Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A note from our editor on submissions to Karadi Tales

Almost everyday, I receive manuscripts, resumes and portfolios from aspiring writers and artists. I love receiving them. In fact, Karadi Tales actively welcomes unsolicited submissions and we're always hoping it will lead us to something extraordinary. Sometimes, that happens, and the thrill we receive from that is incomparable. But sadly, more often, this is not the case. 

On our website, we have a Submissions page which answers most queries and makes our requirements pretty clear. Despite this, I'm always receiving enquiries and submissions that do not fit these requirements. 

Don't be your own worst enemy. Take the trouble to read our requirements. This really does help your case. As a publishing house, we expect you to both follow and respect our requirements - and it speaks poorly of you that you're unwilling to do so. So, I made this list - and I hope you'll take it in the spirit it was intended with.

Things I will judge your submission on:
  1. Don't format your text. We're not interested in pretty fonts and colourful manuscripts. It's still a manuscript and we want it to be easy to read. Single-space it, justify your text and make neat paragraphs. Italicise where necessary. You're not a typographer. We don't expect you to be one. I will judge your submission on the basis of the fact that you think it can't carry itself on its own merit. 
  2. Our submissions page mentions several times that we do not accept attachments larger than 3 MB. We are, in fact, serious about this and we rarely even open attachments that are larger than 3 MB. I will judge your submission on the basis of the fact that you didn't bother to read the fine print.
  3. Grammar is important. So is spelling. I'm not willing to capitalise your sentences and fix your commas at the manuscript stage. I will judge your submission on the basis of the fact that you didn't take it seriously enough to run it through a spell-check.
  4. I always read covering notes. They're important because I want to know a little bit about you, your submission and the nature of your enquiry before I actually read the submission. And if you're submitting a manuscript for consideration by us, I will judge you if your submission uses SMS language on the covering note. "Thks" is not "Thanks" and "u" is not "you" and "shd" is not "should". You're a writer. Write like one.
  5. At least 50% of the enquiries I receive are mere prefaces: "Do you accept submissions?" or "Can I send you my story?" or "Can I illustrate for you?". Take the trouble to look at our website. Our submissions page will answer these questions and tell you exactly what you need to send to us. You're wasting your energy and my time and I will judge your enquiry because it's ridiculous. 
  6. Karadi Tales has a strict policy of reading and responding to all enquiries and submissions. But we do not acknowledge emails or provide feedback. We respond only with acceptances and rejections. If two days go by and you have not heard from us, wait. We have lots of things going on and this may not be our priority. Bombarding us with emails won't help your case and I will judge your submission on the basis of your impatience.
There. I just needed to get that out of my system.