Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Giraffe Limbo

I tossed my ‘giraffe’ in the air…the rhyming manuscript about which I was so excited went off, exclusively, to two carefully chosen editors.

A month or two later, I had heard nothing; I assumed nothing.

As happens in this industry, it turns out that editor number one, for whom I had high hopes, left the publisher two weeks after I emailed her.  Editor number two has sent no reply.  Nearly three months have passed since I submitted.

I need to follow up so that I can forward the manuscript to other editors. How should this be handled? While I am out of luck with editor number one, is it as if the manuscript dissolved in cyberspace? Or do I have a responsibility to follow up with that publisher?  Editors move frequently.  What is the standard practice with manuscripts left unresolved upon that editor's departure?

With editor number two, I have a picayune protocol question: since I submitted by snail mail (as required) must I also follow-up by snail mail? Or can I shoot an email?

Rejection protocol. I know many of you have been through this before. Thanks in advance for your advice.


  1. If you are doing simultaneous submissions, I would go ahead and re-submit. It's probably okay to send an e-mail to follow-up.

  2. I would definitely send an e-mail to see what happened rather than a snail mail. I think email is the industry standard at this point. Good luck with the submission, Julie!!

  3. Julie, Was editor #1 with a small or large company? If large, then your mss. probably wasn't passed on to someone else. If you think that company is a good match, I'd submit to another editor there if you can.

    As to editor # 2, if that company has stated it's dealing only with snail mail,then perhaps you should follow their rules.

  4. Thanks everyone.
    Gale -- editor #1 was with a large co. so maybe I'll see who else might look like a good fit -- there and at other companies.
    Dawn and Ariel, thank you!

  5. Julie...I concur with Gale on Editor #2...for the first one, sending an e-mail would be fine. As Ariel said, email is an industry standard at this point, and as long as you don't abuse it...I think you'll be fine.

    Another option? Do you have a twitter account? there are sooooooo many editors and agents on twitter and maybe you can "lurk" and see what said editor is up to. I've had a few friends get tips that way! One agent even requested a submission that way for her manuscript.

    Good luck!!!

  6. I'd also consider maybe adding a #3 and #4 to the mix.

  7. I have two out at the 3 month point also. I go by what their policy says. If it says they always respond but it may take 6 months, then I wait. If it says they only respond if interested and to give them 3 months, then I move on at 3 months. (btw- nice meeting you at the conference Julie!)