Manuscript Submissions

Thank you for your interest in writing for Nolo. We welcome proposals by outside authors. The information here should help you determine whether your book idea might be a good fit with our publishing program.

What Nolo Publishes

Nolo publishes legal do-it-yourself books for consumers, small businesses, and nonprofit organizations. We specialize in helping people handle their own legal tasks -- for example, write a will, file a small claims court lawsuit, start a small business or nonprofit, or apply for a patent. We also offer plain-English guidance on practical and financial tasks such as buying a house, writing a business plan, or preventing identity theft.

If you are not familiar with Nolo titles, browse our offerings online at You'll find a brief description of each book, a table of contents, sample chapter and/or a list of forms. You can also check out Nolo publications in your local bookstore or library.

Nolo does not publish fiction, first-person accounts, biographies or any other material that strays too far from our step-by-step approach.

To submit a book proposal to Nolo, please include the following:

  • cover letter describing the book and explaining how it fits into Nolo's publishing program
  • chapter-by-chapter outline of the entire book
  • description of the market you envision and why people would buy this book
  • list of competing titles (author, title and publisher) and why your book would be better or different
  • summary of your qualifications to write this book, and
  • sample chapter (other than an introduction, at least ten pages) or other material that demonstrates your writing skills and subject expertise.

If you're not ready to submit a full book proposal, but would like brief feedback on a book idea, please send a brief query letter describing your idea and qualifications.

Where to Send Your Proposal

Please ship your proposal to:

New Book Submissions
950 Parker Street
Berkeley, CA 94710

We cannot accept proposals sent by email (sorry, we got too much spam). If you want to verify that we receive your submission, please use a shipping method that is traceable.

If you want your proposal returned, please include a self-addressed envelope with sufficient postage for return of all of your material. If you do not want your proposal returned, but would like a response, please include a self-addressed stamped envelope with first-class postage.

We will review your proposal or query letter and let you know of our decision as soon as possible, but it may take a month.

Please, no phone calls.