The Cape Rock. Between these journals and its press, SMSU has used the platform to review over 4,500 submissions.

University of Georgia Press

Founded in 1938, the University of Georgia Press seeks to publish exceptional literature and scholarship by authors from around the world, releasing over 60 new books per year. University of Georgia Press uses Submittable to facilitate two book prizes and a nonfiction series.

Since adopting the software in 2010, the University of Georgia Press has received close to 5,000 submissions, averaging at least 300 submissions per book prize category each year.

The Flannery O’Connor Award celebrates short fiction collections with a $1,000 prize and publication. Since its start in 1983, the award series has published over 50 short-story collections. The Georgia Poetry Prize is a national competition and a newer endeavor honoring an outstanding poetry collection in English each year with $1,000 and a book contract. The University of Georgia Press also reviews book proposals for Crux: The Georgia Series in Literary Nonfiction.

Over 20 individuals encompass the press’ review team, engaged in multi-round review processes using Submittable for each submission category. Additionally, University of Georgia Press publishes books from one series (AWP Program Award) and three competitions (the Cave Canem Poetry Prize, the National Poetry Series, and the VQR Poetry Series) for which the judging and selection process is handled out of house. All four of these organizations also use Submittable to receive submissions.


One of the strengths of the Submittable platform is its versatility; it can truly be used to collect and review online content of any kind. This flexibility is one of the most enjoyable things about being part of Submittable’s team: Seeing how many ways our customers choose to use the software, and the incredible works they produce as a result.

University presses like these continue to amaze and inspire us. Find out more about the wide variety of organizations doing great things with Submittable here.

Rachel Mindell

Rachel Mindell is a Special Projects Editor at Submittable. She also writes and teaches poetry. Connect with her on LinkedIn.