Welcome to City Lights Publishers
In 1955, two years after opening his paperback bookshop, Lawrence Ferlinghetti launched City Lights Publishers with the Pocket Poets Series.
City Lights Publishers’ first volume was a collection of Ferlinghetti’s own poems, Pictures of the Gone World. Within a year City Lights had published its fourth and its most famous title, Allen Ginsberg’s Howl and Other Poems, a book that revolutionized American poetry and American consciousness. City Lights has always been a champion of progressive thinking, fully committed to publishing works of both literary merit and social responsibility. With over 200 titles in print, we publish cutting-edge fiction, poetry, memoirs, literary translations and books on vital social and political issues.
All City Lights Publications are offered at a 30% discount here on our website.
Hot Off the Press
A Quilt for David
$16.95Add to cart
Diane Di Prima
Spring and Autumn Annals: A Celebration of the Seasons for Freddie
$17.95Add to cart
Diane Di Prima
Revolutionary Letters: 50th Anniversary Edition: Pocket Poets Series No. 27
$18.95Add to cart
Blood on the Fog: Pocket Poets Series No. 62
$15.95Add to cart
Featured Titles: Latinx Heritage Month
City Lights has published some of the world’s best known writers and thinkers, and we’ve also introduced an exciting range of new voices and viewpoints. Search below for information on all the City Lights authors currently in print, and a list of their works available from our site.
City Lights Authors On the Road
Find out if our authors are going to be reading somewhere near you! This page is updated regularly with our roster of authors’ event schedules.
Rights & Permissions
To inquire about the availability of foreign-language rights, English-language reprint rights, audio, film, or dramatic rights of works published by City Lights Books, please contact our Rights Associate.
To request permission to reprint materials from City Lights publications, please submit your request via email to The Permissions Company, Inc. Please include the following information: book title, author or editor, page number(s), title of poem or chapter. We will also need information on your planned publication: title, author or editor, publisher, proposed publication date, price, distribution, format, and the number of copies to be printed.
Desk & Exam Copies
Sales & Distribution
City Lights publications are distributed to bookstores and libraries by Ingram Publisher Services. Bookstores can get more information here: https://www.ingramcontent.com/retailers while libraries can get more information here: https://www.ingramcontent.com/libraries
Any questions about purchasing City Lights titles directly can be asked here.
Regretfully, we are unable to process unsolicited manuscript submissions at this time.
City Lights Publishers seeks interns on a regular basis to help support our publicity and marketing efforts.
Interns will work on a variety of publicity and marketing tasks. Our internships require 4-6 hours/week, with a 3 month commitment, and are unpaid. (Summer internships are available, as well, so please inquire about the time commitment.)
The City Lights Publishing offices are located in the City Lights Bookstore at 261 Columbus Avenue in San Francisco.
Please send a cover letter and resume to Stacey Lewis. No phone calls, please.