Written by Emily Harstone May 20th, 2024

30 Mystery Publishers that Accept Direct Submissions


“Nobody reads a mystery to get to the middle. They
read it to get to the end. If it’s a letdown, they won’t
buy anymore. The first page sells that book. The last
page sells your next book.”

Mystery is one of those genres that over the years has managed to accumulate a huge number of subgenres. From cozy mysteries,  literary mysteries, and crime novels to ones focused on conspiracies, now there is a mystery subgenre for almost every reader’s taste.

Most of the following publishers focus on one or two sub-genres of mystery, although other companies are much larger multi-genre publishers that are open to mystery books, as well as books from other genres.

To learn more about any of the publishers, click on their name in order to read the full review or connect to the publisher’s website. All reviews include a link to the publisher’s website. Some of the publishers are currently closed to submissions but the majority are open.

Literary Wanderlust
Literary Wanderlust is a Denver-based independent publisher. They were founded in 2014 and they publish print and digital books. Among other genres they publish mystery, crime, and thriller books.

Tule Publishing
A romance and mystery publisher.

Aethon Books
Aethon Books is a print, eBook, and audio book publisher that focuses on Science Fiction and Fantasy. They are open to all sub-genres within these genres including Hard Sci-fi, Epic Fantasy, Space Opera, Military SF, Alt/History, and Time Travel and they recently started accepting Thrillers. This includes books for young adults, although they haven’t published many yet.

Castle Bridge Media
Castle Bridge Media is an independent publisher that focuses on genre fiction, particularly horror, science fiction, thriller, and fantasy.

Brain Jar Press 
Brain Jar Press is a Brisbane-based publisher focused on publishing science fiction, fantasy, horror, thriller and crime fiction of various lengths. They are currently closed to submissions.

Black Beacon Books
Black Beacon Books is a small press that was established in 2013. It was founded in Australia, but since then has moved to Brittany, France. They publish mysteries, suspense, horror, and post-apocalyptic fiction. They have a Patreon, and regularly publish anthologies.

Sapere Books
They are accepting submissions of crime fiction, mystery, thrillers, romantic fiction, women’s fiction, historical fiction, history, and historical biographies, as well as action and adventure books. You can generally submit unpublished manuscripts or out-of-print titles, though currently only open to republishing titles that are out of print.

Artemesia Publishing
Artemesia Publishing was founded in 2004, and they describe themselves as a micro-publisher. Although based on the titles section of their website they publish work at the rate of one title per month, which is actually a lot more than many other small presses. They started out focused on nonfiction, particularly inspirational stories, but have since expanded into other genres, including children’s fiction, YA, and  genre fiction (mystery, sci-fi, etc).

Turner Books 
Turner publishes books in a wide range of categories and formats—fiction and nonfiction. They publish mainly in print but have electronic options as well. They are a major independent publishing house that has a number of imprints. They publish everything from mystery to self-help books. They are open to submissions of any genre beyond their current acquisitions wish list (which does not contain mystery).

Kensington Press
This large independent publisher is based out of New York. They publish a wide variety of mainstream fiction and nonfiction books, with a particular focus on romance, but they also publish many other genres, including mysteries. They publish an average of 600 books a year, so they accept a lot more submissions than most independent publishers.

Brash Books
Brash Books publishes psychological thrillers, murder mysteries, international espionage, and police procedural. The publishing company is run by two best-selling mystery novelists. They publish emerging and established authors.

Legend Press
Legend Press is a UK-based independent press open to direct and agented submissions. They publish contemporary fiction and crime fiction (largely psychological and political thrillers). 

Hard Case Crime
Hard Case Crime is a well-respected and established niche publisher of hard-boiled crime novels. The publisher has been featured in a number of respected publications, including Time Magazine and The Stranger.

One More Chapter 
One More Chapter, HarperCollins UK’s award-winning digital-first publisher, is currently open to submissions. They focus on publishing commercial fiction. Because they are a digital-first publisher, even though they are based in the UK, their eBooks are accessible globally. They don’t have any mentioned geographic limitations in terms of submitting authors either, which is why we are reviewing them. They publish mystery books along with other genres.

Tell-Tale Publishing
Tell-Tale Publishing is a small press founded in 2009. They seem to focus primarily on eBooks but also they have print options (largely print on demand). They publish six imprints which include Dahlia (romance, and various romance subgenres), Stargazer (fantasy, steampunk), Nightshade (horror), Casablanca (mystery), Thistle (middle school, YA, New Adult), and Deja Vu (reprints for all genres).

Joffe Books
They publish a number of genres but their primary interests include thrillers, mysteries, and detective stories. They are a small UK-based e-publisher.

Fahrenheit Press
Fahrenheit Press is a publisher that focuses on publishing thrillers and crime novels. They are not interested in any books outside of these genres. They are a print and eBook publisher.

Camel Press
Camel Press is the genre imprint of Coffeetown Press, which in turn is owned by Epicenter Press. Camel Press publishes genre work, focusing primary on mystery, including the following sub-genres: suspense, cozy mystery, mystery thrillers, and romantic suspense. They also publish romance, both contemporary and historical, and will consider general fiction, historical fiction and westerns, particularly if the author has a strong promotional plan.

Verve Books
Verve Books is the new digital-first imprint of No Exit Press. No Exit Press is one of the top UK-based mystery publishers, and they are not open to direct submissions. Verve Books is temporarily closed to new unagented submissions.

Hera is a new female-led, independent digital publisher. They focus exclusively on publishing commercial books, including works psychological suspense, police procedurals, and thrillers, to romance, and glamorous contemporary fiction.

Crooked Lane
Crooked Lane was established in 2014 as a press specializing in crime books. They are distributed through Penguin Random House. They have an experienced staff and have managed to publish some well-known authors already. They publish a range of mysteries that lean towards the cozy, and they are not opposed to publishing a series of books. You can see their catalog here.

Bold Strokes Books
Bold Strokes publishes books that fall under the LGBTQ umbrella including literary fiction, romance novels, young adult novels, genre novels (including crime/suspense, mystery, intrigue/thriller), and works of nonfiction. The only genre of books they do not appear to publish is poetry.

Page Street Publishing
They have good distribution and are open to mystery books in the young adult genre.

Carina Press
Carina Press is Harlequin’s digital-first adult fiction imprint, publishing first in digital, and then depending on the numbers, releasing audio and print versions as well. Unlike most of Harlequin’s imprints they don’t just focus on romance, although they are open to all sub-genres of romance, including contemporary, paranormal, LGBTQ+, and science fiction. They also publish mysteries of all flavors—from cozies to thrillers, with and without romantic elements. 

Blind Eye Books
Blind Eye Books publishes science fiction, fantasy, mystery, and romance novels featuring LGBTQ protagonists. They are a print publisher and their book covers are beautifully designed and really stand out. The books they have published have won and been nominated for a number of awards, including the Lambda.

Brother Mockingbird Publishing
Brother Mockingbird Publishing is a small independent press committed to discovering writers from the American South, but they are also open to good fiction, regardless of where the author is based. They publish a wide range of genres including mysteries.

Bella Books
Bella Books is a press focused on publishing stories about lesbian, queer, bisexual, and gender non-conforming community and they are interested in acquiring manuscripts that involve these stories across all genres, including romance, mystery, thriller, paranormal, etc.

CamCat Books
CamCat Books is a small independent publisher that was founded in 2019.  They publish a wide range of genres, including mysteries and thrillers.

Severn River Publishing 
According to their website Severn River Publishing “was founded by military veterans and family members who shared a love of story.” They were founded in 2018, and focus on publishing thrillers and mysteries, but are also open to submissions of historical fiction. They will reopen to submissions the fall of 2024. They are currently open to work for their hybrid model, which we do not recommend or list. If they ever redirect submitted work from the traditional publishing imprint, to the hybrid one, please reach out to support@authorspublish.com.

TWB Press
TWB Press’s tagline is “Electronic Publishing for the 21st century.” They have an additional tag line on their main page that says “TWB Press publishes stories of human conflict and redemption through a variety of world views that reflect humanity at its best…and at its worst. ” They publish thrillers among other genres and do not allow for simultaneous submissions.

Emily Harstone is the author of many popular books, including The Authors Publish Guide to Manuscript SubmissionsSubmit, Publish, Repeat, and The 2024 Guide to Manuscript Publishers. She regularly teaches three acclaimed courses on writing and publishing at The Writer’s Workshop at Authors Publish. You can follow her on Facebook here.



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