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[Publisher] Angry Robot Books

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

HapiSofi

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When they ask for word count, should it be the rounded word count or the number the computer gives you?

ie: "about 72,000 words" or "72,674 words"...I know it seems tiny, but I don't want to get deleted unread over it, lol!
Answer: Neither.

Alternate answers: Both, or either, or split the difference. There's not much difference between 72,000 words and 72,674 words when it's an initial submission; and if they buy it and edit it, the length is going to change anyway.

If you're interested, here's how to do a proper wordcount:
0. Ignore your computer, your word processing software, and all such infernal machines. None of them do proper counts. You must instead visualize your manuscript as a document printed out on paper.

1. If you're using a proportionally-spaced font, pick out ten full-width lines of average density. (Don't pick out the longest lines; pick out full lines of average width.) Count the characters in each, including punctuation and the spaces between words. Add the results and divide by ten. If you're using a monospace font, just pick out a full-measure line and count the characters in it. This is your Characters Per Line, hereafter CPL.

2. Count the number of lines on a regular page. This is Lines Per Page, LPP.

3. Count the number of pages. Subtract one-half page for every chapter.

4. Now we adjust for more complicated formats:
4a. A text break counts as one line.

4b. If you have an indented prose excerpt, or a stanza of poetry or other line-for-line text, count one line of blank space at the beginning and end of the text, and count every line in that text as a full line. Thus, if your CPL is 74, "Tea for two / And two for tea / Me for you / And you for me" is 444 characters.

4c. If your book has charts, graphs, an occasional footnote or two, illustrations, sections formatted as scripts or screenplays, or other complications, don't try to incorporate them into your character count. Count the text as though it were plain prose. As for the rest, wait until the publisher has acquired your book, then tell your editor about it at some convenient moment early in the process.
5. Multiply CPL times LPP times the total number of manuscript pages (sans title page, dedication, acknowledgements, etc.) to get the total number of characters in the manuscript.

6. Divide that number by six. The result is your character count.
The three chief virtues of this system are that it's canonical; it doesn't vary arbitrarily between applications and platforms; and it usually comes out a bit longer than the other methods.
 

Saanen

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I sent my query in on the first day, and woke up this morning to a request for full. It's made a rainy, cold day a lot brighter, that's for sure. :) I really expected it to be a rejection, too, since after hearing about the full requested the first day, I thought they were going through subs as they received them and mine had already been passed over.

They say in the email that it'll probably be several months before they get back to me. Now I just have to wait, and try not to chew my fingernails too badly.
 

tarak

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I sent my query in on the first day, and woke up this morning to a request for full. It's made a rainy, cold day a lot brighter, that's for sure. :) I really expected it to be a rejection, too, since after hearing about the full requested the first day, I thought they were going through subs as they received them and mine had already been passed over.

They say in the email that it'll probably be several months before they get back to me. Now I just have to wait, and try not to chew my fingernails too badly.
Congrats!
 

Saanen

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Thanks! The second after I hit send, I remembered that I'd intended to change a character's name. Oh well.
 

ladyinpink

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I sent in a submission (First 5 chapters, Synopsis, Character Summary's, etc) on March 1st and heard back this morning (4/2/11) asking for a full.

Fingers crossed! Still have a partial of the same book out with Harper Collins for review, and that's been 4 months now. Still agentless, but have 4 partials and 1 full out with some agents I'd love to work with.

Good luck to all who submitted to Angry Robots. They have a great reputation!
 

MikeGrant

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I submitted on the final day, so I'm not expecting to hear anything for ages.

Angry Robot are great, though - they're fast acquiring a superb reputation. No doubt helped by the fact that Lauren Beukes's ZOO CITY was nominated for the Hugo.
 

Kmarshall

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Congratulations! I have a full in with them too. Fantasy. BTW, there's another thread about them in the Science Fiction/Fantasy section below :)
 

ladyinpink

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Whoot! Awesome news Ladyinpink! What genre is your ms??? Good luck!

Thanks, Jamie :) I'm thrilled of course. It's tough when you aren't published...everyone treats you like it will NEVER happen to you. and who knows, maybe they are right and it never will happen to me, but I've come close a few times, and I think this is the closest I've come yet. Time will tell if my book is right for their publishing line, though.

It's Urban Fantasy, but it's written for the "New Adult" audience. Which means 18-30. My MC is 22, so her "voice" borders between adult and young adult and so does the content. (Hence New Adult instead of just Adult. Definitely not classifiable as YA, unfortunately, as that seems to be easier to publish these days). I also have some strong romantic elements (though my book would NEVER land a romance agent/publisher)--but I know that romance isn't Angry Robot's forte, so they may find the romance is too much for them. (Too much for some, not enough for others. Why did I do this to myself?).

Anyways, I'm not counting on anything coming of it, but it would be nice. And it feels really good that they liked my premise/characters/opening chapters enough to want to read on.

I wish everyone who gets a full request from them the very best. And the same to anyone querying elsewhere at the moment. Submissions can be a tough time. Keep busy!
 

Anne Lyle

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I wouldn't stress too much about the romance angle, ladyinpink - Mike Shevdon's UF series has a major romance subplot between the two main characters, so AR are definitely not anti-romance (despite their April Fool's joke!). I know for a fact that they are trying to extend their audience beyond the "male, X-Box generation" remit of their HarperCollins origins, so there's definite hope for anyone with a book that will appeal to female as well as male readers.
 

ladyinpink

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Thanks, Anne! That is really encouraging to hear!
 

Meira

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Checking in with those who submitted to AR. I submitted my ms on the 9th and have not heard back. It looks like most people heard back in April. . . I would think a rejection would come back faster. Do you think I made a mistake in my submission? I examined the requirements in exhausting detail and went over my submission meticulously. I mean over and over again to the point you might think I was neurotic :crazy: . . . but they said they just plain wouldn't respond if the submission didn't match requirements.

What do you think?
 

waylander

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I think they got a lot more subs than they were expecting and are still working through them
 

Anne Lyle

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They are still only about halfway through the submissions - remember there's been two holiday weekends in a row here in the UK (Easter, then the royal wedding). I think they're hoping to get through all the initial submissions by the end of this month, but anyone who's been asked for a full will have to wait quite a bit longer...
 

Debeucci

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Just out of curiosity, has anyone heard back from them after submitting a full manuscript? They asked for mine in early March right as I was about to hire a cover artist and kindle my novel. Now I'm on hold waiting for their reply. I'm debating about sending them an update request at the three month mark, but something tells me I should just wait it out.

Good luck to everyone else who received a full manuscript request from them!
 

amergina

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Just out of curiosity, has anyone heard back from them after submitting a full manuscript? They asked for mine in early March right as I was about to hire a cover artist and kindle my novel. Now I'm on hold waiting for their reply. I'm debating about sending them an update request at the three month mark, but something tells me I should just wait it out.

Good luck to everyone else who received a full manuscript request from them!

You should pop on over to the Angry Robots thread on the SF/F board:

http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=199690
 

Rolkus

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Thanks for the update Little Ming.

Time for me to dust off an old novel and finish it Pre-April 16.
 

Anne Lyle

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This is great news. It's also great news that they changed the fantasy aspect from epic only, to a more general fantasy.

Really looking forward to taking a shot with these folks now that they have, since I didn't have anything epic on hand.

Um, the only thing they're looking for right now is epic fantasy, a subgenre they haven't published much of - I think you must have the wrong end of the stick...
 

Lordofthehunt

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Sorry, i've been busy at the day-job and didn't see the changed guidelines. Obviously they've realised that "epic" is a confusing and maybe too restrictive subgenre...

No worries. I saw it a few days back and it was definitely epic they were looking for, but they've since changed it. Good news all around.