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This is the official blog for Elm Books, an independent publisher based in Laramie, Wyoming. We publish romance, disability literature, children's books, and more! Paperbacks and E-books are available for sale at our Website. We're also on Facebook and Instagram!

Monday, February 3, 2020

Elm Books is Reimagining Steampunk!

If you thought steampunk was just glued-on gears and fake posh British accents, you will never be so happy to be proven wrong! Sure, the 19th century was a time of exciting scientific developments, but it was also an era of great social inequality and ruthless colonial expansion. With Death in the Age of Steam, Elm Books authors are reimagining steampunk through the colonized, marginalized, and otherwise ignored voices of the time period.

Editor Jess Faraday writes, “My interest in steampunk writing arose from an argument with another writer, who said that no story could be truly steampunk unless the character were rich, white, able-bodies, Protestant, heterosexual, and male, as in the 19th century, these were the only people who ‘had agency.’ Gross historical inaccuracy and breathtakingly offensive generalizations aside, what I most took issue with was his idea that only the people on the top rungs of society have stories to tell. This is not the case, of course. We all have stories to tell.”

Death in the Age of Steam, the latest release from Elm Books, is a continuation of our “Death” mystery series. Each short story is packed with suspense and intrigue with a steampunk twist. A lady sharpshooter solves an impossible murder in the Old, Weird West, in "A Frame Most Fearful" by Emily Baird. In "The Megalodon" by Jack Bates, unlikely heroes foil the attempted sabotage of a magnificent new submersible. In far-off Jerusalem, a determined Rabbi uses logic and Kabbalah to solve a spate of mysterious murders in "Beneath the Holy City" by Edward Stasheff. "Mrs. MacAdams’s Establishments" by Yvette Franklin has a woman respectable by day and dominating by night who investigates a murder with the help of a Lovelace analytical engine. In "Blood in Peking" by JL Boekstein, you’ll find political intrigue, romantic misunderstandings, and vampires! In "Honor, Love and Photographs" by Christalea McMullin, ancient East Asian rivalries spring to life on the streets of East London. And in "Borderman H49" by Darren Todd, a peacekeeper uncovers a twisted plot to cause havoc between competing solar farms and steal the power of the sun.

Strap on your goggles, get your gears spinning, and join your favorite Elm Books mystery authors for the previously untold stories of steampunk and the weird west!

Death in the Age of Steam is available in print or e-book format on Amazon and our website.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Volume 3: 1 June 12, 2016
Edited by Leila Monaghan

Last year, Elm Book produced one great new collection, Death and a Cup of Tea, and a beautiful second edition of Christmas is for Bad Girls, now available in paperback as well as e-format. Lots of news to share and looking forward to a great year ahead!
Leila Monaghan

Indiegogo Campaign

Introducing our first Indiegogo Campaign!  Only four days left so please help.  We are raising funds so that we can change the payment structure of Elm Books for our next cozy mystery collection, Death by Cupcake. We want to be able to give authors a lump sum of $100 rather than royalty payments.  Any and all contributions welcome.  Or just stop by to see the great video Jess Faraday put together for the campaign:

Publicity Happenings


Our PR representative, @LilyCallahan, is now regularly tweeting for @ElmBooks. If you are on Twitter, please follow both accounts and pass on the news!  

Email List

Please let me know at Leila.ElmBooks at if you would like to receive occasional e-mails from us with all the latest news.

Call for stories: Science Fiction

We now have a new Science Fiction editor, Leonie Skye.  Welcome Leonie!  Her first collection features heroic protagonists with disabilities.  Drop her a note if you are interested.

Elm Books is looking for short story submissions for our first Science Fiction & Fantasy collection (DEADLINE EXTENDED until 8/31/2016). We hope this will be the first of an ongoing series. We are interested in short stories (no more than 15,000 words) featuring heroic PROTAGONISTS WITH DISABILITIES (broadly defined) and that fall within ANY SCIENCE FICTION SUB GENRE. Stories may be soft or hard science fiction. We are particularly interested in anthropological, feminist, and speculative work that will keep us turning pages in the wee hours.  Please E-mail leoskye.elmbooks at  with your submission questions.

Reviews Death and a Cup of Tea

An interesting combination of very short mysteries. Some involve murder, some are just intriguing, one is set in the past, one in the future. Not all may be to the reader’s liking, yet for those who like something different, it can be found here.
A medical examiner is determined to find who killed a woman. In 1931 a head librarian must find out who is out to discredit one of her staff. The death of a tea house owner has a college student investigating. Her friend has died and Sofia can’t understand why he didn’t upload himself into the cyberget. A research mouse on a desk — how did it get there? Audrey’s making a deal and solving a murder. Getting rid of an unwanted member of the Tea Ladies may lead to murder. And a psychic prepares for a police interview when she is the last to see a man alive.
 Reviewed by: Susan Mosley

Publishers Weekly: Christmas is for Bad Girls 

No actual bad girls inhabit this happy holiday anthology—just feisty, sympathetic heroines, and heroes worthy of their love. Four stories are set in the present-day U.S., and two in Victorian England. Danger makes sexual tension run high in P.K. Tournes’s “A Partridge in Pear Treacle.” Love brightens a depressing holiday season in M.M. Ardagna’s “A Very Chunky Monkey Christmas” and a dreaded trip home in Lily Callahan’s “A Sprig of Holly.” In Yvette Franklin’s “Noisy Night,” single mom-to-be Maizy goes into labor on Christmas Eve, aided by her handsome gardener. In Jess Alynn’s “Mistletoe in Minnesota,” Emily inherits her aunt’s house and falls for the boy next door. A long wait ends with yuletide gladness when a long-lost cousin returns in Edith Elton’s “The Mad Hewitts.” Fans of quick, sweet holiday romance stories will savor this fine anthology.


Elm Books, 1175 Hwy 130, Laramie, Wyoming 82070

Friday, March 21, 2014

Elm Books Proudly Presents

We are pleased to announce a new generation of books: Gen-E Books. Children's books for a diverse America.

We are currently seeking: 

-Short stories (1,000-5,000 words) 
-Middle grade novels (20,000-50,000 words)
-Stories about children of color that will grab readers' attentions, i.e., mysteries, adventures, humor,    suspense, set in the present, near past or near future that reflect the realities and the hopes of life in diverse    communities including African American, Latino, Native American, Asian, urban, rural and international. 
-Stories should be aimed at a middle grade audience (2nd-6th grades) and written in clear, straight forward  prose. 
-Black and white line illustrations welcome, no color illustrations. 
-No sex, graphic violence, explicit drug use or slavery.  
-Deadline: July 1, 2014
-Submit inquiries to:

Do you have a story or want to write one that fits the above guidelines? If you do, we would love to read them! Come be a part of a movement to revolutionize children's literature!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Call for Stories

Do you have an unsettling story gnawing at you? Share it with us for the upcoming Death and a Nice Cup of Tea!


-Female protagonist
-Tea must be included in some fashion
-Word count: 5,000-10,000
-Deadline: June 1, 2014
-Intended publication date: Fall 2014
-Payment: share of royalties
-Email full MS to
-Please, no graphic depictions of sex or violence
-As always, we are eager to present characters of traditionally underrepresented groups: characters of color, LGBTQ characters, and characters with disabilities. The world is vast and varied, and stories are waiting to spring from every perspective.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

We want your stories!

Elm Books ( is delighted to announce three calls for stories:

CHRISTMAS IS FOR BAD GIRLS (Due August 10, 2013)
WILD WOMEN OF THE WEST (Due December 1, 2013)

CHRISTMAS IS FOR BAD GIRLS (Due August 10, 2013)
Looking for short Christmas Romances with "Bad Girl" heroines, strong sultry women who walk their own paths and the sexy men that love them.  Contemporary or historical welcome, as are tales that mix adventure and romance.


·     3,000-15,000 words
·     Deadline August 10, 2013
·      We are looking for a sex heat level 2.5-4.5 on a scale of 1-5.  We consider great sex scenes an integral part of good romance but they need to be just a part of a story with strong plot and interesting characters.
·      Elm has a strong commitment to presenting characters of color, characters with disabilities, LGBTQ characters, and non-stereotyped portrayals of under respresented groups.
·      Payment is a share of royalties. We use a modified EPIC contract.

Email inquiries or stories to


Do you have a supernatural mystery clawing its way out? An undead detective? A ghost-hunting gumshoe? A fanged Femme Fatale?  We want to see it!

Elm Books is seeking mystery short stories with a supernatural twist. The only rules are that (a) it must be a mystery story—that is, a story about the solution of a crime, and (b) the supernatural element must be integral to the plot.  Otherwise, let your imagination howl at the moon! We’re aiming for a Halloween release.


·      2,000-10,000 words
·      Deadline August 31, 2013
·      No graphic sex or violence (violent death is fine; long, loving descriptions of cruelty and gore are not).
·      As always, we’re eager to print stories with main characters from traditionally underrepresented groups (characters of color, characters with disabilities, LGBTQ characters, etc.)
·      Payment is a share of royalties. We use a modified EPIC contract.

Queries and manuscripts to: Jess Faraday at

WILD WOMEN OF THE WEST (Due December 1, 2013)
Elm Books is seeking to rethink the genre of Western romance.  We hate helpless women getting lost in snowstorms and being rescued by a brainless hunk.  We want short stories that reflect the real history and complexities of relationships in the old and current West.  While elements can be made up, stories should be firmly grounded in actual events--the massacres, droughts, fights for suffrage and over water rights that make the history of the West so compelling.  


·     3,000-15,000 words
·     Deadline December 1, 2013
.      For us the West includes Wyoming, Colorado, Texas, Utah, Montana, Idaho.  Will consider other stories with a frontier setting including space cowboy tales.
·      We are looking for a sex heat level 2.5-4.5 on a scale of 1-5.  We consider great sex scenes an integral part of good romance but they need to be just a part of a story with strong plot and interesting characters.
·      Elm has a strong commitment to presenting characters of color, characters with disabilities, LGBTQ characters, and non-stereotyped portrayals of under respresented groups.
·      Payment is a share of royalties. We use a modified EPIC contract.

Email inquiries or stories to

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Kirk VanDyke's hatred of one's fascination with an idea of wilderness

More National Poetry Month excitement!

Elm Books proudly announces the launch of Kirk VanDyke's spare and lyrical book of poetry, hatred of one's fascination with an idea of wilderness, now available at

A 9 Month Winter
struggled putting
the clothes on a cotton line
in wind with gusts
sending a plastic bag in circles
between fences
but before the last shirt
was hung horizontally
it froze in the hand