1. Scarecrow
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    Scarecrow Member

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    Publishing Questions

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by Scarecrow, Jul 26, 2010.

    So I have a story I would like to send it to try and get it published and I already know about Duotrope's.com so that's take care of. What I am wondering about though is, do I need a cover letter of some type and how well to publishers receive snail mail, or sound I just not bother with that? Thanks for the help, guys.

    -Scarecrow
     
  2. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    Is it a novel or short story?

    Most short story submissions these days are sent by email, as an attachment (usually .doc or rtf), with a brief cover letter in the body of the email.
     
  3. Scarecrow
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    It's a short. About 25 pages double spaced, 26-27 once I finish edits and put it into the correct format.

    And another quick question I have: I use a quote from a song, which I know is copy right infringement so it's getting removed, but is it ok to use the title of the song without infringing on anyone's ownership?

    Thanks for the help..
     
  4. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    Titles can't be copyrighted, so that's fine. The quote, as you've said, needs to go (or have permission, which will probably cost).

    In terms of the actual length, 25pages means nothing. How many words is it?
     
  5. Scarecrow
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    About 6.5 K.
     
  6. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    Yeah, that's short story territory.

    Check the individual publishers' guidelines, but the usual approach is a covering letter in the email, and the manuscript as an attachment.
     
  7. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    but it's on the long side a bit... 5k is the most preferred length for magazines, though some literary journals may take on longer pieces...

    make sure your cover/query letter is well written and gives some idea of what the story is about...
     
  8. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I just sold an 8200 word short story, so 6500 isn't impossible, but Mammamaia is correct that there are fewer markets that will accept a work that long.

    Banzai is correct in that you need to look at the guidelines of each individual market, and send it how they request, including a cover letter.

    Good luck, Scarecrow!
     
  9. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    It depends what you're selling, and where to. With sci-fi and horror, the standard seemed a few years ago to be 5k, but my experience is that it's been getting longer. For example, Interzone now accept up to 10k, and I've seen anthologies interested in pieces up to 15k.
     
  10. Langadune
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    Langadune Member

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    I hope I'm not giving you obvious advice but if you have publishers/publications in mind, check them out. They usually have submission guidelines on their websites. Most I've seen tell you whether or not they want a cover letter, whether they prefer electronic submission or snail mail. Pretty much, they tell you what and how they want it.
     
  11. Scarecrow
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    Thanks guys. That pretty much covers all my questions. But have run across a problem. The piece I was thinking of is currently posted here in a rough form with no title, so prolly not going to be able to get it published, though I still might try for a non-paying publishment so I can get my name out there. But all that's fine, I have two more shorts that I'm working on and a third that is supposed to be longer (want it to eventually be a novel) when ever I get around to picking it back up.
     
  12. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    How rough a draft is it? And is it the entire story? If it's not too recognisable as the final product, then you might be okay. But I'd mention it in your cover letter, just so that the publisher is aware.
     
  13. Scarecrow
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    Rough draft enough that it went through one edit. So the story is there just without major editing. It wa a school project so I didn't have enough time to do major edits. And that is why I'm shooting for non-pay in this and plan on including the simple fact that it's been released here in the cover letter. I still want it to go through at least 3 or 4 more edits before I try to publish it. And it doesn't show up in a Google search, I've treid.

    I had a good enough response from it during school and it's provocative enough with the female community that it might be able to slide through. But like I said I have back ups if I can get this out as a self name enhancer I'll be content.

    And when do mention it, should I place a link?
     
  14. Banzai
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    I wouldn't, unless asked. Just say that an earlier draft was posted for feedback on a writers' forum.

    Besides, the Review Room is only viewable to members, so the link wouldn't work (however, that doesn't automatically preserve first publishing rights).
     
  15. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    A member is anyone who can create an account, though, and that does include some archiver bots. We've stomped quite a few of them, but I have no doubt there are many still cruising like hungry barracuda. Some of that data still finds its way to widely-used search engines.
     

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