My Submission Bounced Back. What Do I Do?

The email address for your submissions department came back undeliverable. I addressed it to [name deleted]..as I found on your [name deleted] submissions address. My question is this...I sent the first 12 chapters of my manuscript entitled "[name deleted]" to [name deleted] on Nov. 21,2011, with query letter,etc. Since then, I have completed the final chapter...#23.

Since the email came back undeliverable, I am now wondering if the manuscript even arrived at the right place. Should I send the remaining chapters, or should I just send the chapters 13-23, or should I wait and make sure this has been accepted for publication.

There are some issues with your questions. Since your email brings up several mistakes that new authors often make, I'll address each one separately.

I went to the website of the publisher you mentioned and will answer your questions according to their website submission guidelines. For other readers, please note that different publishers have different guidelines. The point of this post is to do your research on the publisher you're submitting to and follow their guidelines.

  1. The email was sent to me at the LDS Publisher email address, but addressed to me as if I were the editor at the company whose name has been deleted. I am not that person. I am an anonymous blogger. Sending this email to me here at the blog tells me that you didn't research as well as you could have. (For more information, see my mini-rant from yesterday.)

  2. Unless you met with this editor in person or you were at a writers conference where they gave you a submissions email address and requested specifically that you send your manuscript in the way that you did, then you didn't follow their guidelines. Therefore, your email may have been automatically deleted, if it arrived at all.

  3. This publisher's website specifically states that you should mail a query letter and an outline or table of contents. Mail—as in print a hard copy, put it in an envelope, and mail it to their physical address, as posted on their website.

  4. They also accept partial manuscripts of 2 to 3 chapters. Not the first 12 chapters. Unless the editor specifically requested that you send the entire book, you sent too much.

  5. Always wait until requested to send more than the query, the outline, and first few chapters.

  6. If you're sending fiction, never send a query for an unfinished work. If it's non-fiction, you can get away with an unfinished book—sometimes. As a new author, it's always better to have a finished product.

  7. Publishers and editors will need to see the entire manuscript before accepting it for publication. But generally, they don't want to see the whole thing at the initial query/submission stage.

  8. If your email came back undeliverable, chances are they did not receive it. Rather than resending the entire book, I suggest you go back to their website and find their submission guidelines. Read them carefully and then follow them to the letter.


I Am NOT the Editor at Deseret Book...

This is me.


I am an anonymous blogger who speaks to issues on getting published in the LDS industry.

Even if I were an editor at Deseret Book, I would never admit it through the avenues of this blog. Nor would I respond to emails sent to me here, but addressing me as my real-life counterpart.

The reason I'm reiterating this (and believe me REiterating is the correct usage in this case, as opposed to iterating, which is usually adequate) is because lately, I've been getting a LOT of emails addressed directly to various editors for Deseret Book or inquiring as to the status of a DB submission, but using MY ldspublisher email address.

It's not completely unheard of that someone emails me here thinking I'm a particular editor at one of the LDS publishing companies. BUT, the fact that I'm getting so many lately specifically for Deseret Book employees makes me wonder if someone hasn't posted their theory that I work for Deseret Book somewhere and said it with enough authority that others believe it to be true.

Shame on you, if you did that. Because 1) you're giving bad advice to new authors by telling them to contact a particular company in any way other than what they officially state on their website, and 2) it's just rude to try and out me!

So if you've done this—well-meaning or not—STOP IT! Correct it! And don't do it again!

Please. :)

For the record:

Yes, I do work for a publishing company. And if you happen to get it right, I do forward the email to the appropriate person.

But most of the time, you get it wrong and when you do, I am no more able to contact the correct person than you are.

And even when you do get it right, and I AM the person you need to address in real-life, the fact that you try to contact me through this avenue tells me that you're not a professional and you haven't done your homework and you're going to need more hand-holding than I really want to give. I may still accept your manuscript, but I'm going to do it reluctantly.


Wrapping Up 2011

I'm trying to get the 2011 Fiction list wrapped up and as complete as possible this week. I usually post that list over on LDS Fiction on Dec 31st, but then it's too late to encourage Whitney nominations—so I'm shooting for this Friday.

That way, you have the full list in front of you and can make last minute nominations for your favorite books.

Trust me. The Whitney people LOVE last minute nominations. They will thank you for them.

(That is only slightly sarcastic. They would really rather you nominate all year long, but any nomination before the end of the year will be considered.)

(For details on Whitneys & nominations, click here.)

But I digress. This is not a post about the Whitneys. It's a post about the 2011 LDS Fiction list. This list is for fiction titles written by LDS authors and published in 2011.

I currently have 275 titles on the 2011 Fiction list. That's a lot. But, unfortunately, I'm sure I've missed a few.

That's where YOU ride to my rescue!

Please take a moment (or 10) and go visit the LDS Fiction blog. Scroll down to view the 2011 Fiction list in the sidebar. If you know of any book that belongs on this list—and it's missing—please, please, please send me info about it. (Link to info I need.)

As far as I know, the current list is complete. I am not aware of any other books being released through the end of this year. Please correct me if I'm wrong by sending an e-mail ASAP or by posting the title of the book and the author's name in the comments of this post.

Thanks so much for your help!

Oh, and P.S. Some authors believe that if their book has a post on the LDS Fiction blog, that means they're automatically nominated for a Whitney. This is not true. My blogs have no official connection with the Whitney Awards. The LDS Fiction blog is simply to make readers aware that a book exists. It's up to the reader of the book to nominate it for a Whitney. (Authors and publishers may not nominate their own books.)


Give Books for Christmas Giveaway Hop Winner

First, I want to apologize for not being very active here this month. It's been crazy at work and everyone's been trying to wrap up the end of the year so that today will be our last official work day and we can play until January. I think I'm just about there...

And now for the winner of Stolen Christmas:

Congratulations to

Maria Hoagland

Send me your mailing address and I'll ship that right out to you.


December 2011 Prize Sponsors

Last month's prize winners announced HERE.

Please take a moment to learn more about this month's wonderfully generous sponsors.

The Death of a Disco Dancer by David Clark

One night, eleven-year-old Todd Whitman receives a terrifying but hilarious midnight visitor: his cockatoo-plumed, dementia-stricken, John Travolta-smitten Grandma Carter. In constant nocturnal search of the mysterious "Dancer," Grandma clutches her absurdly precious Saturday Night Fever album cover and giggles her way through the dance steps of her youth.

When forty-something Todd returns home to help his dying mother, he reflects on that pivotal summer of 1981: the unique relationship he developed with his grandmother, the chaos of finding his place in a large Mormon family, the near misses of impressing the one-and-only Jenny Gillette, and the utter social catastrophe of junior high.

David Clark is a terrible dancer, former fake fighter, and recovering oranger. His oranging career effectively ended when he was intercepted and physically detained in a dark alley by a victimized college football player and was then forced to either rat out his friends or have his arm broken. His friends have still not forgiven him.

He is now engaged in much safer pursuits as a corporate lawyer and formerly served as the general counsel of a major international media company, and has practiced law and lived in New York City and San Diego. He now resides with his family in his hometown, Mesa, Arizona.

Fire in the Pasture by Tyler Chadwick, ed.

"…the bounty of [this] anthology reminded me of Christ’s generosity in feeding the five thousand. Christ took real substances—a little bread, two small fish—and he created from them…food that nourished the people and made it possible for them to return to their lives both physically and spiritually renewed. Poets take matter (language, emotion, thought, experience) and make of that matter a new creation, a work of art that did not exist before the poet organized it, a work that has the potential (each poet hopes) to nourish—to make readers see what they did not see before, to offer insight, to create empathy, to provoke thought, or to express beauty, soundness, depth. To offer abundance in place of scarcity." —from the Foreword by Susan Elizabeth Howe

Fire in the Pasture includes works from over 80 poets. See complete list here.

Tyler Chadwick spearheaded the Mormon Poetry Project, collecting works from a wide variety of 21st century LDS poets. Originally from Utah, Chadwick now lives with his wife in Idaho, where he is a Graduate Teaching Assistant at Idaho State University.

Latter-day Liberty by Connor Boyack

Individual liberty is a fundamental aspect of the good news of the gospel. But what is liberty exactly, and what role does it play in our lives? Connor Boyack explores these questions and much more in this detailed analysis of historical developments, secular information, and scriptural insights. The war in heaven continues on earth today, and our agency and liberty are under attack.

A fundamental aspect of the good news of the gospel is the message of liberty. As President Joseph F. Smith said, “The Kingdom of God is a Kingdom of freedom; the gospel of the Son of God is the gospel of liberty.” Men of God, both ancient and modern, have spoken on this issue repeatedly. Latter-Day Liberty: A Gospel Approach to Government and Politics provides an analysis of what liberty is and how it applies to government and politics, using logic, reason, and secular sources of information, in addition to the abundant scriptures and statements from prophets and apostles which relate to these issues.

Connor Boyack is a web developer, political economist, and social media consultant focused on advancing the cause of liberty. Best known for his blog at www.connorboyack.com, he currently serves as the state coordinator for the Tenth Amendment Center in Utah. He is a frequent guest on radio shows and regularly publishes opinion pieces in a variety of newspapers and websites.

A California native and Brigham Young University graduate, Connor currently resides in Lehi, Utah, with his wife and two children.

Monsters & Mormons by Wm Morris & Theric Jepson, ed.

Thirty Tales of Adventure and Terror.

Run the gamut of battling demons, ghosts, zombie apocalypse, aliens, golems, ninja monkeys, mad scientists, cyborgs and more!

Authors include Nathan Shumate, David J. West, Graham Bradley, Eric James Stone, Dan Wells, and many others.

Click here for a complete list of authors and story titles.

Wm Morris blogs at A Motley Vision, where he keeps an eye on the world of Mormon arts and culture. He is a PR professional working at a nonprofit, private technical college in Minneapolis. Neither the 19th century socialist poet, artist and designer nor the leviathan talent agency, but he has a foot in both of the worlds they represent.

Theric Jepson, another AMV blogger, has been blogging since 2005, but he’s been a gadfly-in-the-making for much, much longer. Most of his professional publications have been under his legal name, Eric W Jepson, but online he is better known by a variety of monikers beginning with the digraph th. You can read his personal blog at Thmazing's Thutopia.

CLICK HERE for details on how to win these books.

CLICK HERE for details on sponsoring the contest.

November 2011 Prize Winners

Here are the randomly selected winners of last month's Comment Contest.

Thanks again to our sponsors. Please take a moment to read their info here.

Hidden in the Heart


Roseanne E. Wilkins

Winner: Rebecca H. Jamison

Commenting on: "Creating Your Own Facebook Fanpage, Part 1"

NYC: Murder Brooklyn Style


Loraine Scott

Winner: Rachel Kirkaldie

Commenting on: "Haven't You Always Wanted to Write a Book?"

Pride and Popularity


Jenni James

Winner: Gina

Commenting on: "Haven't You Always Wanted to Write a Book?"

Rearview Mirror


Stephanie Black

Winner: Stephanie
(No, not the same Stephanie)

Commenting on: "Supporting Your Facebook Friends"

To claim your prize, you must e-mail your mailing address to me by Thursday, December 8, 2011.

(Unclaimed prizes will be up for grabs later.)

Click here to learn how you can win a copy of one of our sponsoring books.

Click here for details on sponsoring the LDS Publisher blogs.