There are so many amazing stories out there, and every time we open ourselves to submissions, we become inundated with them, and it’s become evident that we need help! Please read below to see if this is something that might interest you, and please share this call with your network!
What will I be reading?
Renaissance is interested in stories that live in liminal spaces; between genres, between identities, between states. We love to publish stories of joy, triumph, hope, and optimism; but the optimism which takes work and commitment, the joys which come from radical hope and love. These are the stories we hope to receive, and we hope those will be the ones you will read.
What is the time commitment?
You get to choose your level of commitment, whether that is a manuscript once every few years, or one a month, you are only obligated to read and evaluate the manuscripts you’ve committed to, at the frequency of your choice.
How will I rate the books?
We have a comprehensive form for you to fill out which will guide you through the process of commenting by asking you questions about the plot, characters, style, and our specific editorial concerns. We strongly encourage you to read the questions before you read the manuscript so that you are familiar with what you are looking for, and we will send you those questions on a word document along with the manuscript, and most of the questions are answered on a scale of one to ten, with requests for you to comment on why you chose that number (the final submission for your comments is done via Google Forms.)
Who makes the final decision?
We take your comments under serious advisement! However, you do not bear the burden of the final decision. We make sure that a minimum of three readers read each submission; after that, we look at the results of your evaluation, and based on these cumulative results, we determine whether or not the final acquisitions committee will read the manuscript. When the committee does, they will come to a final decision on the manuscript; your role in the selection process is to filter what ends up on their plate.
What’s in it for me?
Even though this reading work is done on a volunteer basis, this still counts as work experience, which allows us to act as professional references for you in future employment endeavours!
Renaissance is a member of the Association of English Language Publishers of Quebec, the Association of Canadian Pubilshers, and the Literary Press Group of Canada. One of our co-founders, Nathan, also sits on the board of directors of LitDistCo. We get all their newsletters, and we keep very informed of what is going on at other independent presses, which means we can easily pass on job opportunities and other industry news to you, as well as invite you to meetings you might be interested to sit in on, which often provide trainings and/or insights in the current Canadian publishing landscape.
Fun books to read
We have received SO MANY amazing stories every time we have opened for submissions in the past, it was sometimes physically painful to say no to some of them. One of (in our opinion) the best perks of reading our incoming manuscripts.
Please apply now if you are interested, and share widely with your network!
Terms and Conditions
Authors who submit to us trust us with their precious book babies, and we owe it to them to exercise the utmost discretion with it. Be respectful of their creative labour and do not disclose anything you read about the manuscript outside of filling the forms and speaking to Renaissance staff, whether positive or negative; authors deserve to know their ideas, characters, and worlds are safe with us.
Authors may not read
If you have published a book with Renaissance, please know you cannot be a reader for us until 36 months have passed since original publication date.
Readers may not submit manuscripts for consideration
If you choose to be a reader for Renaissance, please know that you cannot also submit a manuscript for our consideration. You must wait at least 24 months after your resignation as a reader for us before you may submit a manuscript for consideration.
Other conflicts of interest
Readers may not read for Renaissance the same calendar year as a member of your immediate family, such as a spouse, sibling, parent, or child, submits a work for publication.
You may not be a reader for a work of which you are friends, ex-friends, ex-partners, or family with the author (this includes cousins, niblings, in-laws, grandparents, etc.), or where the author is any other person you have an existing relationship with (neighbour, co-worker, dog-sitter, cat’s ex-lover’s sister-in-law, etc.) This is true whether the feelings you have towards this person are positive, negative, or anywhere in between.
Readers may not evaluate a work they are also evaluating for another publishing company.
Please make use of judgement when evaluating whether a conflict of interest exists. Readers are required to disclose any conflict of interest immediately as they arise.