Category Archives: Submissions
Everything happens for a reason. Now, more than ever, I truly believe that to be the case.
As many of you know, I was selected as a finalist in this year’s Miss Snark’s Baker’s Dozen Agent Auction for my novel The Call of the Sea (currently querying).
I was over the moon excited about making the final 25 for the adult fiction category and couldn’t wait to see how the whole thing worked. (Well, I know how it was supposed to work – agents read your logline and first 250 words and decide if they want to read more).
As the day of the auction approached, I started to think about what the whole thing could potentially mean to my budding writing career. I could land an agent. This is serious stuff. The more I considered that, the more bothered I became. The agent I had spent a solid year stalking on twitter and Facebook, the one I had decided before I even sent out my first short for possible publication would be the perfect agent for me, wasn’t participating in the auction. I began wondering how I could go forward with this auction and not even query the one agent I really wanted to rep me. An agent that reps all the types of writing I do – fantasy, romance, some erotica, and even YA (in case Call of the Sea would make a stronger YA story than adult romance). Too perfect — how do I just ignore that?
Well, I’m not one for patience or for snubbing my nose at potential destiny, so I decided not to sit back and wait, but rather query this “perfect” agent prior to the auction and at least give her the option of first refusal. If she said no, I still had the auction.
That query earned me a request for a partial (the first 30 pages of my manuscript) from said dream agent. The high I hit when I read that request — I can’t even describe it.
The morning after I got that amazing email, the auction took place. The result of that?
Nobody wanted to read more. My entry sat on the blog for 24 hours and not a single bid. At the time, I was quite devastated and even a bit embarrassed. To think my work, writing I thought was quite good, didn’t even get a nibble is quite a blow to a writer’s already rather fragile ego (at leat this ones). What did my dream agent see that these 16 agents didn’t?
This is where the old monster, self-doubt, creeps in. I began to second guess myself and my story. Had my dram agent only asked for the partial because I had stalked her for a year — like a sympathy request? Did the minor tweaks I made to the logline and query blurb between the auction submissions and the time I queries the agent made that much of a difference?
It took me a bit of time, but I did manage to convince myself that any agent worth a salt wouldn’t waste their time requesting something they didn’t have a genuine interest in. That despite stalking and flattery, they still have a career at stake, and who would risk their reputation by repping something that sucked. I could be wrong, I guess.
Either way, I got a partial request from my first choice agent on my first ever query letter — that is something I will never forget! I don’t care how or why it happened, but I believe it all does for a good reason. Sometimes it’s better to not to look to deep into the whys behind some life’s events.
It will be a while before I hear back from the requesting agent, most likely a month or so. I am hoping for the best, but no matter which way things go, I am sure it will be because that is what was meant to happen.
That isnt going to stop me from dreaming big, though.
So, as many of you know, either by participating yourselves, or through listening to the rest of us cheer and stress as the word counts dictate, we are in the throes of the annual Nanowrimo writing event. What do they call it — oh yeah– a month of literary abandon.
Since I have been so lax in my blog postings and updates while I have been trying to submerge myself in the current WIP in the hopes of having it complete before the end of this month, I thought I would dedicate a blog post to the progress and maybe toss out a few personal updates as well.
Nano progress in going fairly well. It is always hard to find the time to pump out at least 1500 words after a 10 hour day, but I have been able to stay close enough to my goals that I have been able to make up most of my lost time over the weekends with a more concentrated “marathon” session. To that end, my boyfriend Pete and my two daughters have been FANTASTIC about being supportive and quiet, especially on the weekends. Pete and Casey even take turns telling me to get my ass back to the laptop to “get writing!” Man, I love that.
I’ve scheduled with my job to take some state mandated days off next week, so I will be home working on finishing Thanksgiving week. If all goes well, and with the wonderful support of critiquers that are staying with me and going over the chapters as I pump them out, I should be able to make my goals and get the work finished, leaving me a week to get the final edits done and maybe even get a copy to a few beta readers before December rolls around.
One can only do their best 🙂 And that is the plan.
On to my good news.
I was informed that my novel, The Call of the Sea has been selected as one of 25 finalist in the Miss Snark Baker’s Dozen Agent auction. I am over the moon about that, as you can imagine. They accepted 100 entries (don’t think they got quite that many applications, but close) and mine was chosen as a finalist, meaning that about 15 literary agents will be checking out my logline and first 250 words and potentially requesting chapters, partials, etc.
While my top pick agent (shout out here to Ms. Sara Meigbow of Nelson Literary — my dream agent) is not participating in the contest, some of my other top five agencies are. Plus, I will be hopefully sending Sara a query letter on the story as well (come December), just because I can’t let go of the idea that she is “supposed” to be my agent.
It has been one heck of a year and I expect 2012 to be even better 🙂
Instead of the usual Monday morning check-in, I decided I would visit a topic that I struggle with on a regular basis. The submission process.
When I decided to take the plunge and submit some writing for publication, I really had no clue what to do, how to do it, or what to expect. But like any good hacker — I mucked along and read submission guidelines, then crossed my fingers and hit the send button. After I got my first rejection (and yes my first reply was indeed a rejection) I thought — Okay, this has got to be the hardest part of the process.
I was so wrong.
The hardest thing for me to deal with has been the wait between sending my babies in for consideration and hearing back on whether or not these children were acceptable for the general reading public. As anyone who submits work for publication can attest, this reply can take anywhere from a few days (my shortest turn around time was six days – from Pill Hill Press) to a third of a calendar year (as I am seeing with one of my current submissions – 120 days and counting). After a while, you just learn that it is what it is, and part of the “work” of being a writer is having the patience to wait for your response — good or bad.
Recently, I had subbed in a story for an anthology. While many sites taking electronic submissions now offer a auto reply stating they received your story, so many more do not. This particular site, did/does not. I sent in my story prior to the deadline and settled myself in for the long wait to come. It wasn’t until others i knew sent submissions started to hear back that I thought something must be up. Where was my letter? My acceptance or rejection. I dropped an email to the submissions address to query them regarding my submission.
I found out yesterday, it was indeed lost in the Internet nether world and had not been received, but since the deadline had passed, that they would unfortunately have to pass. I did receive the standard — but please submit again in the future.
Suffice to say, for about 24 hours – I was devastated. My confidence screamed at me that the story is good enough to be included and if they had received and read it, I would have gotten an acceptance like some of my friends had. But all that didn’t get my story read or published. Only I could do that.
So here I am today – fresh story in hand and looking for a home. And that, ladies and gentlemen, brings me to my point for today.
If you are a writer, there will be setbacks. There will be disappointments and there will be rejections. Have faith in yourself and your stories. Persistence and confidence in yourself will be the keys to your success. The publication that missed out on my story — well, they missed out.
Like every good story, eventually it will find the right home. As it is my baby, it is my job to find out where that home is. And the only way I know to do that is…
SUBMIT SUBMIT SUBMIT… If that doesn’t work — SUBMIT again!
I got this notification in one of my email newsletters. While I am not a poet, I thought since there is no fee to enter, some of you out there may be interested in this one. Cash Prize!
WERGLE FLOMP HUMOR POETRY CONTEST – NO FEE
10th annual free contest. Fifteen cash prizes totaling $3,600.
Top prize $1,500. Submit one humor poem by April 1 deadline.
No entry fee. Winning entries published online. Final judge:
Jendi Reiter. Sponsored by Winning Writers, proud to be one
of the “101 Best Websites for Writers” (Writer’s Digest, 2005- 2010).
Guidelines and online submission at www.winningwriters.com/wergle
As I have only just started trying to send out some of my work for possible publication, this process it new to me. I am not, as a rule, the most patient of people. I have three works out now waiting for acceptance or rejection (my babies…).
I sent one to ARCT magazine, but have learned they are now on semi-permanent hiatus. No further works would be read, and all right for previously selected pieces have been reverted to the author as the magazine is closing. Bummer, but at least I know.
The second one was submitted to FlashMe Magazine for their SFH issue (Sci-fi, Fantasy, Horror). Originally, authors would have been notified by email in October, but they have extended the deadline and pushed back the publication date, as this will be there last issue before a 5 year hiatus. Slush should be read by the 15th of November and final voting on held submissions complete by tomorrow Nov. 19th. They hope to have all authors notified by Thanksgiving. No news is good news, right? I hope so as that one is a paying market.
The final short I have submitted was to Everyday Fiction (everydayfiction.com) and that story is in Process.
I find myself checking email and the site for the two still pending submissions everyday, and my hopes rise for them the longer it takes. What scares me a bit, is the higher my hopes get, the harder they will crash to Earth when a rejection comes rather than an acceptance.
For those of you who have submitted work, how do you pass the time waiting for replies? Are you like me, checking constantly, or the laid back – it will come when it comes type? How do you keep your sanity without biting off all your nails.
Inquiring minds want to know.
Just thought I would share this one with anyone who might be interested:
The Dead Robots’ Society Podcast and MWS Media, LLC are proud to announce EXPLORERS: BEYOND THE HORIZON, a short story anthology to be published in 2011. The stories in EXPLORERS will feature characters forever changed by their discovery of lands and worlds beyond their own. Whether it’s by charting new stars, trekking across fantastical realms, sailing new oceans or traversing the wild and unknown spaces between dimensions, readers will find the unimaginable in the pages of EXPLORERS.
OPEN SUBMISSION CALL:
Submissions are now open for EXPLORERS: BEYOND THE HORIZON. All submissions must be primarily science fiction or fantasy. Horrific elements are acceptable so long as the emphasis is on science fiction or fantasy. The submission period will end at 11:59PM (CST) December 31st, 2010.
- NO reprints. Unpublished manuscripts only. One manuscript per author. Do not exceed 5,000 words.
- Please follow standard manuscript formatting.
- Submissions must be sent as e-mail attachments in .rtf or .doc format to firstname.lastname@example.org.