10 Best Boston Publishers: How To Find The Right Book Publisher

Last Updated: 

April 28, 2024

Why Finding the Right Publisher is Essential

Writing a book is a fulfilling and creative endeavour, but without proper publication, all that hard work may go unnoticed. The publishing industry can be a tough nut to crack, especially for first-time authors. That's why finding the right publisher who believes in your work is crucial. 

A good publisher can help bring your book to life and ensure it reaches its intended audience. You need a publisher who understands and appreciates your vision for your book. 

They should provide valuable feedback, editing services, and marketing support to ensure that your masterpiece gains traction among readers. You don't want just any publisher; you want one who shares your passion for writing and will work tirelessly alongside you to make sure that your book finds its way into the hands of readers worldwide. 

Key Takeaways on Finding a Boston Based Publisher:

  • Importance of the Right Publisher: The right publisher provides valuable feedback, editing services, and marketing support, ensuring your book reaches its intended audience.
  • Boston as a Publishing Hub: Boston is home to both established publishers and upcoming indie presses, offering a variety of options for authors.
  • Researching Publishers: Use online resources like Publisher's Marketplace or Writer's Market to find potential publishers, evaluate their submission guidelines and areas of focus.
  • Evaluating Publishers: Assess potential publishers based on their areas of expertise, size, and reputation. Consider if they publish similar books to yours, the resources they offer, and their reputation in the industry.
  • Reaching Out to Authors: Connect with authors published by the companies you're interested in for valuable insights about the publishing process and their experiences.
  • Aligning with Your Vision and Goals: Ensure your chosen publisher aligns with your vision and goals for your book, including editorial style and marketing strategy.
  • Persistence: Rejection is common in the publishing industry. Keep refining your manuscript until you find the perfect publisher.
  • Submission Guidelines: Strictly adhere to submission guidelines. Non-compliance can lead to immediate rejection.
  • Editor or Agent Support: Consider hiring an editor or agent to improve your manuscript and guide you through the publishing process.
  • Strong Query Letter: Craft a compelling query letter to pique the publisher's interest. Showcase why your book fits well with their catalogue. Note that some publishers, like MindStir Media, don't require a query letter as they are a hybrid publishing option.
  • Rejection is Common: Rejection is a standard part of the publishing process and doesn't reflect on your worth as a writer.
  • Handling Rejection: Don't take rejection personally. Use it as an opportunity for growth, and consider any feedback to improve your manuscript or query letter.
  • Staying Motivated: It's essential to remain motivated even in the face of adversity. A strong support system and remembering why you started writing can help.
  • Never Give Up: Stay persistent and keep improving your craft. With perseverance, you'll find the right publisher for your book.
Discover Real-World Success Stories

Boston: A Hub of Publishing Companies

Boston has long been recognised as an epicentre of academic publishing companies like Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Beacon Press, and Harvard University Press. This city boasts some of the most respected names in traditional publishing, making it an ideal destination for aspiring authors looking to get their books published. 

Boston isn't just home to established publishers; it's also a haven for up-and-coming indie presses that are passionate about promoting new voices in literature. These companies have fewer resources than larger publishers but are often more flexible when dealing with authors' unique needs. 

With so many options available in Boston alone, there's no reason why you shouldn't find a publisher who resonates with you and will help bring your vision to fruition. If you're serious about getting published in Boston, there are several steps you should take before submitting your manuscript. 

The following sections outline these steps clearly: researching potential Boston publishers thoroughly, narrowing down options based on size and expertise, preparing your submission carefully, and handling rejection like a pro. With a bit of guidance and perseverance, you can find the right publisher who will help launch your writing career to new heights. 

Researching Publishers in Boston

When it comes to finding the right publisher for your book, research is key. Think of it as dating - you wouldn't just blindly accept a proposal from the first person who asks, would you? The same goes for publishing companies. 

You need to know what you're getting into before submitting your manuscript. Fortunately, Boston is home to a number of well-respected publishing companies. 

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Beacon Press are two that immediately come to mind. However, don't limit yourself to these big names. 

There are plenty of smaller presses in the area that may be a better fit for your book. To find these lesser-known publishers, I highly recommend using online resources like Publisher's Marketplace or Writer's Market. 

These websites allow you to search for publishers based on genre and other factors. Plus, they often provide detailed information on submission guidelines and what each company is looking for in a manuscript. 

Now, I know some people may be hesitant to use online resources like this. They may feel like it's cheating or that it takes away from the "art" of publishing. 

But let me tell you something - this isn't 1920 anymore. You can't just walk into a publisher's office and hope they take pity on you and read your manuscript out of the kindness of their heart. 

No, in today's world, you need to be strategic about how you approach publishers. And using online resources is one way to do that. 

Narrowing down your options

Evaluating Publishers based on their Areas of Expertise, Size, and Reputation

One of the most crucial steps in finding the right publisher for your book is evaluating potential publishers based on their areas of expertise, size, and reputation. Not all publishers are created equal. 

Some may have a niche focus or specialise in a particular genre while others may be large publishing houses that can offer significant resources to their authors. When evaluating publishers, make sure to research their catalogues and identify whether they publish books similar to yours. 

Consider the size of the publisher as well – larger publishing houses may have more resources and wider distribution channels but smaller independent presses may offer more personalised attention to their authors. Consider the publisher's reputation in the industry. 

Look for reviews from other authors or industry professionals who have worked with them before. A negative reputation can harm your chances of success with that particular publisher.

We’ve found Ten of our favourite publishers in Boston:

MindStir Media

MindStir Media is a prominent hybrid book publishing company with an office in Boston, providing authors with an extensive range of publishing services. This company offers a variety of book formats, including print, e-book, and audiobook versions. MindStir Media specialises in publishing books across various genres, such as fiction, non-fiction, children's books, and more. Their website, mindstirmedia.com, provides detailed information about the services they offer and showcases some of their notable titles. You don’t need a literary agent to approach MindStir Media due to its hybrid approach.

Page Street Publishing

Page Street Publishing, located in Boston, is known for its beautifully designed and illustrated books. As a mid-sized publisher, Page Street focuses on producing high-quality print books in categories such as cooking, lifestyle, young adult, and children's literature. Highlights some of their bestselling titles, including "The Complete Hummus Cookbook" by Catherine Gill and "The Electric Pressure Cooker Cookbook for Two" by Erica Acevedo. Page Street has a reputation for nurturing emerging authors and illustrators, as well as working with established talents.

Small Bear Press

Small Bear Press is an independent publishing company based in Boston. They specialise in publishing high-quality children's books in both print and digital formats. Their focus is on creating engaging stories that promote positive values and inspire young readers. Some of their popular titles include "Paddy's Forest Trek" by DeeDee Andrews and "The Goodnight Book" by Lori Collins. Check out their website for more information on their offerings and submission guidelines.

Candlewick Press

Candlewick Press, headquartered in Boston, is a leading publisher of children's books, known for their beautifully crafted and innovative titles. They publish books in various formats, such as picture books, middle-grade novels, young adult fiction, and non-fiction. Their diverse catalogue covers various themes and genres. Candlewick's website, showcases some of their acclaimed titles, such as "Guess How Much I Love You" by Sam McBratney and "Where's Waldo?" by Martin Handford.

Jones and Bartlett Learning

Jones and Bartlett Learning, based in Boston, is a leading provider of educational materials and resources for the higher education and professional markets. They specialise in publishing print and digital content in areas like nursing, health professions, public health, and emergency services. Their comprehensive catalogue includes well-known titles like "An Introduction to Community and Public Health" by James F. McKenzie and "Introduction to Health Care Management" by Sharon B. Buchbinder.

International Press of Boston

International Press of Boston is a scholarly publisher specialising in mathematics and mathematical physics. They are known for publishing high-quality research monographs, textbooks, and journals. Their commitment to academic excellence is evident in their catalogue, which includes titles such as "Foundations of Mechanics" by Ralph Abraham and Jerrold E. Marsden, and "Methods of Mathematical Physics" by Michael Reed and Barry Simon. Visit their website for more information about their publications and submission guidelines.

Mariner Books

Mariner Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, is a Boston-based publisher known for publishing literary fiction, non-fiction, and poetry. They offer a diverse range of titles in various formats, including print and e-books. Mariner Books has published works by many acclaimed authors and poets, such as Jhumpa Lahiri, Margaret Atwood, and Billy Collins. Some notable titles include "The Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Atwood and "Interpreter of Maladies" by Jhumpa Lahiri. More information about Mariner Books.

Cengage Learning

Cengage Learning, headquartered in Boston, is a leading educational content, technology, and services company focused on higher education, K-12, professional, and library markets. They offer a wide variety of print and digital products, including textbooks, e-books, and online learning platforms. Cengage Learning is known for its innovative approach to education and has published bestselling titles such as "Understanding Nutrition" by Eleanor Noss Whitney and Sharon Rady Rolfes, and "Calculus" by James Stewart. Visit their website to explore their extensive catalogue and learn more about their offerings.

Clarion Books

Clarion Books is a Boston-based imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, specialising in children's and young adult literature. They publish a diverse range of titles in various formats, such as picture books, middle-grade novels, and young adult fiction. Clarion Books has a long history of publishing award-winning and critically acclaimed titles, including "The Giver" by Lois Lowry and "The Golden Compass" by Philip Pullman. More information about Clarion Books.

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, headquartered in Boston, is a global education and publishing company, providing a wide array of educational materials, resources, and technology solutions. They offer print and digital products across various categories, including K-12 education, higher education, trade publishing, and reference materials. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt is known for publishing both classic and contemporary literary works, such as "The Lord of the Rings" by J.R.R. Tolkien, "Life of Pi" by Yann Martel, and "The Best American Series." For more information about their offerings.

Reaching out to Authors for Feedback

Another way to narrow down your options is by reaching out to other authors who have been published by those companies for feedback. This step can provide valuable insights into what it's like working with that particular publisher and what you can expect from the process. 

Consider joining writing communities or attending writing conferences where you can network with other writers who have been published by certain publishers. Ask them about their experiences – were they happy with how their book was marketed? 

Did they receive good support during editing? These questions can help you gain more insights into what it's like working with certain publishers. 

The Importance of Finding a Publisher who Aligns with Your Vision and Goals

It's not just about finding any old publisher – it's important that you find one who aligns with your vision and goals for your book. This includes everything from editorial style to marketing strategy. 

Make sure that you agree with the publisher's editorial style and that they share your vision for your book. If you are passionate about a particular cause or message, look for publishers who are known for publishing books with similar themes. 

Additionally, consider the publisher's marketing strategy and whether it aligns with your own goals. If you want to reach a specific audience, make sure that the publisher has experience targeting that demographic. 


Finding the right publisher for your book is a complex process that requires careful evaluation and consideration. Do not rush into any decisions – take the time to research potential publishers, reach out to authors for feedback, and find a publisher who aligns with your vision and goals. 

Remember that rejection is common in this industry – don't be discouraged if you don't find success right away. Keep honing your craft and fine-tuning your manuscript until you find the perfect match for both you and your book. 

Preparing Your Submission

The Importance of Following Submission Guidelines Carefully

As a writer, you may have spent countless hours working on your manuscript. You've poured your heart and soul into your words, and the last thing you want is for it to end up in the trash bin. But if you don't follow submission guidelines carefully, that's exactly what can happen. 

Publishers receive hundreds if not thousands of submissions each year, and they simply don't have the time or resources to sift through manuscripts that don't meet their criteria. So before you hit send on that email or drop your package in the mail, take the time to read and understand the submission guidelines for each publisher carefully. 

Pay attention to formatting instructions, word count requirements, and any other details listed. Failure to comply with these guidelines will only result in an immediate rejection letter. 

If a company doesn’t have its submission guidelines posted, like MindStir Media as an example, it’s best to reach out and try to schedule a call or send an email with an intro about you and your book.

Suggest Hiring an Editor or Agent to Help Polish Your Manuscript Before Submitting

There's no denying that writing is a solitary craft. However, getting feedback from others can be invaluable when it comes to improving your work. That's why I strongly suggest hiring an editor or agent before submitting your manuscript. 

An editor can provide constructive criticism on plot structure, character development, pacing, and more. They can help identify areas where your writing could be stronger and suggest ways to improve it. 

An agent can help guide you through the publishing process as a whole—helping you identify which publishers are right for you and negotiating contracts on your behalf. Do keep in mind that hiring an editor or agent comes at a cost—but it's often worth it in terms of both time saved and quality improvement of your manuscript. 

The Need for a Strong Query Letter That Showcases Why Your Book Is a Good Fit for That Particular Publisher

The query letter is perhaps one of the most critical elements of your submission package. It's your chance to make a great first impression and showcase why your book is a good fit for that particular publisher. When writing your query letter, be sure to do your research on the publisher you're submitting to. 

Mention specific titles they've published in the past that are similar to yours, and explain why you believe your book would fit well with their catalogue. Be sure to also highlight any awards or accolades you've received as a writer. 

Remember, the goal of the query letter isn't to summarise your entire book—it's to pique the publisher's interest enough that they want to read more. Keep it brief (no more than one page) and make every word count. 

Submitting a manuscript can be an exciting but nerve-wracking experience for any writer. However, by following submission guidelines carefully, hiring an editor or agent for feedback and support, and crafting a strong query letter that showcases why your book is a good fit for that particular publisher—you'll greatly increase your chances of success in finding the right publisher for your book in Boston. 

Our top pick above, MindStir Media, doesn’t require you to send a query letter, as they are a hybrid publishing option, not traditional.

Navigating Rejection: Turning Your No into a Yes

Acknowledge that rejection is common in the publishing industry

It's no secret that the publishing industry is a tough nut to crack, and most aspiring authors will face many rejections before they see their work hit the shelves. But here's the thing: rejection is not a reflection of your worth as a writer. 

It's simply part of the process. Every writer who has ever been published has faced rejection at some point, and if you let it get you down, you'll never make it to the finish line. 

Offer tips on how to handle rejection and use it as an opportunity for growth

So how do you handle rejection? First off, don't take it personally. It's easy to feel like your work has been rejected because there's something wrong with you or your writing, but that couldn't be further from the truth. 

Remember that publishers receive hundreds (if not thousands) of submissions every year, and there are many reasons why they might pass on your work – none of which necessarily have anything to do with its quality. Instead of dwelling on the negative, use each rejection as an opportunity for growth. 

Take any feedback you've received seriously and consider whether there are any areas where you could improve your manuscript or query letter. Keep in mind that rejection doesn't mean your work isn't good – it just means it wasn't right for that particular publisher at that particular moment. 

Staying Motivated in the Face of Adversity

Of course, staying optimistic in the face of adversity can be easier said than done – especially after receiving multiple rejections in a row. That's why it's important to have a support system in place: friends and family who can offer encouragement when times are tough. 

It also helps to remind yourself why you started writing in the first place. What is it about your story that's so important to you? 

What do you hope to achieve with your work? By keeping these things in mind, you'll be more likely to push through the tough times and keep writing – even when it feels like everything is working against you. 

Conclusion: Never Give Up

In the end, finding the right publisher for your book is a difficult and often frustrating process. But remember: every writer who has ever been published has faced rejection along the way. 

The key is to stay motivated, keep improving your craft, and never give up on your dreams. With perseverance and a little bit of luck, you'll find the right publisher for your book eventually – and when you do, all the rejections will be worth it.

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