This Monday I’m sharing my interview with Ralph Gallagher, Editor, Featherweight Press who will talk about what Featherweight Press publishes and his Helping Hands project. We’d love to hear from you. Send any questions our way and we’ll pass along to Ralph or check out Featherweight Press.
Featherweight Press publishes quality Young Adult and Children’s manuscripts. We have a tendency to take the “riskier” subjects that most mainstream YA presses won’t take. We’re open to LGBT stories and stories dealing with real issues that teens face. We have stories about cross-dressing teens, teens who commit suicide, teens who’ve been abused, and teens who cut themselves. If it’s a good story, we’ll consider it.
We are a print and e-book publisher. Our books are available worldwide. The number of books we publish each year varies based on the number of submissions we have and how long they take to edit. For 2012 we have currently have fifteen books planned for release and that number is expect
We’re attracting teen readers by putting out stories teens want to read. We’re not sticking to the usual plot arcs that major publishers love. There is more to the YA genre than love triangles and we want to show that. We have stories that kids can relate to. Whether you’re a gay teen who wants to read about other gay teens saving the world, or a teen that cuts and wants to read about how other teens deal with it, we have something for everyone.
What is the helping hands project?
The Helping Hands project is my baby at Featherweight Press. They’re stories that focus on LGBT character and their issues. Some of the stories focus on the character’s sexuality or gender identity as the plot point, while others the characters just happen to be LGBT. All stories published under the Helping Hands line have their author and editor royalties donated to a charity that helps LGBT youth that the author chooses.
I work mostly on Featherweight Press’s young adult books. Since I’m still young myself, I’m able to read through manuscripts and look at them from a young person’s perspective. I’m good at seeing if dialog or actions are something a real teenager would do. And if there’s something I’m unsure of, I have plenty of teens that I can contact and ask if it’s something they’d do. I work across all genres and have worked on everything from fantasy to romance to mystery novels.
I’m also the one responsible for the Helping Hands line. It was my idea after seeing a blog post by an author and I stepped up to take on the work. It has been a way for me to give back to the LGBT community as well as learn more about it in the process.
How best would a writer submit to Featherweight Press?Featherweight Press’s submission guidelines can be found at
We accept submissions all year long from authors of any age. If you have a manuscript you think we’d like, feel free to send it in to us! All submissions get read. If your manuscript doesn’t fit with us, you’ll still receive a letter from our senior editor detailing the reasons and offering you advice on what we recommend working on.
How would a writer go about submitting to the Helping Hands line?Helping Hands submissions are also accepted all year longer. Stories can be any length and the only requirement is that they focus on an LGBT character or issue. We’ll consider both Young Adult and Children’s stories. Genre is wide open; we’ll gladly accept any fantasy, sci-fi, etc. so long as there is the focus on an LGBT character or issue. And the character’s sexuality or gender identity doesn’t need to be the focus. If the story is about a gay/bisexual/trans* boy saving the world from man eating plants we’d be glad to consider it. (We do seem to have a distinct lack of lesbian stories, however. Wink wink.)
Submissions can be sent to the general submissions email listed at http://featherweightpublishing.com/submissions.php
just make sure to mention it’s a Helping Hands submission.