Friday, June 7, 2013

Question from a writer: Changes After You Submit A Manuscript

I have been querying a romance novel that is the first book of a planned trilogy. However, after research I have not included that it is the first book in a trilogy. I received a rejection on a full recently because the agent said that she found the plot was left a bit unresolved and she would have liked a more satisfying ending. What would you suggest for an unpublished author to do in this case? I have 4 other fulls and 2 partials out and am now afraid I may now get the same response, would you suggest sending a email informing them or leave it be?

This is a great question. I will say, every agent may answer this differently, but here is my take on it.

I personally would say, if you are not happy with the ending of the project and think you will change things around, I would contact the people you sent it to. Now here is the twist. I would recommend simply having them pull the story from their TO BE READ pile. Let them know that you have reconsidered a few things about the story. In other words, get it out of the pile so it isn't considered a submission.

I would not recommend telling them you have some changes, or by sending those changes to them in a second submission. I often feel, when I have authors who send me a "new version" after they had the chance to edit more, that I have authors who are rushing things and probably shouldn't be submitting in the first place. You want to give the impression that you are submitting stories when the projects are finished and not still in the "work in progress" phase.

Once you have pulled all of the projects with a polite email, then go back to work and make the story exactly as you want it to be. THEN, when it is finished, re-submit the project. I wouldn't bring up in the query letter that you sent the editor/agent the project earlier and decided to change it. Just submit it as if it is a new project. Besides, unless they have a database where they keep track of things, they probably wouldn't remember you or the project.

Hope that helps!

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