O'Brien Press Manuscript Submissions


Thank you for considering The O'Brien Press for your manuscript. We have been working with talented authors and illustrators for more than forty-five years and know that great books come from all kinds of experiences, so we enjoy hearing from as wide a range of aspiring authors as possible. We are particularly keen to discover writers who represent an increasingly diverse and modern Ireland – writers from different racial, ethnic, cultural and socio-economic backgrounds, writers who identify as LGBTQ+, writers with disabilities, etc.

As an Irish publisher, we have found it increasingly important to have authors who are available to attend local events in bookshops, schools and libraries. As such, while we are open to submissions from authors all over the world, we are much more likely to publish authors based in Ireland.


How to Submit

If you would like to submit your work to us, please email the following to submissions@obrien.ie:

  • A cover letter
  • A synopsis
  • A completed submissions form
  • The first three chapters of your manuscript


You can download our submissions form below. For children’s picture books or other submissions under 1,000 words, please submit the work in its entirety.



We accept electronic submissions in the form of Word docs or PDF attachments. Any other forms (including Google Drive/Doc links, zip files, WeTransfer files, etc) will not be read. Submissions sent to us without a completed submissions form will also not be read.

In order to reduce paper waste in the interests of the environment, we would prefer to receive submissions electronically. However, we will also accept postal submissions as an alternative option. If you are posting your work to us, please follow the above guidelines and send your work to:

Submissions Department
The O'Brien Press
12 Terenure Road East
Dublin D06 HD27 Ireland.

What We Publish & What We Don’t

We publish mainly children's fiction and non-fiction, adult non-fiction and a select number of adult novels. We generally do not publish poetry or academic works. If in doubt, take a look at our website and the books currently available for sale; this is a good indicator of whether or not your submission will suit our list.

Please don’t try to pitch us over the phone. We don’t like to make a decision without considering a writing sample, so any phone call will ultimately end in the phrase ‘Send it to us!’

What We’re Excited About

Adult Non-Fiction: Humour, sport, photography, Irish history and other Irish-interest titles.

Children’s Non-Fiction: We’re open to almost any topic or theme – although we do ask that it has some particular relevance for Irish children.

Children’s Fiction: We’re looking for great stories across all age groups, from picture books to Young Adult Fiction. There are no limits here and we’re always hoping for our next great children’s book to emerge from the submissions process. We especially enjoy historical fiction (you can see the periods covered by our children’s fiction here: obrien.ie/childrens/history-through-fiction), contemporary stories, humour, fantasy, mysteries and adventure. We’d also like, as much as is possible, to see a diverse range of characters appear in these stories – in terms of background, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, physical abilities, etc.

A note on picture books: If you’re submitting a picture book text, it is not necessary for you to commission an illustrator to provide illustrations. However, it is helpful for us to know if you plan to illustrate the story yourself.

This list is not exhaustive. It is simply a rough guide to what we get most excited about when reviewing submissions. If in doubt, send it anyway!

Please Note

Firstly, and most importantly, please allow a minimum of 8-10 weeks’ response time. We receive a lot of submissions – on average over 100 per month. Due to this high number of unsolicited manuscripts requiring review by our editorial team, sometimes this process can take longer.

Secondly, due to time constraints, The O'Brien Press is not in a position to offer critiques of any unsolicited manuscripts we receive.

Finally, please do not forget to put your contact information on your submission. Any submission received without contact information will not be read.