Ooligan Press

Ooligan is a not-for-profit general trade press that publishes books honoring the cultural and natural diversity of the Pacific Northwest.

  • Frequently Asked Questions

    What is Ooligan Press?

    How does an idea pitched to Ooligan become a book? What is the process?

    How does Ooligan find books to publish?

    How long has Ooligan Press been around?

    How can I get involved with Ooligan Press?

    Does Ooligan publish actual books?

    What kinds of books do you publish?

    How many books does Ooligan publish each year?

    Where does the name Ooligan Press come from?

    I am interested in ordering your books for myself or my business. Whom should I contact? What sort of discounts does Ooligan Press offer on its books?

    I am interested in notifying Ooligan Press and its staff and students of an event in the community. How should I do so?

    My organization has an upcoming internship that I think would be appropriate for Ooligan students. How should I notify Ooligan?

    From authors:

    I haven’t yet received a response to my query letter, manuscript, or book proposal. Whom should I contact to be sure it was received?

    Another press has picked up my book while I was waiting for a response from your Acquisitions staff. Whom should I notify of this?

    I’ve seen your submission guidelines posted elsewhere (such as on Writer’s Marketplace), but they are different than those on your website. Which should I follow?

    From prospective students:

    I am interested in receiving information about the program. Would you mail me your catalog?

    What exams are required for admission to the program? Do I have to take the GRE?

    What should I include in my writing samples in my application to the program?

    I am interested in talking to someone about the program. Whom should I contact?

    I’m interested in visiting the press. Whom should I contact?

    What is Ooligan Press?

    Ooligan Press is a non-profit, general trade press located in the Pacific Northwest and dedicated to advancing the craft of publishing. Ooligan’s staff consists of educators, publishing professionals, and students within the graduate publishing program at Portland State University. We are a press committed to providing education, publishing sustainably, and producing quality books that represent the unique landscapes, communities, and people of the Pacific Northwest.

    How does an idea pitched to Ooligan become a book? What is the process?

    All manuscripts and proposals are read and reviewed by the Acquisitions department. We respond to query letters within four weeks after submission and to proposal and manuscript submissions within three months.

    How does Ooligan find books to publish?

    Ooligan publishes books by a variety of writers who are interested in a press that reflects the values and attitudes that inspire so many to call the Pacific Northwest their home. We accept both solicited and unsolicited submissions and also develop in-house projects.

    How long has Ooligan Press been around?

    Ooligan Press was founded in 2001 as a teaching press dedicated to the art and craft of publishing.

    How can I get involved with Ooligan Press?

    You can be involved with Ooligan Press by being a registered graduate student of the publishing program or by contacting ooligan@ooliganpress.pdx.edu. Undergraduates and graduate students in other programs are welcome at Ooligan Press.

    Does Ooligan publish actual books?

    Yes. Ooligan is a trade press. Our books generally have a print run of one to two thousand and can be found in your local bookstores. The form of the book depends upon its needs. We work in both traditional forms and new media.

    What kinds of books do you publish?

    Ooligan publishes literary fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and young adult fiction. Please refer to our Subsmission Guidelines if you have further questions.

    How many books does Ooligan publish each year?

    Ooligan Press publishes three to six titles a year.

    Where does the name Ooligan Press come from?

    The name Ooligan is adopted from a Chinookan word for a smelt fish, otherwise known as the candlefish. The ooligan was an abundant natural resource in the rivers of the Pacific Northwest. It may well be the word from which the name “Oregon” was derived. During the trade of the valuable fish oil to tribes east of the Rockies, the L in Ooligan was replaced with an R, creating a word that sounded like Ooregon. One theory suggests that this usage became the name of an area of land and assumed its current spelling of Oregon over the course of history.

    I am interested in ordering your books for myself or my business. Whom should I contact? What sort of discounts does Ooligan Press offer on its books?

    Individual Sales: All Ooligan Press titles are available through your local bookstore, and we encourage supporting independent booksellers. Please contact your local bookstore, or purchase online through Powell’sIndiebound, or Amazon.

    Retail Sales: Ooligan books are distributed to the trade through Ingram Publisher Services. Booksellers and businesses that wish to stock Ooligan titles may order directly from IPS at (866) 400-5351 or customer.service@ingrampublisherservices.com.

    Educational and Library Sales: We sell directly to educators and libraries that do not have an established relationship with IPS. For pricing, or to place an order, please contact us at operations@ooliganpress.pdx.edu.

    I am interested in notifying Ooligan Press and its staff and students of an event in the community. How should I do so?

    Generally, we do not advertise events to our email lists unless we know the person or organization soliciting us. Please do not send us unsolicited announcements.

    My organization has an upcoming internship that I think would be appropriate for Ooligan students. How should I notify Ooligan?

    Please contact the Director of Publishing, Dr. Per Henningsgaard, for more information on internships. per.henningsgaard@pdx.edu

    From authors:

    I haven’t yet received a response to my query letter, manuscript, or book proposal. Whom should I contact to be sure it was received?

    It is likely that your query letter, manuscript, or book proposal was received; but due to the volume we get on an ongoing basis, it can take us some time to send out responses. On our submissions page, under “Our Acquisition Process”, you will find how long it normally takes us to respond. If we have not responded within that time frame, however, please contact the acquisitions staff to check that they received your materials.

    If you know that your materials have been received and are simply eager to know our response, please be patient! While we understand your enthusiasm, repeatedly contacting us will not speed up the process or make it any more likely that we will publish your book.

    Another press has picked up my book while I was waiting for a response from your Acquisitions staff. Whom should I notify of this?

    Please contact our Acquisitions staff promptly at acquisitions@ooliganpress.pdx.edu. We appreciate your conscientiousness in notifying us.

    I’ve seen your submission guidelines posted elsewhere (such as on Writer’s Marketplace), but they are different than those on your website. Which should I follow?

    When in doubt, the submission guidelines on our website are always the most up-to-date. If you have found incorrect submission guidelines elsewhere, please send the source and the details of the listing to ooligan@ooliganpress.pdx.edu. We are not always able to correct such postings, but we do our best to make sure we are accurately represented online. Thank you for double-checking.

    From prospective students:

    I am interested in receiving information about the program. Would you mail me your catalog?

    Program information, including admission requirements, can be found on the English Department website, or the Ooligan Press website. To go directly to the application requirements, visit http://www.english.pdx.edu/GradWriting2.php.

    What exams are required for admission to the program? Do I have to take the GRE?

    There are no exams required prior to admission (including the GRE). Please visit PSU’s English Department website for full details on admission.

    What should I include in my writing samples in my application to the program?

    As on the PSU’s English Department website, we would like 15 to 30 pages of written work demonstrating promise of success in the publishing industry. This can include any type of writing within any genre—including poetry, nonfiction, or fiction—or research and scholarly writing, as in term papers. If, like some of our students, you work in bookselling or a publishing-related field, you can use work samples; any of the above are acceptable, if they exhibit your awareness of strong form and clear content.

    I am interested in talking to someone about the program. Whom should I contact?

    Please send us an email at ooligan@ooliganpress.pdx.edu.

    I’m interested in visiting the press. Whom should I contact?

    Please contact the staff at ooligan@ooliganpress.pdx.edu to inquire about the current hours. The Ooligan office is located in Neuberger Hall, room 369, on the Portland State University campus.

    Ooligan Press