How to Sell an Anthology

When you decide to sell an anthology, regardless whether the content is fiction, non-fiction or poetry, there are certain guidelines you can follow to ensure the success of your publication. Determining a theme and publishing method will set the stage for the other decisions you will be required to make along the way. The details provided below will guide you as you begin the journey from idea to published anthology.


  1. Image titled Sell an Anthology Step 1
    Determine the focus for your anthology. An anthology of works, whether fiction, non-fiction, poetry, plays or anything else, is a collection of works that are bound together by a specific theme. Some examples include an anthology of personal essays about childhood lessons, poetry collections and genre fiction collections, such as the Norton Anthology.
  2. Image titled Sell an Anthology Step 2
    Decide how you will publish your anthology. You can submit it to a publishing house either independently or through a literary agent. You can obtain funding from literary associations in order to print and market your anthology yourself. Print on demand (POD) publishers such as Lulu and Create Space are available (some services charge fees), and you can also publish your anthology as an e-Book for use with e-Readers such as Amazon's Kindle, Barnes & Noble's Nook and Sony's E-Reader.
  3. Image titled Sell an Anthology Step 3
    Research pricing for your chosen publication option. This will help you determine how large the book should be (length and width), how many pages, what type of pages, whether or not you choose to print in color, black and white or a combination and whether your book will be hardcover or paperback. All of these elements influence the price of each book, which in turn influences the royalties you will receive from each sale.
  4. Image titled Sell an Anthology Step 4
    Encourage authors and writers to send submissions. You can use social networking, Craigslist, blogs and even a free website (or purchased domain) to publicize your submission guidelines. Include information such as how you would prefer submissions be sent, whether or not you allow simultaneous or multiple submissions, the rights you intend to purchase, rate per word or accepted submission, publication date and any regulations you wish to impose on each submission (for example, word count).
  5. Image titled Sell an Anthology Step 5
    Select the submissions you will publish in your anthology. This requires a great deal of time spent reading. Choose those submissions which best contribute to the overall theme.
  6. Image titled Sell an Anthology Step 6
    Edit the submissions you intend to publish.
    • Proofread each submission. Check for spelling errors, grammatical mistakes and sentence structure.
    • Edit for content of each submission. Check for continuity of the story, facts and characters. Analyze the organization of the writing. If the piece is fiction, is the plot clear and easy to follow? If it's a non-fiction work, does the article or essay follow a logical progression? For poems, does the line structure work? Would stanzas be stronger if there were different line breaks? All of these sorts of questions should be considered during an editorial review.
  7. Image titled Sell an Anthology Step 7
    Choose the order in which the submissions will appear. Do you want to group all of the poems together, and keep the fiction separate? Should the essays be printed in alphabetical order or chronologically? How you present the information you publish in an anthology is just as important as the information itself.


  • If you're swamped with submissions, you can speed up the reading process by inviting editorial assistants to pre-screen submissions.
  • When writing out your submission guidelines, separate them for each type of submission (e.g. artwork, poetry, fiction and non-fiction) if applicable.
  • Developing a theme before requesting submissions not only helps submitting authors, but will help you and any other editors you select to choose the pieces which fit best together.
  • If you are working with a publishing house and/or agent, you can look to the professionals in these businesses for guidance in deciding the particulars about how your book will be made and how it will be priced.

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Categories: Books