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Betty is an imprint of WTAW Press dedicated to publishing books by women for everyone.

Historically, women authors and their stories have been underrepresented in the publishing industry. Betty seeks to bridge this gap by actively seeking and promoting their work. By prioritizing books by authors who identify as women, we aim to play a crucial role in fostering diversity, representation, and inclusivity within the literary world. We amplify the voices of women from diverse backgrounds, including cultures, ethnicities, races, ages, sexual orientations, socio-economic statuses, and identities.

Betty is an innovative publishing program that creates a partnership between authors and the publisher. By providing mentorship, resources, and opportunities within a collaborative environment, Betty supports and enables authors to develop their craft and establish their place in the literary world, all while taking an active role in shaping Betty's catalog.

Authors form a partnership with Betty to contribute their time, talent, and skills in the publication and promotion of their books and the books of their fellow authors. This collaborative effort among authors resembles the operations of a publishing collective. Unlike a publishing collective, however, Betty first and foremost engages authors with a traditional publishing contract that pays royalties. Betty embraces the editorial process, bears all publishing expenses, and takes responsibility for book production and distribution, promotion and marketing.

Betty authors enjoy all of the benefits of WTAW’s traditional publishing program, wherein WTAW bears all the costs, including editing, design, marketing, distribution, and payment of author royalties. Betty authors profit from all of the hallmarks that have made WTAW a successful and respected publisher: the high quality of editorial care, attention to book design, dedicated marketing and publicity efforts.

Authors benefit from the reputation WTAW has earned as an award-winning press dedicated to publishing and championing books of urgency, emotional resonance, and enduring significance. Betty’s innovative publishing program takes the key advantages of a collective—the shared workload and support system among authors—and unites it with the key advantages of a traditional independent press. It allows authors more control over their publishing journey while benefiting from the collective wisdom and resources of the group.

Learn more about Betty authors here.

Sign up for our newsletter here and follow Betty on social media, @thebettybooks.

Announcing the results of the Betty December 2023 open reading period

We received many fine manuscripts and are thankful to all who sent theirs. After much deliberation, we identified eight finalists.

Gessy Alvarez, LOVE THE ABYSS

Virginia Bell, LET THE HOUNDS GIVE TONGUE

Erin Osborne, STUCK

Renee Thompson, INTO THE AFTER

* Magda Bartkowska, THIS PLACE WHERE YOU ARE

* Leah De Forest, ANY KIND OF KNOWN TOMORROW

* Ilze Duarte, THE HEART BEATS FASTER

* Kathleen Wheaton, BOB'S BEAUTIFUL HOUSE MUSEUM

Of the eight finalists, we've selected four for publication, each identified with an asterisk.

Congratulations to all!

To learn more about the new authors and their manuscripts, please see the Betty authors page.

For more information, contact us.

We haven't set a date for the next open reading period at this time. You can find guidelines and information on the selection process for the past submission period below. To stay current, we suggest signing up for our newsletter and following Betty on social media, @thebettybooks.

Submission guidelines for Betty

At Betty, our mission is to publish books of prose by women for everyone. We aim to showcase the diversity of women’s voices. With an innovative publishing program, Betty seeks manuscripts from authors who are willing and able to commit to a three-year term of doing the shared work of running a small press under the guidance of our founding director.

Betty strives to be a supportive and inclusive editorial community. We value excellent writing and seek collaborators with a diverse range of backgrounds and lived experiences. By submitting a manuscript, an author is expressing their interest in serving a three-year term participating directly in the development, publication, and promotion of books.

Betty considers full-length prose manuscripts for publication during our open reading period, December 1— December 31. Entries are accepted only via Submittable. Our goal is to publish two–three books a year.

  • Manuscripts should be full-length books of prose (novels, memoirs, narrative nonfiction, collections of stories or essays, hybrid prose) in English.

  • Identifying information for the author must not be included anywhere on the manuscript, including on the name of the file or on the title field in the submission manager. Manuscripts containing identifying information in any way will be automatically disqualified and the entry fee forfeited.

  • Please be sure manuscript pages are numbered.

  • Please include a title page with a total word count.

  • Please include a table of contents.

  • Please use a standard, easy-to-read font such as Times New Roman in twelve-point size. Manuscripts must be double-spaced with at least 1 inch margins.

  • All material must be the author’s own, original composition and free from copyright restrictions. We do not accept submissions generated by AI tools or language models.

  • A manuscript in its entirety must be previously unpublished. It may contain some previously published portions, but it should contain a majority of new work.

  • Any previous published material contained in the manuscript must be credited in the cover letter (see more about the letter below).

  •  Acknowledgements of any previously published material may not be included in the manuscript file. Manuscripts containing acknowledgments will be automatically disqualified.

  • Authors may submit more than one manuscript as long as no material is duplicated between submissions. Each submission requires a separate entry fee.

  • Simultaneous submissions are welcome, but the writer must agree to notify WTAW immediately if the manuscript is accepted elsewhere for publication and to withdraw it from our submission manager.

  • Submissions cannot be edited once they are submitted. Manuscripts selected for publication will go through an editing process with the editors.

  • Cover letters must be entered into the appropriate field on the submission manager. They may not be included in the submission file itself. Submission files that contain a cover letter will be automatically disqualified. 

Cover letters must include the following information:

  • Author contact information (address, phone, email)

  • The work’s title, genre, and word count

  • List of credits for any previously published portions

  • A brief synopsis of the work (short paragraph)

  • A brief author biography with publishing history, if applicable, and that includes an author website address and social media handles

  • Indication if the manuscript is submitted simultaneously and pledge to withdraw it if accepted elsewhere

  • Where you heard about the open call for Betty submissions

Any submission that doesn’t follow the guidelines will be disqualified and the submission fee forfeited.

Submissions are accepted only via Submittable during the submission period. The submission fee is $28.
 

Selection process

In the interest of transparency, we’d like to share our selection process. Our criterion in reviewing manuscripts is the quality of the work. In the first round, all manuscripts are evaluated anonymously by no less than two readers. If a reader recognizes the anonymous manuscript, that reader recuses themselves from the review of that manuscript. Every reader chooses two manuscripts to advance to the second round. All readers review the manuscripts advanced to the second round, and from these, each reviewer chooses their top two selections. Identities of the finalists are revealed to the readers, and from that roster of finalists, we will make our selections.

If we are interested in publishing your manuscript, you'll be invited to a meeting to discuss how Betty authors work together and to answer your questions. The meeting is a chance for both you and the press to decide if our collaborative approach is right for you at this point in your writing life. 

Betty responds to every submission it receives through the submission manager at the email address furnished with the submission. We are committed to responding as soon as possible.

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