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IHeartWriting
11-21-2005, 06:45 PM
I know the publisher thought they were doing me a favor sending my entire manuscript back but I really thought that I was getting a request for rewrites, not a form rejection letter. Why not use the .37 sase I enclosed instead of spending 3 bucks to send back my dog-earred pages? Strange!

Jamesaritchie
11-21-2005, 10:21 PM
I know the publisher thought they were doing me a favor sending my entire manuscript back but I really thought that I was getting a request for rewrites, not a form rejection letter. Why not use the .37 sase I enclosed instead of spending 3 bucks to send back my dog-earred pages? Strange!

That is odd, but it happens. Trying to be nice, I guess. But you really should send postage to receive the entire manuscript back. Novel writing isn't like short story writing, and if they like your novel, they will need to send it back.
It may cost more, but that's life.

Some publishers will send nothing at all back, not even a rejection slip, unless you send enough postage for the entire novel.

IHeartWriting
11-21-2005, 10:47 PM
Thanks for your input. This raises an interesting question. How many people send a sase with enough postage to mail back a complete manuscript and how many only send a #10 for a rejection letter?

blacbird
11-21-2005, 11:06 PM
I never want the manuscript back, and always specify it as disposable in the cover letter. There's a good chance it will return in some shopworn condition, and it's about as expensive to have it the return postage and packaging in the submission as it is to reproduce a new clean copy.

And I've never had one come back. Of course, that could mean they just can't put the thing down, right?

caw.

Celia Cyanide
11-22-2005, 01:57 AM
That is odd, but it happens. Trying to be nice, I guess. But you really should send postage to receive the entire manuscript back. Novel writing isn't like short story writing, and if they like your novel, they will need to send it back.
It may cost more, but that's life.

How would we send postage? A manuscript sized SASE? And if they don't like it, do they send a tiny rejection in a big envelope?

tiny
11-22-2005, 02:16 AM
I send mine in a manuscript box with a big sticky label that has the return address and stamps already stuck to it. All they have to do is cut the tape, pull out the label, stick it over their address and send it right back to me. My manuscript travels more than I do :)


-chris

Jamesaritchie
11-22-2005, 04:40 AM
I never want the manuscript back, and always specify it as disposable in the cover letter. There's a good chance it will return in some shopworn condition, and it's about as expensive to have it the return postage and packaging in the submission as it is to reproduce a new clean copy.

And I've never had one come back. Of course, that could mean they just can't put the thing down, right?

caw.

It isn;t a matter of the condition it comes back in, or how expensive it is. It's a matter of what is done with the manuscript if they like it. When you don't enclose full postage, you're really saying, "If you like this novel, then you pay to have it sent back to me so I can make whatever change sit needs, etc."

With short stories, it often makes sense to send a disposable copy, depending on the magazine, but even with a short story there can be real advantages for having it returned.

Editors often mark up short stories, and novels, that catch their eye, even if they aren't buying them.

But at any rate, novels aren't the same critters as short stories, and the publishing procedure isn't the same.

The only reason NOT to enclude return postage is because you don't want to spend the money, and that's a poor reason.

Jamesaritchie
11-22-2005, 04:46 AM
How would we send postage? A manuscript sized SASE? And if they don't like it, do they send a tiny rejection in a big envelope?

Yes, a manuscript sized SASE with postage already attached. You can use an envelope of the right size, or you can use actual manuscript boxes made for the job, which is what I do. I use these: http://www.papyrusplace.com/

And why think negatively? You're sending out bad vibes. Don't think what happens if they don't like it (They'll still send it back, if you include postage) think what happens if they do like it. Even if they like it just enough to make comments and show you what's wrong, you're way ahead of the game.

blacbird
11-22-2005, 06:17 AM
It isn;t a matter of the condition it comes back in, or how expensive it is. It's a matter of what is done with the manuscript if they like it. When you don't enclose full postage, you're really saying, "If you like this novel, then you pay to have it sent back to me so I can make whatever change sit needs, etc."

Well, that explains my problem. I was beginning to suspect it was the bright orange paper.

caw.

Jamesaritchie
11-22-2005, 01:19 PM
Well, that explains my problem. I was beginning to suspect it was the bright orange paper.

caw.

Nah. Editors love bnght orange paper. It's a well known fact that editors are two and a half times as likely to buy a novel if it's submitted on bright orange paper. Blue paper, on the other hand, means automatic rejection.

maestrowork
11-22-2005, 04:23 PM
I think it's black paper with black ink. I got those rejected all the time.

Jamesaritchie
11-23-2005, 05:13 AM
I think it's black paper with black ink. I got those rejected all the time.

I wasn't going to mention black paper with black ink. I think there's a n automatic surse on anyone who does.

Then again, it seems to me that white paper with black ink is what gets me rejected. Maybe it's a mistake for me to submit things the editors can actually read?

blacbird
11-23-2005, 06:00 AM
editors can actually read?

(I just thought this makes a good example of how to quote something out of context.)

caw.

Jamesaritchie
11-23-2005, 07:14 AM
(I just thought this makes a good example of how to quote something out of context.)

caw.

That's not out of context. You mean you thought editors could read! Where'd you get that idea? One of the prerequsites for being hired as an editor is being functionally illiterate.

blacbird
11-23-2005, 10:15 AM
That's not out of context. You mean you thought editors could read! Where'd you get that idea? One of the prerequsites for being hired as an editor is being functionally illiterate.

A slight digression, but among my favorite editor stories is from a writer friend, who showed me the comment, so it's not hearsay. An editor sent back a recommended "correction" to his phrase "two a.m.", suggesting he change it to "two a.m. in the morning."

caw.

IHeartWriting
11-23-2005, 07:12 PM
Now THAT'S funny!

Greenwolf103
11-23-2005, 11:48 PM
A slight digression, but among my favorite editor stories is from a writer friend, who showed me the comment, so it's not hearsay. An editor sent back a recommended "correction" to his phrase "two a.m.", suggesting he change it to "two a.m. in the morning."

caw.

*slaps forehead* Talk about redundancy!

I think it's common courtesy to enclose an SASE with appropriate postage but if not, then note in the cover later they can dispose of the manuscript.

Then again, we're talking about editors who RESPOND to rejected submissions.... :Shrug:

Jamesaritchie
11-24-2005, 04:50 AM
A slight digression, but among my favorite editor stories is from a writer friend, who showed me the comment, so it's not hearsay. An editor sent back a recommended "correction" to his phrase "two a.m.", suggesting he change it to "two a.m. in the morning."

caw.

That's wild. I had an editor pull exactly the same stunt on me, though it happened years and years ago, and just once. I also know a writer who had the same thing happen.

I'd say the editor has to know that 'two A. M." means two in the morning, else they wouldn't ask for the change. Maybe the editors believe a number of readers are dumb enough not to know.

At any rate, since then, I've avoided writing "A.M." in such cases. I just write "two in the morning," and editors leave it alone.

Dhewco
11-24-2005, 06:00 AM
shoot, I barely have the money to send it in the first place, much less return it. If I get more than a couple requests, I'm up the creek. I mean sending the full, the first time.

David

Celia Cyanide
11-24-2005, 06:03 AM
And why think negatively? You're sending out bad vibes.

Yo, Celia Cyanide never sends nobody bad vibes. She uses double negatives, and refers to herself in the third person, but bad vibes? Never. ;)

Andrew
11-24-2005, 02:24 PM
Well, that explains my problem. I was beginning to suspect it was the bright orange paper.

caw.

he he Well--that made me smile this morning! Thank you.

On the question, I suggest a cost analysis be done--is it not less expensive to send a disposable copy? I suppose it depebds on whether you have access to a copier and not have to use an Office Max or something--but what a great thing! You were asked to send your manuscript! That's something to celebrate--God speed!

Jamesaritchie
11-25-2005, 06:12 PM
he he Well--that made me smile this morning! Thank you.

On the question, I suggest a cost analysis be done--is it not less expensive to send a disposable copy? I suppose it depebds on whether you have access to a copier and not have to use an Office Max or something--but what a great thing! You were asked to send your manuscript! That's something to celebrate--God speed!

Well, it's cheaper in the short term. But again, that's thinking negatively. Sometimes "less expensive" and "unsuccessful" are synonymous. Best to expect they're going to like what you submit. Best to approach writing like a business, which means not being penny wise and pound foolish.

aruna
12-12-2005, 05:58 PM
It isn;t a matter of the condition it comes back in, or how expensive it is. It's a matter of what is done with the manuscript if they like it. When you don't enclose full postage, you're really saying, "If you like this novel, then you pay to have it sent back to me so I can make whatever change sit needs, etc."

ason.

But I do say that; if they want the ms and we sign the contract, then I do expect them to return it for corrections at their own expense; and that's what they've always done. The last two mss I sent per attachment.
IMO the SASE is for rejections.

triceretops
12-12-2005, 06:08 PM
shoot, I barely have the money to send it in the first place, much less return it. If I get more than a couple requests, I'm up the creek. I mean sending the full, the first time.

Ain't that the truth. At ten bucks a ream--14.00 for a printer cartridge, and 20.00 for 1rst Class postage, it's nuts and cost prohibitive.

I now have it down to 4.00 a ream--still 14.00 for the cartridge, but 6.40 for 4th class special book rate, and even that eats into money I don't have. So I'm seriously thinking about having full manuscripts returned in the future. Either that or I better start learning how to sell 200-page novels, which is impossible.

Tri

Christine N.
12-13-2005, 07:40 PM
Here's what Miss Snark says (again, it's only one agent's opinion)


I heard from the amorphous, anonymous "they" that publishers and agents think less of you if you ask they recycle the manuscript and only send a #10 SASE. Something about not caring enough about your own work to want the 'script back; consequently, why should they care about it? This alleged advice could be pre-home laserjet paper by the ream at Costco's, or it could be crazy yak droppings, so I turn to you, Miss Snark: is there the slightest shred of truth to this?


Wait, I'm supposed to think about you?
Trust me, I don't think about you as a person at all; not one little bit.
You are the sum total of your font and paper choice.
I read the query. I respond.
If you include anything other than a #10 SASE in your query I hiss "nitwit"; Killer Yapp barks and the caravan rolls on.
I couldn't tell you one single name of a person who's queried me if I haven't asked for a partial or full ms from them.

Now, if you send me a partial or full and you include a BF envelope to send it back, then I do think about you--I think you ARE a nitwit, cause the letter I sent asking for this stuff says "#10 only".

As for editors, if you're sending u
nsolicited manuscripts to them, stop.
If you're sending solicited manuscripts, you can call and ask. Most places now will give you directions on their web site.
Editors care about good writing, and sales potential. And shoes

So pay attention to what you are ASKED FOR. Personally, if they don't like it, they can recycle it - paper is cheap at Staples (ink on the other hand... but I can even get that at a discount, and it's tax deductible). It won't come back in any form I want to send out. If they do like it, fine... mark it up, send it back... you have to send my contract anyway, so put it in the same envelope.

I've included BF envelopes for page return. Never got anything but my SASE back with a rejection... and I wasted that postage. Money's tight nowadays, folks. To say that the price isn't a good reason is silly. What it costs for me to waste money on postage for a ms that they aren't going to accept. That's like throwing away a gallon of gas for my car. Multiply that by three or four ms subs, and well.. you get the idea.

Christine N.
12-13-2005, 07:42 PM
I just wanted to add one thing.. the USPS requires that any package over one pound be taken to the counter. So if agents return those ms, they have to schlep to the post office to do it. Fine if they're sending you a contract and rewrite request, not fine if they're rejecting your work.

PeeDee
12-13-2005, 07:44 PM
I use white ink on white paper. Each manuscript is 500 pages long, exactly. They're wrapped in plastic. I mail it out, and the bastards keep just using it as scrap paper.

(It is a seriously expensive thing, sending out manuscripts, isn't it? My wife winces every time I do. *I* wince, for that matter.)

aruna
12-14-2005, 10:35 AM
Today I hand delivered a full manuscript in London. I thought they'd chase me out of the building yelling "Cheapskate!" but they didn't. I gavce it to the recptionist, she said thank you, and that was it. (I was in London for the day anyway.)