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Great Smoky Mountains Association Publications

Since 1958, Great Smoky Mountains Association has supported a vibrant publications program in service of its mission to support the perpetual preservation of Great Smoky Mountains National Park by promoting greater public interest and appreciation through education, interpretation, and research. 

Today the association maintains more than 100 publications in print and distributes more than 1 million pieces annually. These products include books, pamphlets, exhibits, audio tours, CDs, DVDs, maps, and toys. 

GSMA is responsible for managing its interpretive products program with guidance from the National Park Service. One of its goals is to generate revenue for Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which is accomplished by ensuring a balance between the publications of scientific and educational subject matter with books and other products that have wide appeal to a large audience.

Submissions for Retail Product in Park Stores 

Retail Director Dawn Roark handles requests to include previously published books as sales items in Great Smoky Mountains National Park visitor centers.

Send samples of the publication to Dawn Roark, 416 Cherry Street, Gatlinburg, TN 37738. Include contact information along with cost and retail. The samples will be given to National Park Service personnel for review. If the book is accepted by NPS, GSMA will make a business decision to make it available in the visitor centers and on our website. If GSMA decides to carry the publication, a GSMA representative will contact you to set up an account.

Submissions for Publication

If you have an idea for an article that GSMA might want to publish in Smokies Life magazine, please send a paragraph describing the idea to frances@gsmassoc.org, and receipt will be acknowledged along with a timeline of when to expect a response.

Great Smoky Mountains Association publishes those book-length original works that meet the highest standards of scientific and historical accuracy and exemplify excellence in writing and illustration. Original works considered for publication should promote environmental stewardship of the national park, convey the significance of the natural resources the park preserves, or elaborate on the complex human narratives rooted in the Smokies region in a compelling way.

Great Smoky Mountains Association’s book publications program focuses on the following genres and niches: 

  • Books on the history of Great Smoky Mountains National Park
  • Books on the human history of the area including African Americans, the Cherokee, and early white settlers
  • Smokies-related biographies and human-interest stories
  • Books focused on conservation and stewardship of park resources
  • Hiking and camping guides related to the Smokies’ region
  • Travel guides that enrich the park visitor experience
  • Field guides highlighting the flora and fauna of the region
  • Photography and art books related to any of the above
  • Children’s and young adult books related to any of the above

Proposals for books and publishing projects may be directed to GSMA Creative Director Frances Figart at frances@gsmassoc.org in the form of a one-page proposal in a Word document detailing the following aspects of the work:

  • relation of the author or coauthors to the topic at hand
  • brief synopsis of contents, structure, and interpretive aims
  • intended audience for the work
  • estimated length of the work expressed in word count
  • estimated extent of the work expressed in page and illustration count
  • expected manuscript completion date

Receipt of the proposal will be acknowledged within one week of its arrival. The GSMA creative director, publications staff, and publications committee of the board of directors will review all publications proposals. If the proposed project is considered viable, appropriate, and in keeping with GSMA’s mission and publications philosophy, the submitter will be notified of interest and next steps, which will likely include submitting an outline and several chapters. If the work is not deemed appropriate for GSMA to publish, the submitter will also be notified.

Note: No hard copy printed manuscripts will be accepted or read. Please allow up to three months for a response from the date of proposal submission via e-mail and e-mailed acknowledgement.

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GSMA is pleased to bring readers these past issues of Smokies Life magazine free of charge.  Known as “the missing issues,” they are no longer in print, and unless you can find an old copy in a bookstore, they are not available anywhere else. You can find our missing issues here.