This post is part of the Blogging from A to Z challenge–blogging every day in the month of April (except Sundays!) with each letter of the alphabet.
On the last day of the challenge, I’m going to focus on the end of one part of the writing process and the bridge to the next: the submission. Zipping up your work and sending it off into the world can be nerve-wracking, and there’s so much to remember you might feel a little intimidated. As someone who has gone through the process a lot, I’m going to offer a few pieces of advice to make it easier on you.
Make sure you have everything: There is no sinking feeling in the world like hitting the ‘send’ button and realizing you forgot to attach something. Sure, you can do an ‘oops, forgot this’ follow up email, but how embarrassing. Make sure everything you need to send along is attached (and it’s the right things) and all the information you need to provide is in your cover letter. I’m a stickler for checking multiple times to make sure everything is good to go. This is an important interaction and you want to make the best first impression you possibly can.
Follow guidelines: Don’t deviate from the editor or agent’s guidelines for any reason. Some editors and agents will immediately reject any submission that deviates from their rules–cause ain’t nobody got time for that. You just helped them trim their submission pile which, make no mistake, is huge. If you want to survive the hacking, be professional, courteous, and follow their guidelines to the letter. Even if you think a guideline is silly, they have a reason for implementing it.
Check small details: You may do all the big things right and have some small detail trip you up. I operate several email accounts through Gmail, so I check to make sure I’m using the right email address when I send something out. Make sure THEIR email address is right, too. Make sure your attachments actually attached. Spell check your cover letter. Don’t let some small, silly detail screw up everything.
Keep track: You may send out multiple submissions, so keep track of where your work is going and when you sent it out, as well as when you can expect to hear back from the person you sent it to. This will help you from going as crazy.
That’s the end of the challenge! Do you have any additional tips for zipping it up and sending it off?
Thank you so much to everyone who visited my blog, read my posts, and commented this month–I’ve had a lot of fun doing this and making new friends! I’m quite sorry to see it end and I’ll definitely be doing it again next year. I had no idea when I started this how it would change me as a blogger. I never expected so many people to show up and chat with me, to tell me their stories, and to be so engaged in my posts. I am truly touched. If you want to continue following me and talking to me here, or on Twitter or Facebook, you are certainly welcome!
By the way, now that this challenge is over, I’m moving on to the next! Come join me in May for NaBloPoMo, blogging every day in May about photos! I’m a bit of a blogging addict now…
Hope to see you there–or at least here!
Urban fantasy and paranormal romance author.