Submit a Proposal
 Manuscript Guidelines




Manuscript Guidelines

RMB accepts unsolicited proposals and manuscripts. However, in order to make everyone’s lives somewhat easier, we have developed guidelines that should answer most of your questions in terms of submitting one or the other. If all else fails, please refer to The Chicago Manual of Style--16th Edition, which serves as RMB’s in-house style guide and resource for almost everything we do.

Before submitting your manuscript, please be certain to check-out RMB’s Submit a Proposal page. This will give you insight into what we are looking for and what we are interested in pursuing. More importantly, please take some time to familiarize yourself with RMB’s current selection of books and ensure that our publishing company is the right one for you and your project. Stalk us on Facebook (RMB | Rocky Mountain Books and RMB | Green) and check out our Twitter feed, too. Visit your local bookseller, library or online retailer to check out our books in terms of how they look, what we publish and who we work with. Google us. Bing us. Do whatever you need to do to figure out who you are getting into bed with.

Please note that RMB no longer accepts hard-copy proposals or manuscripts. All material submitted for consideration must be delivered via email, FTP or on a CD, DVD or memory stick. Hard-copy submissions may not be evaluated or returned.

Please note that responses to submissions may take up to a minimum of six months to evaluate.

You may submit your proposal to:

Don Gorman
Publisher, RMB | Rocky Mountain Books

Manuscript Guidelines


The manuscript comprises the elements listed below, though not every item will be needed for every book. Submitted manuscripts must be free of spelling mistakes, errors of grammar, up to date (including all URLs or other online citations) and appear together in a single Microsoft Word document:

  • Title page
  • Dedication
  • Epigraph
  • Table of contents
  • List of illustrations
  • List of abbreviations
  • List of illustrative material (illustrations, photos, maps, tables, charts, drawings, etc)
  • Foreword
  • Preface
  • Acknowledgements
  • Introduction
  • Main text
  • Appendices
  • Endnotes
  • Glossary
  • Bibliography or works cited
  • Captions and credit / permission lines for all submitted illustrative material
  • List of items to appear in the Index (proper names, place names, etc)

All illustrative material (illustrations, photos, maps, tables, charts, drawings, etc) must be submitted separately as electronic files on a CD, DVD or memory stick. All artwork files should be identified using file names that clearly describe the image. Please do not embed your illustrative material in the manuscript to indicate placement. Image file names should be used to identify approximate placement of the illustrative material within the main text (e.g. <insert greengrass.tiff>). However, please note that while every effort will be made to place illustrative material as close to the exact location as indicated in the text, this is only occasionally possible due to variances in layout, design and available space on the physical page.

Captions (the descriptive information featured outside an illustration) may include the title for the image, description of the image, illustration number, location of the image on the page, image dimensions, etc.) for all illustrative material should be submitted with the complete manuscript. Please note that “Captions” are distinct and more comprehensive that a basic "List of Illustrations".

Manuscript Package

The manuscript package contains the manuscript (as per above) and all other elements that may be necessary for us to publish your book, including:

  • Permission forms for the reproduction of all illustrative material or previously published material or personal communications included in the manuscript
  • Stylesheet for use in copy-editing and proofreading, with proper spellings of technical words and terms, unusual-looking acronyms, uncommon units of measure etc
  • 250 word "About the Book"
  • 150 word "About the Author"
  • Recent author photo (digital)
Manuscript Dos and Don'ts
  • have your manuscript package professionally copy edited or proofread before submitting to RMB.
  • submit your manuscript package on time and complete. Late or incomplete manuscripts will result in publication delays or cancellation of your project.
  • consult The Chicago Manual of Style--16th Edition for answers to all of your questions regarding issues of style, grammar, punctuation, technology, fair use, citations, professional practice and the production process.
  • consult The Oxford Canadian Dictionary for spelling and usage issues.
  • submit illustrative material as digital files wherever possible. Hardcopy images in need of professional scanning should be discussed with the Publisher or Art Director prior to submission.
  • place all your images in one folder on the CD or DVD that contains your manuscript package.
  • give each image a unique file name.
  • for books that will be illustrated throughout (as opposed to simply having illustrated sections), please use the specific image file name when inserting "callouts" in your Word document to tell us where the approximate placement of images throughout the text is to occur. Bracket the instruction in chevrons and put it on a separate line, like so: <insert greengrass.tiff somewhere in this chapter>, <insert greengrass.tiff as close to this paragraph as possible>, etc.
  • submit maps, logos, line-drawings and any vector artwork as .eps or .ai files. Contact us if you would like to use some other format.
  • submit photos, paintings, scans and any raster images in .tiff or .psd format. Contact us if you would like to use some other format. These images must be 300 ppi or greater at the dimensions you want them to print.
  • If terms like "300ppi" and "vector" seem scary and you're unsure if your images will meet our criteria, relax. We can check your images and let you know if they're suitable for publication. In this case, collect all your images in their original file formats, burn them to a single CD or DVD and send the disc to us. But please do this way before your manuscript is due. If we need to reject some or (eek) all of your images, it could change the scope of your project and we need to know this ASAP.
  • check out our publishing FAQs section if you have questions.

Do not

  • be late with your manuscript submission. Any delay in the submission process will cause your project to either be cancelled or postponed. All delays -- major or minor -- create a domino effect in the production process and negatively impact all departments, personnel, schedules and projects.
  • submit an unedited, incomplete or partial manuscript. Such manuscripts will be immediately rejected and may cause your project to be either cancelled or postponed.
  • submit a manuscript that has each section or chapter saved as a separate file. The manuscript text should be saved and submitted as one complete Microsoft Word Document.
  • embed images in your Microsoft Word document.
  • resave jpegs multiple times. It is best to send us the original files.
  • submit low resolution images copied from the Internet.
  • "res-up" your images in Photoshop or any other software.
  • colour-correct your images unless you know how to do this.

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We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund and the Canada Council for the Arts, 
and of the province of British Columbia through the British Columbia Arts Council and the Book Publishing Tax Credit.