We’ve all seen it. Start pulling some books off a shelf, and chances are you will see a prologue. However, a prologue can be a red flag. If you haven’t heard back from your editor/agent/publisher, rethink your prologue. It can be the worst offender of all. #RMFW2017 @RMFWriters @crystalpubs2014
Who are you? You are an author, an informed author. Maybe you don’t have a lot of experience yet, but you will. You will exude confidence in the publishing world. Just make sure you do your homework.
Know the INDUSTRY STANDARD FOR MANUSCRIPT FORMATTING
- For printed manuscripts, use 8 ½ X 11-inch, white paper (use only one side of the paper). Ask if you may send your ms. electronically. Many publishers will ask for both.
- Set 1- to 1 ½-inch margins all around.
- Use 12-point standard typeface: Times New Roman, Courier, Ariel
- No end-of-the-line hyphenated words or justified right margin.
- Double-space the entire manuscript.
- Indent paragraphs.
- No additional spacing between paragraphs. Be careful here. Word will sometimes automatically put in extra spacing. Check your settings.
- Add identifying information, your byline, and the header:
- Type your name, address, phone number, and e-mail address in the upper left corner, single-spaced. In the upper right corner, type the word count. You can round the word count up to the nearest hundred or the nearest ten in short pieces, if you’d like.
- Drop down about halfway on the first page and center your title. Your byline goes beneath it. These are double-spaced.
- On page two (and subsequent pages), add a header that includes your title, last name, and page numbers.
Write your Letter of Introduction. Sample from Windy Lynn Harris, www.windylynnharris.com #windylynnharris
Fabulous Writer (you)
Your address here
November 20th, 2017
Jane Doe, editor
The Perfect Magazine
107 N. Robertson St.
New York, NY 10028
Dear Ms. Doe:
I’m submitting my 600 word humorous essay, “Magical Words for Marrieds,” for your review. I think it would be a great fit with other essays I read in your magazine.
This story was created as I reflected on my thirty-five years of marriage. I am a member of Wise Women Write and have been published recently in The Chick-Lit Review.
Thank you for your time. I look forward to hearing from you.
Encl: Manuscript and SASE
See Writing & Selling Short Stories & Personal Essays: The Essential Guide to Getting Yor work Published, Windy Lynn Harris, Writer’s Digest Books
Tomorrow we will discuss what to do when you send in your manuscript and hear no response. Again, more simple solutions.