Southeast Missouri State University Press

About the Press

“Southeast Missouri State University Press, founded in 2001, serves both as a first-rate publisher in our underpublished region and as a working laboratory for students interested in learning the art and skills of literary publishing. Though not a traditional university press in size and scope, The Press supports a Minor degree program in Small-press Publishing for undergraduate students in any major who wish to acquire the basic skills for independent-press publishing and editing.

Recognition won by our books include the John H. Reid Short Fiction Award, the Creative Spirits Platinum Award for General Fiction, the James Jones First Novel Award, the Langum Award for Historical Fiction, the Missouri Governor’s Book Award, the United We Read selection, and the Kniffen Book Award for best U.S./Canada cultural geography.”

—Dr. Susan Swartwout, Founding Publisher and Editor 

Our Mission

Our mission is to provide meaningful and essential information that serves the university and our region, state, and nation; to provide a professional publishing practicum for students at Southeast Missouri State University; and to support the experiential and educational opportunities provided by our publications.

Comments from Publishing Students and Interns

“Thank you so much for your great education in editing. It has come in so very handy since graduation, but especially in law school and my legal work.”

“Sourcebooks was the first publisher with which I got an interview, and it’s the one publisher in the Chicago area that I was most drawn to. The [Small-press Publishing] minor prepared me well for the publishing industry.”

“I am fortunate to attend a university that not only has a press but gives students the opportunity to develop the practical skills they will need after graduation.”

“The skills I acquired will be useful in almost any business setting.”

“I loved the experience and know that I want to work for a publishing office upon completion of my academic career.”

“I gained confidence in myself and improved my editing skills.”

“Thank you for the entire Small-press Publications program and all the useful, real-world skills I learned there. Not only did the experience look intriguing and beneficial on my resumé, but I now have a variety of skills I can take into any office environment, especially a press. I don’t know if the powers-that-be really understand how valuable the press is to students and to the university. But, believe me, any student who works there will quickly understand its worth, and the benefits that come after working there.”

“My time as an intern in the University Press office was a wonderful and valuable experience; I leave with the confidence that I am capable of working in a press in the future. And to top it off, I get to experience the pride and sense of achievement when a manuscript that I helped work on hits the shelves.”

“This internship will help me in the future with any of my plans. I’ve learned a lot about writing, editorial commenting, and hard work.”

“I pessimistically thought this internship would be boring odd-jobs and frustrating busy-work. How wrong I was! My internship with the University Press was a great learning experience and introductory look at the publishing world . . . a major benefit to my future.”

“This real-life experience is what landed me a job. When I was able to say in the interview, ‘Yes, I currently work in a press doing almost exactly that work,’ I knew I was making a good impression. Rather than being plugged in a single aspect of the [publishing] field, [in the internship] I have done just about everything—from editing to layout, and from reading submissions to creating databases.”

“After spending time as intern at the press and learning the inside workings of a successful business, I have no doubt that my career lies somewhere in writing and publishing., and that I made the right decision for my life. For that I will be forever grateful. This is the start of my journey.”


AJFA & interns