Friday, March 21, 2008

The benefits of having an online journal

One of the benefits (handicaps?) of writing in your online journal that you will do something -- is that you feel obligated to do it.

Yesterday I mumbled to myself (see previous post) that I really should get the Leprechaun story back into the mail. Which made me feel guilty enough that I sat down today and did it. I revised it one more time. (It's still not as short as I feel it needs to be.) And by 5:00pm, as the Post Office was closing its doors, I skooted in and mailed it. To three places.

Yes, all three places will take multiple submissions -- I researched that on the 2007 SCBWI list of Children's Book Publishers to make sure. Then I jumped over to Harold Underdown's website to make sure that the editors listed in the Fall list of Publishers were actually still at that publisher. He tracks this on his "Who's Moving Where" page.

The most interesting thing I discovered in this new list of Children's Book Publishers was the change in how to send out manuscripts.
--Several Publishers want picture books simply e-mailed to them.
--Others said we were to send it by mail -- but that they would only respond if they wanted to publish. We would know it had been rejected if they never heard from us again. DO NOT send a SASE. (To which I made a note to self to consider it rejected if I hadn't heard back within 4 to 6 months.)
--And a few publishers requested the traditional type of submission. Please enclose a SASE for our us to send our response back to you.

How do I keep track of what is where?

Next I record what I had done/ who I had sent copies of the manuscript to on both a computer file in the leprechaun folder and on the 4X6 Leprechaun file card in my paper card file. Actually I use two cards. A yellow card is a master card of every manuscript that is out, and where to, and when I should expect a response. In another spot I have separate white cards for each separate manuscript. On these cards I have a record of every place I have sent this ms.

In the front of the file box are the white cards of all the manuscripts that are NOT out in the mail. To remind me to revise them and get them back out, again.

How do you keep track of your submissions?

Oh, and in addition to this frenzied manuscript business, today the 8-year old went to two egg hunts. Actually, one was a "Kiss" hunt where there were a few plastic eggs with prizes and thousands of Hershey kisses to scoop up off the ground. The other was a neighborhood hunt and evening cookout. What can I say. Sometimes I think Marylanders are a little bit crazy. Yes, it was 45 degrees, but cookout it was.

Tomorrow she'll attend another egg hunt (if it doesn't rain or snow) and then decorate real eggs for her indoor Easter Egg hunt Sunday morning. Whew!


1 comment:

Cheryl Reif said...

Hi Wendie--Thanks for your thoughts on recording manuscripts. I've tried a variety of methods, but had a hard time keeping up with any of them but the simplest: a series of index cards taped to my office wall, listing manuscript, where I submitted it, and the submission date. Your method sounds like one that will work with me--but provide a little more detailed tracking!