Ultra Swank - Retro Adventures


Thank you for considering submitting your publication to Ultra Swank for possible review. Please read these guidelines carefully and completely. If you haven’t already, take time to check out a few of our articles to get a feel for what we’re all about.

Ultra Swank is an international blog with staff writers in Spain, Canada, and America. Our Lounge music podcast, Cocktail Nation with Koop Kooper, originates in Australia.

We welcome publications in English from publishers large or small regardless of country of origin. At this time, we do not review self-published or vanity press books.

At Ultra Swank, our focus is vintage “space age cocktail culture” and the modern Lounge Revival scene.

What we review

Ultra Swank reviews 8 to 12 books per year. This means that we only have the time, effort, and space for good books. If a book is good, it gets reviewed. If it’s bad, it gets ignored.

That said, we review anything we think our readers would enjoy and would want to add to their libraries. Usually, that means we want books on mid-20th century Western leisure culture — art and illustration; architecture, graphic design, travel & tourism, and pop culture subjects of the 1950s and 60s with occasional forays into the late 1940s and early 1970s. Further, we also want books that appeal to the kitsch sensibilities of today’s modern Lounge Revival enthusiasts.

Examples of subjects: Mid-Century Modern and Googie architecture and decor; vintage advertising and commercial signage; Lounge, Exotica, and Space music; classic American and European fashion of the 1950s and early 60s; Rat Pack era Las Vegas; tiki lounges; the golden age of Route 66; and classic film. Neo-Burlesque; low-brow art and illustration; old toys; kitsch fashion, kitsch home decor, classic and modern retro pin-up photography and vintage psychotronic movies.

As Ultra Swank is primarily an art, design, and pop culture blog, books with a strong visual appeal are favored over those that don’t have that quality. We view books as art objects and their graphic design, layout, and visual content are just as important as their written content. At the risk of sounding biased, if we were to hold up an example of the ideal book production philosophy, we could do it in one word: Taschen.

What we do not review

At this time, we only review non-fiction books germane to our subject matter. We do not review movies, TV, or music. Non-fiction books about classic movies, TV, or music are fine — just not movies, TV, nor music themselves.

We do not review fiction or poetry. However, because of their strong visual content, we DO review graphic novels.

What to submit

At Ultra Swank, we only review complete books – as in fully written AND fully designed, laid out, and ready-for-press/already printed. We do not review, or provide cover blurbs/pull quotes, based on press releases, sample chapters, promotional chapbooks, or manuscripts. Please do not submit anything other than completed books for review.

Ultra Swank considers a good book an art object that people would like to own. Therefore, we strongly prefer print books over electronic books. But we review electronic books (in screen resolution PDF format only) if they are in final finished form and match the print edition (if there is one) exactly. Even so, we prefer printed books submitted to us.

If you would like to submit screen-resolution PDF (and only PDF) sample chapters with a query before sending a complete book, that would be acceptable. (Please include download LINKS in the body of your e-mail. E-mail with file attachments will be deleted and unread.)

Pull quotes

If you would like to use a pull quote from an existing Ultra Swank review, please send us a courtesy e-mail with the article and quote you intend to use. No further permission from us is required. When providing author credit with the pull quote, please credit both the writer and the web site.

Cover blurbs

Ultra Swank would be happy to provide your book a cover blurb if your book is something we’d positively review anyway. However, Ultra Swank only reviews complete books. In order to provide a cover blurb, we require a printed or electronic (screen resolution PDF format only) pre-press proof/galley that will match the final printed book.

Legal matters

Ultra Swank, and its individual writers and contributors, make no promises or guarantees of any kind with this set of submission guidelines. Submission of a book for review does not guarantee a review, a cover blurb, pull quote, or anything at all suitable for any purpose.

We do not return review copies of books submitted to us. We reserve the right to dispose of review copies of books submitted to us in any manner we see fit. This includes but is not limited to contests, giveaways, and donations to third parties.

We do not review books in exchange for compensation of any kind.

We do not sign non-disclosure agreements (NDAs).

Contact us

If you have read these guidelines and think the Ultra Swank audience is the kind of audience for your book, please contact us.

Do not send us e-mail with any kind of file attachments. These will be deleted immediately and not read. If you have files you need to send us, please provide download links within the body of the e-mail you send.

If you want to send a book to us “cold,” please send it to:

Roman Gheesling
2945 N Amidon Avenue
Wichita, KS 67204
United States of America

Baron von Swankenstein,
Ultra Swank North American Book Desk

Thank you for your interest in Ultra Swank!

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