Sunday, June 10, 2012

Submission of Major Proportions

What a ride!

Being over at Unicorn Bell all week...Whoa. I feel like my brain was scrubbed clean.

But in a good way.

Hopefully everyone was patient with my totally lack of any sort of posting here..and I still have *some* semblance of an audience.

Because I have a question. Stemming from a dilemma born of total newbie dumbassery.

So. Here's what I did.

I submitted a short story for an Anthology call from Writer and White Cat. (YAY! Stress!) Very exciting. However...all the link says is "Standard Manuscript Format" which, go ahead. Google that. I dare you. Yah. I haven't a clue what that means either.

So I asked the ladies that I moderate with over at Unicorn Bell and the consensus was 1" margins, indent the paragraphs, double spaced, Title and name on top of first page and a header on every page of page number/Story title/author name.

Easy enough, right? Right. So I did that. No problem. Worked all the formatting into the document. Then scrolled up to the top of the first page, and thought that the header of page number/title/author name looked redundant right above the section that I had centered the Title and written by on the first page. So I manually deleted it off the first page. Then immediately went into Send as Word Doc. And e-mailed it. Done! Whew! Felt great for all of about 3 seconds when I scrolled down and realized that when I had deleted the page number off the first page, it had taken the page number/etc.. header off ALL the pages. For the LOVE OF GOD! WHY!?!?! Sigh.  So I had just e-mailed a story with no page numbers. Great. Smoooooooth.

My question is this. What now? My gut says that I have to let it go, and hope for the best. But I honestly don't know. I would LIKE to send him a quick e-mail explaining what I did. But I also don't want to sound like a moron. I just want to get rejected solely on the basis of bad writing alone. Not because I 'forgot' to number my pages.

What's the opinions out there?

If anything. What NOT to do...and something I will remember to NEVER do again! HA!



  1. I understand why you did that. I had a bitch of a time in university when I was formatting reports and the like.

    I think you should just leave it. I understand that you want to get that feedback based on writing alone. but this could be chalked up to a learning experience.

    The other thing you could do is resubmit the entire manuscript, in proper format with a brief email to disregard the first. You might want to follow through with this idea, providing that the closing date hasn't been and gone.

  2. Here's two books that might help you.

    Formatting & Submitting Your Manuscript, by Jack & Glenda Neff, Don Prues (and the editors of Writer's Market).

    And ... How to Write Attention Grabbing Query & Cover Letters, by John Wood.

    Hope this helps. There's a good number of books to help you learn the basics and set you well on your way.

    Cheers and boogie boogie.

  3. Lots of good info and suggestions guys! Thanks! And I will definitely be looking into those books.

    So I did a mix of suggestions and sent him a very low key e-mail explaining what I had done, (the short version), and just asked simply if he would like me to resubmit.

    He got right back to me and man didn't I format the top of my story wrong! I think this has a lot to do with paper v. e-mail submissions. I needed to put my name, word count, home address and e-mail on the page. Interesting! This wasn't ANYWHERE that I saw in googleland. Though...everywhere I saw was 2005 or earlier. Granted...I may still be rejected...BUT! I have a fighting chance now! :) AND now I know how to do it properly. Something I will never forget...lesson learned.

  4. Pretty soon it will be second nature.

    1. I hope so! Always learning... :)


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