11.22.2005

ARGHHHHHHHHH

Further on breaking the rules:

The funniest thing about the article (don't go into seizure Miss Snark) The manuscripts were bound!

Miss Snark faints dead away.
The only things WORSE than unsolicted manuscripts are bound unsolicited manuscripts.
This calls for a double dip of the gin pail.

9 comments:

Bonnie Calhoun said...

You're going to need a really big gin pail to get through screening every single post. :-)

Debby Garfinkle said...

Wow, I made the Snarkblog! Cool! I read this thing every day. It's a great procrastination tool. I'm the one who got an agent by sending in my bound 200-page manuscript.

A professor who taught at U. of Iowa's MFA program told me to send the entire manuscript rather than querying first. He said he told all his students that. (He taught me at a retreat.)

The binding part was just plain stupid.

My novel has done well (great reviews, sales to Germany and Italy, possible film sales), my agent has sold two more novels for me, and I expect her to sell a fourth one in the next month or so. Looked at my unsolicited manuscript paid off for her-- and for me, she's a terrific agent.

I enjoy reading your blog and USUALLY agree with your advice.

Cheers!

Debby Garfinkle,
author of STORKY: HOW I LOST MY NICKNAME AND WON THE GIRL

Yza said...

One of the suggestions I've found a few months ago in a book by a French author about how to... well, getting published, was this very matter of binding manuscripts. The solution he offered was to use one or two of these large black pliers that can firmly hold a ream of paper but may also be easily removed (sorry, I don't know if they have a specific name in English). His opinion on the matter was that this way, whether the editor preferred bound manuscripts or wanted to be able to take only a few pages with him/her to read in the train, you couldn't get it wrong.

I'm not sure what the consensus is in the USA, but at least the idea seemed logical enough to me.

Sponge Girl said...

"large black pliers that can firmly hold a ream of paper but may also be easily removed"

Bulldog clips?

Bernita said...

Some agents/editors do suggest using fold back binder clips (pinces relieuses) to secure a requested full manuscript instead of an elastic band or loose in a padded ( plastic bubbles - not the other kind) envelope.

Miss Snark said...

I have one million big fat binder clips in my office if anyone needs any. Rubber bands work just fine.

Bonnie Calhoun said...

Well Debbie Garfinkle, welcome to Snarkland!!!

I read your article...now I could never get away with all those things that you didn't know because I know, Miss Snark teaches us to know better!!

Congrats on your other books!
sit, stay awhile...y'all come back now hear!

Sal said...

I have one million big fat binder clips in my office if anyone needs any.

Your local school or library would bless you for donating your binder clips, your rubber bands.

Harry Connolly said...

A professor who taught at U. of Iowa's MFA program told me to send the entire manuscript rather than querying first. He said he told all his students that. (He taught me at a retreat.)

It's funny. On another board, I met a writer who had learned from an MFA professor that she should ignore magazine guidelines when submitting her short fiction. Specifically, writers could submit simultaneously to several markets at once, even if the markets said they didn't accept them. Those guidelines were for people who were not in the know.

She got pretty, um, tense when I disagreed, and when I quoted the actual editors who said she was wrong.

I wonder if it has something to do with MFA programs in general. Is there a rule-breaker aesthetic that has changed their attitude to the rest of the process?