re: Time Frame for Submission to Interested Agent/Editor?

in Submissions by

Dear Editor…

I am thrilled to have had several agents and an editor request full manuscripts at a recent conference. Not wanting to blow this wonderful opportunity, I have readers going over it for the umpteenth time & continue to edit, but wonder what is an appropriate length of time to submit to those interested parties?

Sincerely,

Connie

Dear Connie…

Thumbs up for your call on the final once-over. Don’t rush that revision—you’ve got several months before any of those requestors even bats an eye. They’d all tell you, very sincerely, to take as much time as you need to get the manuscript right. That said, if I were you I’d aim to finish the revision and submit no later than six months after the requests. It’s not that they’ll hold a time lag against you (they know that post-conference revising takes time and that sometimes Life gets in the way), but rather that the marketplace could shift in that time, as could the very jobs of those agents and editors. I certainly wouldn’t wait longer than a year, which editors commonly use as their limit when they extend open submission invitations at conferences.

Happy writing!

The Editor

5 Comments

  1. I’d also add that this advice holds true for requested revisions. I’ve often read that agents are always upset when they find a book they’re interested in, but it’s not quite there yet (and needs too much work to offer representation), and return it to the writer with a request to revise and resubmit, only to have the “fixed” version set back the next week. Take your time.

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