When submitting to SBS, please pay attention to the guidelines. We put them there for a reason. While we’re not anal about the guidelines, there are certain things that we’re not willing to bend on for good reasons:

  • Submissions MUST be sent in either .doc or .rtf formats. We CANNOT open .docx files because we do not use Word 2007. There is a function Word 2007 to save your files in the required formats (save as, and then select the file type).
  • We DO NOT accept submissions in the body of the email. Why? Because emails do not format text the same way that a word processor does. That makes it incredibly difficult for us when we go to format the book. Unless you have special permission to do this, don’t.
  • When we ask you to resubmit in the correct file format, don’t assume that we’ll just read it in the body of the email. Follow directions. That’s how it works in this business and we’re treating this venture seriously.
  • Follow SFWA formatting guidelines. You don’t have to be exact, but things you really should do are: Double-space, indent paragraphs, and use a uniform-spaced font (like Courier; no Times New Roman). We read a lot of submissions; this makes it easier on our eyes and easier for us to convert over into our book file.
    Things we don’t like seeing for formatting: Those giant blog paragraphs with the extra space between them that conforms to some sort of literary standard. We’re not interested in that. We’re not going to print your story that way, so don’t send it to us in that format.
  • Do not submit to us if you’re over 25 unless you have special permission to do so. If you are a legitimately published author and are interested in contributing an article to us, then query. Otherwise, send your work elsewhere.

Hopefully that’s pretty clear. We’re not asking for much here. These are minor things. But if you follow the guidelines to a T, it shows us that you actually give a crap. When you half-ass it, we know, and it does influence how we think of your manuscript. If you can’t follow the guidelines, why would we want to work with you in the first place? Think of this like a job: If your boss tells you to clean something with soap and water and you clean it with air, would you expect your boss to just wave it off like it’s no big deal? Oh, maybe you would, because that sounds trivial, but hopefully I got the point across.

Thanks,
Shaun

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