I am a Scottish author, and I heard that a Scottish crime writer got his first break with an American publisher. So, I was wondering -- while I am busy seeking representation for my second novel -- if any of you know of publishers in the USA with an open submission policy? I have a Writer's and Artist's Yearbook, but it's a couple of years old. Plus I know that fewer and fewer publishers accept unagented work these days.
My first novel has already been published - by a small press in the UK. Agents were not interested in the first one, mainly for that reason. Ironically, had it sold in very high numbers, they might have been interested.
Five Star accepts unagented work, and do some good stuff--they get plenty of reviews and have been getting more award nominations. The downside is that the money is low and the distribution is a little odd--they only market to libraries.
I published one book with Five Star, and would be glad to share more details if you're interested.
But like Jude, I have to wonder why you don't want to just wait until you get an agent for your second book and let the agent handle the first one, too.
The "Novel & Short Story Writer's Market" is a great place to start. I found most of my USA submissions that way. It has a symbol system that makes it easy to browse for what the publisher accepts. I give it a thumbs up.
I think there's a UK version of "Writer's Market 2010." It might be new to the market, but I believe it has USA listings in it. That might be worth a look, too.
Anyway, if it says F&W Media as the publisher, I've found it's a solid source. F&W puts out "Writer's Digest" magazine and "Writer's Market" book series.