Lisbeth Redfield

Lisbeth Redfield

Pen and Brush

My Manuscript Wish List

I am the editor overseeing the new publishing program at arts non-profit Pen and Brush. We launched last October and I am actively seeking submissions for future lists. We have no deadline, no reading period, and are emphatically open to queries!

We publish poetry and literary fiction (short and long) by any author who identifies as a woman. I’m looking for strong and original voices, especially from emerging or debut authors, and as long as you’re sending me good work that showcases your fine writing, I want to read it. It doesn’t matter if someone once told you it would never sell, or if your writing doesn’t look like what’s in literary magazines, or if you’ve never published anything in your life before.

Current wish list:

  • Literary fiction that defies expectations or assumptions
  • Feminist fiction
  • Work with something original to say about women’s lived experience
  • Short stories that play with genre conventions
  • Poetry on unusual topics
  • Magical realism
  • A heroine-carried novel with the heft The Name of the Wind
  • A book as elegantly spare as The Tombs of Atuan from a queer voice or perspective

My organization, Pen and Brush, is a NYC-based group devoted to promoting women’s visual art and literature as part of the organization’s mission to fight gender inequality in the publishing and fine art fields. For 122 years we have been offering a space to display work by female artists and writers in an effort to support their  and to expose the stereotypes and misconceptions that perpetuate gender-based exclusion, lack of recognition, and the devaluation of skill that is still experienced by women in the arts.

I work with guest readers drawn from the industry to select the writing we publish, and we take our motto – until it’s just about the art – very seriously. I read all our submissions (yes, even the ones with typos and the poetry that rhymes “love” and “dove” and not in a post-modern way) and I never reject anything because of a weak query letter.

Fun facts about me:

Things I used to do: ballet, amateur theater, edit academic monographs, live in Chicago, live in upstate New York (no, not Westchester; really upstate), specialize in B-list Victorian lit.

Things I still do: stress-bake, drink lots of tea, several kinds of social dance, make music, talk to my cat, get in fights debates with people about The Magicians.

Things I can’t resist: stories set on a college campus, food metaphors, ballet plots, Tam Lin references, witty banter, transmedia adaptations of 19th century novels, girl scout cookies.

Submission Guidelines

Submissions are processed online through our website ( If you run into any trouble with the site, you can always email me with questions, though please don’t send submissions directly to my email account.

We do not currently accept screenplays, memoir, or non-fiction work at this time, and we do not accept simultaneous submissions.

Guidelines & Details

Vital Info

Fiction: LGBTQ, Literary, Poetry, Short Story, Women’s Fiction

Favorite sub-genres:
I’d like the next…

My favorites include…
  • AS Byatt
  • Zadie Smith
  • Cate Marvin
  • Lesley Nneka Arimah
  • Ursula K. LeGuin
  • Tana French
  • Terry Pratchett
  • Black Swan
  • Orphan Black

My Upcoming Events: