I’m still in the process of prepping Heavyweight to go out to agents and a good friend of mine, Bobby Mathews was kind enough to look over the first couple of pages for me. While he had a bunch of great things to point out to me, the one that surprised me the most was “you need to format your manuscript.”
I scratched my head. I knew he wasn’t talking about e-book formatting and agents list how they want their excerpts to come over: 12 pt Times New Roman font, double spacing, no indentations, etc. I had all that down. When I asked, he pointed me to William Shunn‘s site that showed proper formatting for manuscripts and short stories.
Oops. I had no idea things needed to be set up in that manner. Odd, that I knew scripts needed specific cover pages and whatnot, but not once did it cross my mind that my manuscript did as well. I guess as an Indie author it’s just not something that ever came up. This is why research is important folks. They could have very well thrown my stuff in the trash (or ya know…deleted the email) when they saw it wasn’t properly formatted. Or maybe they would have sent back a snarky response. Or I could have gotten a nice person who would have gently informed me of the correct way.
I’m glad I found out before queries were sent. It’s such stiff competition out there that any little thing is liable to get you pushed off the slush pile and into the “no thanks” bin. Better safe than sorry. Do your research people!
Anyone have any other bits of important info for the querying author?