On finding our voice as a publisher


“If you want ___, make it/do it yourself…”

I’ve heard that statement about everything from video games to art to books and stories. It’s a typical response almost any time I’ve brought up the fact that I’d like to see more people who look like me in the spaces that I frequent. And while I’m not going to get into everything involved with unpacking that statement in and of itself, I can say that I am particularly motivated to see more stories and art created by and centering on people of color.

To that end, we’ll be making some changes with our anthology and general submissions going forward.

We’ll be making a particular effort to find and foster creators who are POC.

That means outreach through Facebook groups, forums, social media, business partnerships and anything else we can think of as a group. If you know someone who would be a great fit, please refer them and have them get in touch. And if there are other sites that would like to partner with us, we’d love to hear from you, too! Sanguine Press is my “baby” but I want to share it with as many like-minded people as possible.

Some of our anthologies will be for POC creators only.

The goal right now is to have a bi-annual anthology that will eventually become quarterly — Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter — each with a different theme. Much like Transitions and Awakenings, these anthologies will have the requirement of a predominantly POC cast. Unlike the current anthology, however, we will only be accepting submissions from authors and artists who are POC themselves for some of our anthologies.

The reasoning behind this is simple — as people of color, we should have control of our own narratives and stories, rather than having ourselves seen through someone else’s lens.

For our subscription-based online content (more on that to come) we’ll still be open to all creators.

Some of our contests will be for POC creators only.

Again, this is about uplifting the community and providing resources and opportunities that might not be there otherwise.  We haven’t worked out all the details here yet, but what we’re looking at doing is having more giveaways/contests with not just Kindles but software like Scrivener and subscriptions to various services that are useful for creators of all kinds. Some (but not all) of these will be for POC creators only.

The content we will offer both now and in the future will be centered around the perspectives of POC.

This means all short stories, all novels (long-term goal), all art (more on that soon) and all multimedia (short-term goal) will be specifically and explicitly focused on POC. This isn’t a colorblind space. This is a space meant to celebrate our experiences, fantasies, and stories. To that end…

This space is a safe space for every ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, and so forth.

We are not trying to find or foster a singular narrative. People of color come from all walks of life and have wide and varied experiences that deserve to be seen and celebrated. As a creator, you need never worry about conforming to a particular ideal or ideology to submit to Sanguine Press. And you need never worry about being judged harshly for your lived and creative experiences — that includes any comments in our groups (soon to be open) our forums (also soon to be open) or anywhere else we establish ourselves as a publisher.

Our goal is to uplift, support, and nurture the very kinds of creative media that we want to see, now and in the future.

I know I’m not the only one who loved reading sci-fi, fantasy and horror stories growing up. I also know that I’m not the only person who wanted to see more main characters that had a life or background that mirrored my own. Now’s our chance to build that world we wanted to see. Together. We’re not the only publishing house doing this, but we are definitely aiming to be one of the best.

I hope you are all as excited about being a part of this journey as I am. Feel free to drop (respectful) questions into the comments section below. More to come!