Friday, August 12, 2011

Focus Friday: Preventative Maintenance

My Friday morning began with a trip to the dentist.  As the hygienist scraped and polished, and then as I was reminded to floss every day (*blush*), I was reminded about how important it is to do preventative maintenance.

As a Catholic, I often joke that it's better to "beg forgiveness rather than ask permission."  But in writing...especially in SUBMITTING, preventative maintenance can go a long way–in preventing rejections.

After finishing Assignment 8 of the ICL course, in which you research markets FIRST, then craft your idea and write your piece according to a publisher's guidelines, I realized the assignment is all about doing a bit of preventative maintenance.  Sending a query vs. the entire manuscript (where permitted) is also a bit of preventative maintenance.  In writing, I like being proactive, not reactive.

By brushing or flossing everyday, I prevent cavities and gum disease.  By taking 20 minutes every day to research a new market, or review the submission guidelines of a current market, I feel as though I'm preventing disaster–(note:  I'm still waiting for my first rejection letter...will it ever come?)

There are also other preventative maintenance measures every writer can take:
1) Read books on writing
2) Attend revision workshops or retreats
3) Join a critique group
4) Google the working title of your book or idea before you submit it
5) Review publisher catalogs and read selections
6) Update your blog, website, Facebook page, resume, etc. often

What do you do even before you submit a manuscript to curb the odds of rejection?

1 comment:

Ruth Schiffmann said...

Hi Miranda, I want to let you know that Out on a Limb, Shy Writer Goes Social has presented you with a Liebster award.

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