Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Format unbecoming

It's kind of a drag to send off a story and get a form letter email a few months later with the "not right for us at this time" thing and "feel free to submit to us again."  (So you won't call the FBI on me?  That's kind.)  These are the publishing world's equivalent of "keeping your resume on file".

I was disappointed but, in this case, not too surprised.  The submission guidelines specified that the text of the story were to be embedded in the body of an email.  Now there are outlets, I'm sure, that have reason to be paranoid about attachments: viruses and the like.  _______ might probably have their reasons.  But the truth is that manuscripts just look better in, well, manuscript format.  And in the body of an email you lose a lot of that and everything gets squished together. 

So, I'll be looking for an alternative in the next couple of days.


susan said...

At least in the past you'd get a form letter in the mail and could imagine the envelope containing a contract and a cheque for a few minutes.

I know what you mean about printed manuscripts looking more book-like, but if the guidelines specified the story be sent by email, my guess is they wouldn't even read it otherwise. It's too bad an attachment wasn't acceptable either.

Ben said...

Ah well, I suppose imagining a check would lead to disappointment if there was none.

Yeah, for email submissions I prefer attachments. You know what everything looks like when you send it, with all the spaces and page numbers and everything. I resent this story afterwards to a magazine that uses Submittable, which isn't too bad.