1. swarupa
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    swarupa New Member

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    How long do I wait a submission?

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by swarupa, Jan 28, 2012.

    Hi, How long does one have to wait after submitting a full manuscript in response to a first interest email? I've waited for a month and a week. I did send two emails in the interim period but didn't get any reply. My full manuscript email also didn't get an acknowledgement reply. I'm worried. Pls reply. Thanks!
     
  2. Nicholas C.
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    Nicholas C. Active Member

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    I, too, am kind of curious in this regard... I submitted a short story for a print anthology and am worrying how long I should wait to query. It's been 3 months, but I'm imagining I should be waiting a little longer. Maybe 5 or 6, perhaps?
     
  3. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't know what you submitted or where, but here the publishers say on their websites that they will try and give an answer within a certain amount of time, usually 3 months. Maybe the ones you submitted your stories to has written something about it on their websites too? As for myself I have been waiting for replies for my novel ms submission for exactly three months now, and so far I have gotten four rejections. I think it will take quite some time to get all of the answers, but at a certain point I think I'll contact them and ask. (they usually doesn't have anything against it.) Maybe another month or so and then I'll send an email or call. If they say within three months I think it's legitimate to contact them after more than 4 months.
     
  4. swarupa
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    swarupa New Member

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    Thanks for sharing your stories too Nicholas and Tesoro!
    I'm wondering whether I should get a literary agent for it or just wait till the publisher to whom I had mailed the full manuscript gets back with a reply.It's just that who have been through my manuscript liked it very much.
     
  5. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    how long did their submission guidelines say they take to respond?... the general rule of thumb is to give it 1-3 months after that period runs out before calling to ask if they're still interested and/or withdrawing it...
     
  6. joanna
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    joanna Active Member

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    Was this a solicited or unsolicited manuscript to the publisher?

    If it was solicited, they usually tell you or else you can find the info on their website.

    If it was unsolicited, I don't know. Ages. Maybe never. Publishing houses generally have huge, huge stacks of submissions that they put in a room for some assistant to look at at some undetermined time. I've seen pictures of these 'slush piles' online. They're massive. Some (many?) publishers don't even accept unsolicited manuscripts, so if that's the case your submission is in the trash.

    So, don't hold your breath. I highly recommend getting an agent.
     
  7. swarupa
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    swarupa New Member

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    their submission guidelines say within 3 to 4 months. The thing is, when I sent them my synopsis they got back after two weeks asking for the full manuscript as they had first interest in it. I told them I hadn't yet completed it and would send it to them two months later. When I did complete it by that period and sent it, I didn't get any acknowledgement reply nor did I receive any reply to my subsequent two mails..
     
  8. swarupa
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    swarupa New Member

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    It was solicited...How much does a literary agent charge?
     
  9. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    agents don't 'charge' a fee... literary agents get 15% [usually] of all you make on a piece of work... and only get paid when you do...

    and your major mistake was querying before you had a completed, polished ms ready to be submitted!... i suspect that's the reason you haven't gotten a response... by the time you sent in the ms, months later, either their interest had waned, or they forgot they even had any, or if you didn't have a proper cover letter referring to them having solicited the ms, they treated your submission as an unsolicited one and it's languishing at the bottom of one of many slush piles...

    i suggest you call the person who asked to see the full ms and explain the delay and ask if s/he got it and is still interested in publishing it...

    and next time, get an agent first... and never query until you are ready to send a full, polished to a faretheewell ms immediately upon request!
     
  10. joanna
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    joanna Active Member

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    That's awesome that they had interest -- it shows you've got promise as a writer -- however, they probably became less interested when they found out it wasn't completed (mammamaia is right -- complete your ms before querying!) That probably has a lot to do with why they haven't gotten back to you.

    A literary agent doesn't charge you anything. They won't ask you for any fee up front until they sell your book -- at which point they get a commission, usually 15%. (Any agent who asks for a fee up front is a fraud.)

    Best of luck.
     
  11. swarupa
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    swarupa New Member

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    You know when I sent the mail to the publisher about completing the book in two months he replied within ten minutes and we exchanged mails a couple of mails that time wherein he commented upon the protagonist's character and suggested a few ideas. After that there was no communication..
    Another thing is that an editor who is also a reputed literary agent has expressed her interest in representing my book. So what do I do? Wait for the publisher's reply or sign on the agent who is very good. In case I sign her and later the publisher replies with their interest in publishing it, can I say no? or do I say yes?
     
  12. swarupa
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    swarupa New Member

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    Thanks, Joanna:)
     
  13. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    who's the publisher?... did you vet him thoroughly and are you sure he's totally legit?

    fyi, publishers don't deal directly with writers usually and certainly not within minutes!... it would normally be an editor at the publishing house who'd correspond with you, so i have to be somewhat skeptical about this guy...

    once you sign with an agent, then she'd handle all negotiations with publishers... so you'd say nothing, she'd be dealing with them per your instructions, upon her advice... who's the agent?

    count yourself lucky to have beaten the odds thus far, in getting interest from both ends of the process!
     
  14. swarupa
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    swarupa New Member

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    It's a small press and he's the director of it...and they accept email submissions..he had suggested that I get the manuscript vetted through this editor who is also a known but new literary agent..but I sent it just like that since I had done a careful editing myself..Since I didn't get any reply, I asked her for a edit quote for which she first wanted to have a look at the full mss...so I mailed it to her for which she later sent the quote... she also suggested that I sign her as my agent


    She sent me a contract that stated commission 20% for domestic sales and 25% for foreign.. the wordings in the six-year contract like "undertakes to sell all rights to the work throughout the world" and "60 days of termination notice" feel so strange to me...are they common? I have to pay her for editing the mss and she gets her commission too on the sales and subsidiary rights, etc... is it ok?
    Can the mss be sent to another big publisher through her, even if the mss has been sent to the small publisher?
    Or should I approach another known and established literary agent?
     
  15. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    you're being conned!... withdraw your submission and don't have anything more to do with these folks...

    no legit publisher will tell you to pay a particular 'editor' to 'fix' your ms... and no legit agent will also charge a fee for editing your work... plus, the standard agent's commission is 15% domestic/20% int'l, not 20/25!...

    send each of them a letter that says you are withdrawing your ms from consideration... you do not have to give a reason... keep it short and sweet and definite!... then be sure to check out any other agents you may want to query very carefully before doing so... start by seeing if they're listed on preditors & editors...
     
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  16. swarupa
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    swarupa New Member

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    The publisher's scholarly and research books imprint is very reputed while his romance/thriller imprint is new with three published books...Here in India editors who are agents charge for editing work, some at a concessional rate...and I've been told that the few known agents here charge 20%

    Ok, I'll send an email for withdrawl of my mss from the publisher as well as the editorcumagent...there won't be any hassles, right? Btw, none of the reputed Indian literary agents are listed in P&E :(
     

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