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Contact Us

Hazelden Publishing
15251 Pleasant Valley Road
P.O. Box 176
Center City, MN 55012-0176
Business hours:
8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
 (Central Time)
Monday - Friday

651-213-4793 fax
email us


Proposals, Manuscript Submissions, and Guidelines

Hazelden Publishing creates products for the prevention, treatment, criminal justice, behavioral healthcare, and consumer markets. If you have a proposal or manuscript that you would like Hazelden to consider for publication, these author guidelines will help you get started.

About the Proposal Process

  • Read the guidelines and FAQs listed below.
  • Literary agents or representatives should send inquiries to editorial@hazeldenbettyford.org
  • Prospective authors working directly, without an agent, must send proposals hard copy, via mail, to the address listed at the end of the FAQs.

Due to the quantity of manuscripts and proposals we receive each year, Hazelden Publishing is unfortunately unable to reply to every submission, query, and request for feedback we receive. While we are unable to confirm each proposal, we do review every manuscript our team receives as a hard-copy submission (we are UNABLE to review proposals submitted digitally or via email).

Guidelines for Submitting a Proposal

Before submitting, we encourage you to first familiarize yourself with our products, and to do some research on how to write a non-fiction book proposal. There are a number of resources available online and in print on book proposals that can help prospective authors with the task of writing a non-fiction proposal. For a complete listing of what we publish, visit our online bookstore or browse our online catalogs.

For consideration, a complete proposal should include two main items: a cover letter with a product summary; and a detailed chapter outline along with three sample chapters.

Your cover letter should contain the following information:

  • Overview: What is the general content and objective of your work? What do you intend to accomplish?
  • Audience: Who or what professional is most likely to purchase your work?
  • Market: Why is your intended proposal needed in its market?
  • Competition: What competing publications are currently on the market? How is your work different from them?
  • Author information: Provide information on yourself and your qualifications, including previous writing or relevant experience, and previously published works.

All submissions must be submitted as hard-copy proposals, typed and double-spaced. Photocopies are acceptable.  Mail a printed copy of your proposal to the address below. We do not accept emailed submissions or manuscripts stored on digital devices. We cannot guarantee the return of any materials sent in for consideration, so please do not send in originals that you need returned.

About Hazelden Publishing

Hazelden publishes engaging content that helps build recovery in the lives of individuals, families, and communities affected by alcoholism, drug dependency and related disorders. In addition, its publications and services are intended to meet a full range of needs for professionals -- counselors, educators, doctors, clinicians, researchers, clergy, and others -- who work with individuals with substance use and mental health disorders. Hazelden publications support Twelve Step philosophy and other evidence-based therapies that offer a biopsychosocial approach to address the needs of the mind, body, and spirit.

What We Publish

Hazelden publishes content in multiple formats: print (books, pamphlets, workbooks, and curricula), multi-media (video, audio, CD-ROM, Web), e-publishing, in person or online training, and webinars. Our publications are sold to bookstores, treatment and mental health programs, hospitals, schools, churches, correctional facilities, government and military agencies, counseling agencies, and online.

Hazelden editors look for innovative material for professionals that addresses issues relevant to substance abuse prevention, treatment, continuing care, and recovery, as well as mental health and related clinical and educational issues. We publish in multi-media formats for both professionals and their clients that reflect state-of-the-art instructional design, appropriate reading levels, engaging graphics and formatting, and gender and cultural inclusivity. Our books for consumers address topics related to recovery from substance dependence and other addictions, family and relationship issues, spirituality, mental health, and Twelve Step programs.

What We Don't Publish

Hazelden discourages submissions of poetry, fiction, personal stories, memoirs, dissertations, children's books, and art. We also discourage proposals for music and video.

Special Projects

Hazelden Publishing seeks submissions for special projects at times and is currently accepting submission for crowd-sourced meditation anthologies for our popular Hazelden Meditations Series. Instead of relying on the expertise of a single author, Hazelden Publishing is asking the public, including service members and veterans in recovery from addiction and sexual trauma survivors, to help write upcoming volumes in its bestselling series of self-help meditation books. For more information, or to contribute, visit hazelden.org/writeyourown.

Proposal Evaluation

Once received, your proposal will be screened and forwarded to an editor for review.  The review process may take several months, during which time an editor will evaluate your proposal based on editorial, marketing, and philosophical criteria. The purpose of such evaluation is to determine whether your proposal fits with our editorial mission, market niche, and product plans.

We are dedicated to ensuring that every proposal is reviewed; to maintain that commitment, due to the number of submissions we receive each year, we cannot confirm receipt of each proposal, offer individual feedback, or put prospective authors in touch with agents. Our editorial staff can only follow up on proposals we are interested in publishing.


  • My material is already self-published, or published by another publishing house. Do you distribute already published material?
    • While we do distribute a small number of externally produced products, we are not actively reviewing and acquiring already published material at this time. This may change again in the future, but at this time, we are not picking up products for distribution.
  • Have you ever published an unsolicited manuscript?
    • Yes, some of our most successful books started out as unsolicited proposals.
  • Will anyone read the proposal I send in?
    • We receive thousands of proposals each year, and each one of them is reviewed because we truly appreciate the unique connection we have to our audience, and the work each individual puts into a proposal.
  • I sent my proposal in weeks ago, but I haven't heard from anyone. What should I do?
    • Due to the volume of manuscripts we receive, we are unable to verify receipt of unsolicited submissions. If you would like to verify receipt, we encourage you to send your package with return receipt through your mailing agency.
  • How long will it take for an answer?
    • It can take many months to assess the proposals we receive. As a small publisher, we regret that we are only able to reach out to prospective authors when editors have determined that their proposal suits our publishing plan and market needs. If one of our editors is interested in your proposal, they will be in touch with you in the weeks or months after your submission.
  • What happens if you accept my proposal?
    • When manuscripts are accepted for publication, authors are generally offered a royalty contract, according to the type of work and the market it serves. All manuscripts are subject to editing, and most products are in development for two years before publication.
  • Do I need an agent?
    • Having a literary agent represent your work is not necessary; however, our editors work with a wide network of agents.
  • I haven't heard from anyone about my proposal. I assume that means it wasn't accepted. Can I get feedback on why and how to make it different?
    • We'd love to be able to give feedback on all the proposals we receive, but unfortunately, due to the volume of proposals we receive, we are unable to be in touch on every manuscript.
  • When I sent in my proposal, I mailed in several originals I need back. How would do I go about getting them returned to me?
    • Unfortunately, we cannot be responsible for items sent to us as part of an unsolicited proposal. We are unable to guarantee the return of items sent in with proposals, and encourage prospective authors to make copies of anything that's submitted as part of a proposal package.
  • I write articles and blogs in the health space, will Hazelden Publishing look at them?
    • At this time, we do not publish externally produced articles and blogs.
  • My proposal is ready. Where do I send it?

Send your proposal to:

Hazelden Publishing
Editorial Department  RW 15
P.O. Box 176
Center City, MN 55012-0176

Thank you for your attention to these author guidelines.