1. loki
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    loki New Member

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    Bad form?

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by loki, Jan 6, 2010.

    Here is my conundrum, maybe some of you can help out. I had a short story accepted for publication in an upcoming anthology. It has been three months since I heard from this publisher, and no contracts were ever sent my way, nor any kind of follow up to the initial e-mail.

    Is it acceptable to contact the publisher to obtain further info as to the publication schedule? Is it bad form to hassle a publisher in this fashion? I would really like to be involved with this publisher, but if the antho has been killed, I would like to be able to shop my piece to other publishers. I do not want to burn any bridges before they are built, but I am sort of stuck in limbo here.

    Any advice?
     
  2. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    I'd say it's fine to email the publisher to find out what is going on, if they accepted your story, and you haven't heard anything in three months. But I wouldn't submit it elsewhere until you've tried to persue the original publisher.
     
  3. Cosmos
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    Cosmos Contributing Member

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    I've never been published so take what I say with a grain of salt but it seems quite acceptable to contact the publisher since you've given them a pretty reasonable time frame to contact you. It might also seem very professional of you since it's you taking the initative. As was said though, hold off on shopping it elsewhere until you've exhausted all efforts of communication and/or the project's gone south. I'm sure there's tons of litigation issues with that.
     
  4. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    you should definitely contact them and ask what's going on!... to not do so would be unprofessional...

    have you checked out the publisher to make sure they're legit?... which one is it and what's the title of the anthology?...
     
  5. Torana
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    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

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    I agree with maia. You should definitely contact them and find out what is going on.

    Hope you get it sorted out.
     
  6. InkDream
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    InkDream Senior Member

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    If it were me I'd be on them about it like stick on glue. For all you know your story is floating around in publishing neverland. E-mail or call whoever sent you your letter.
     
  7. bluebell80
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    bluebell80 Contributing Member

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    Publishing is just like any other business, it would be bad form not to follow up with them. If it were a contract (I'm thinking like what we do in the video game business with rental equipment) that we had an agreement on, but nothing was signed yet, and we didn't hear anything from them for three months, we would contact them to find out if they still wanted the equipment from us. In that case of course, I wouldn't let it go beyond 4 weeks, but in publishing things move slowly.

    Just be sure you email the correct person, the contact person you received the acceptance letter from, or whom ever they list in that email/letter as the contact person. Write it in a professional manner, just like you would any business letter, email or snail mail. Include your contact information, address the person by full name and/or title (TO: Mr. Joe Smith, or even Dear Mr. Joe Smith.) Don't do "To whom this may concern, or Dear Editor, as this is generally frowned upon in the book industry.

    If you don't hear anything from them in a week or two, it would then be acceptable to make a follow up phone call to the person you emailed.

    I would also look into to them to make sure they are legitimate, just to be on the safe side. The BBB is always a good place to start, in what ever city/state that they are located. You can also call the Attorney General's office of that state to find out if there have been any complaints filed on this company with them.
     
  8. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    the first place to check out a publisher/agent isn't the bbb, but p&e...

    http://www.invirtuo.cc/prededitors/

    you should also go over their website carefully, to see if there are any red flags... and google for feedback from clients...
     

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