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Musa Publishing

editing_for_authors
Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.

jkenton

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Time for the link to Slushkiller?

100% of what a publisher owes you is a response, either "yes" or "no."

Feedback isn't part of it.

There's a reason for standard form rejections:
Dear Author:
Thank you for your submission. It does not suit our present needs.
-- The Editors
If you've never seen one of those before, get used to 'em. You (and every other working writer) will see them a lot.

Suppose Mickey Spillane had submitted I, the Jury to Harlequin. Would they have bought it?

No.

Knowing that I, the Jury went on to sell a zillion copies, should they have bought it?

No.

(Note: I know this is a hypothetical; Harlequin wasn't founded until a couple of years after I, the Jury was published.)

I got a rejection from Strange Horizons that contained some great feedback, and while it's still a rejection, they're at the top of my submission list now. Even though they didn't buy the story, an editor took the extra time to give me some helpful info about what they loved, and what kept them from buying the story. "It felt like an excerpt from a novel, but it's a novel we'd like to read..."

It's something they had no obligation to do, and says something about the mindset of that particular market.
 

Chris P

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I got a rejection from Strange Horizons that contained some great feedback, and while it's still a rejection, they're at the top of my submission list now. Even though they didn't buy the story, an editor took the extra time to give me some helpful info about what they loved, and what kept them from buying the story. "It felt like an excerpt from a novel, but it's a novel we'd like to read..."

It's something they had no obligation to do, and says something about the mindset of that particular market.

I send thank you emails for personalized rejections. However, I get them a lot less frequently now than I did when I first started subbing a few years ago.

Regarding Musa, they rejected my first submission to them with a line or two regarding why (the writing was good, but it took too long to get going, basically).
 

jkenton

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I send thank you emails for personalized rejections. However, I get them a lot less frequently now than I did when I first started subbing a few years ago.

Regarding Musa, they rejected my first submission to them with a line or two regarding why (the writing was good, but it took too long to get going, basically).

I'm still debating that. A rejection with useful feedback is pure gold at this point in my writing, but I know how crunched for time these folks are. Plus, many seem to come from fire-and-forget email addys. I figure about the best way I can thank those markets is to give them a higher priority than I do to markets that might pay a penny or two a word more, but haven't done me the favor or some feedback. A couple of pros I'm acquianted with have told me quiet sternly that "If you get a personal rejection saying they want you to submit more stuff, they mean it, they don't have time to solicit low quality work just to make you feel better." My biggest problem is that I've no gift for brevity, for those short, crisp stories. That means most of my work is limited to places looking for higher word counts, or houses like Musa which are interested in novellas as well as novels.

I've gotten two rejections from Penumbra, one was a form, one was a personal which was very encouraging and came at a point where I could use a little encouragement. As for Musa/Urania, I'm still waiting to see what happens with the novella I've got sitting with them. Probably going to query later this week on that. I hate to be a pest, it's not like I don't have writing to do to occupy myself while I wait... but I'm not so egotistical as to think I've submitted something so perfect it can go straight to the presses.
 

stormie

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I've noticed that from signing the contract to hearing from them regarding editing, it takes about five or six months. Then things move along with good communication. And that is when the editor will give the author deadlines for edits which can also be viewed on the Delphi site when you sign in.
 

KaitlinBevis

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Have you been given access to Delphi yet? According to the contract you should have been given access within ten days of signing, and you should have been added to the yahoo loop and make sure to friend the FB groups. But no, you won't hear much about your books before they start edits. There's tons you can work on though, once your ms is located in Delphi. Covers, blurbs, tag lines, getting your promotion stuff in place for the big day. :) lots to do
 

Chumplet

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Wallflower, depending on who you got the offer from, you might want to try responding as a reply to the offer email, if you haven't already done that. If you did reply and got no response, check to see if the offering editor is still with the publisher. You never know, the editor might have switched roles or is offline for some reason.
 

seun

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So, the cover is done. The editing is done. The re-editing is done. The galleys are done. On Sept 6th Musa will release my humble little contribution to literary fiction: Beyond the Third Garden. Musa Publishing is good. Very good!
http://www.ijsarfeh.com

Snafu, how was your experience with Musa in terms of communication, editing and expectations of your sales?
 

Snafu

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Snafu, how was your experience with Musa in terms of communication, editing and expectations of your sales?

No complaints whatsoever. The cover art was fantastic, far beyond what I could have imagined. I couldn't have made a better choice in finding a publisher for my first foray into literary fiction after my six medical mystery/suspense novels.
 
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jkenton

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Anybody have any dealings with the Urania part of the house?
 

jkenton

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My current novel is with Urania, and I just submitted the next book in the trilogy.

Can you give us any feedback on editing quality and communications with them? What type of turn-around time you got between edits, replies to queries, etc?
 

JinxVelox

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Oh gosh, it's been a while and the whole thing happened while I was in a fog of just-gave-birth-brain, but let's see...

My edits were done over the course of a few months over January, February, and March. We really took our time with it and the editor I had was quite thorough. She made sure we addressed any questions about world building and how certain powers worked in the world. When I wrote to ask questions, she responded pretty quickly - at least within a few days.

Being done by March gave them plenty of time for formatting and giving me galleys to look over before the July release date, so I didn't feel at all rushed.

Of course, that is just one individual's experience.

I have noticed that Urania titles don't get as much attention as romance as far as publicity. However, I did get plenty of feedback as far as making sure my website is effective and not a hot mess (which it wasn't anyway), and they do have a long list of reviewers you can submit your book to for a potential review. I think the lack of PR for Urania titles is my only complaint, but I'm quite satisfied with everything else (including my sales thus far) - enough that I put book 2 in their hands.
 

jkenton

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Oh gosh, it's been a while and the whole thing happened while I was in a fog of just-gave-birth-brain, but let's see...

My edits were done over the course of a few months over January, February, and March. We really took our time with it and the editor I had was quite thorough. She made sure we addressed any questions about world building and how certain powers worked in the world. When I wrote to ask questions, she responded pretty quickly - at least within a few days.

Being done by March gave them plenty of time for formatting and giving me galleys to look over before the July release date, so I didn't feel at all rushed.

Of course, that is just one individual's experience.

I have noticed that Urania titles don't get as much attention as romance as far as publicity. However, I did get plenty of feedback as far as making sure my website is effective and not a hot mess (which it wasn't anyway), and they do have a long list of reviewers you can submit your book to for a potential review. I think the lack of PR for Urania titles is my only complaint, but I'm quite satisfied with everything else (including my sales thus far) - enough that I put book 2 in their hands.

Thanks for the info! I've got a novella sitting somewhere in a Urania 2nd read pile, but I've finished some other stuff up since submitting that one. Trying to decide if I want to sit on the new work until I see what happens with this one, or go ahead and fire the new stuff at some other markets and see what works better for me. (Or just Smashwording it.) Decisions, decisions. Hoping to have some basis for comparison when I finish the main novel (Which should be about 5-10K from now for the first draft.)
 
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Old Hack

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Can you give us any feedback on editing quality and communications with them? What type of turn-around time you got between edits, replies to queries, etc?

A few months ago I looked at a number of Musa books selected at random, and found editing problems in every single one: a lack of consistency was obvious in them all, as were issues with things like basic punctuation use, and sentence structure. These problems were more than enough to seriously impact the readability of the books concerned.

I've heard from many of their writers over the last few months, and have been sent a number of emails which have been sent out by Musa (and imprints) to all its authors: these emails have been eye-opening. They were aggressive and bullying in tone, and placed the blame for some of Musa's shortcomings squarely on the shoulders of the authors.

I was appalled by them. They were extremely unprofessional, and in my opinion, abusive. I would not even consider submitting to Musa just because of those emails, even if their sales were good (which they aren't).
 

Amadan

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However, I did get plenty of feedback as far as making sure my website is effective and not a hot mess (which it wasn't anyway), and they do have a long list of reviewers you can submit your book to for a potential review.


Isn't that the publisher's job?
 

Old Hack

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Yes, Amadan, it is.
 

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