The Art of Acceptance

A guide to the many factors to consider when receiving an acceptance response from magazines, agents and publishers.

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Follows: Rejection

Congratulations, you’ve been accepted to be published! What now?

Being accepted for publishing is basically a writer’s career. Hundreds and hundreds of rejection letters pale in comparison to receiving the ultimate response: we want your work. Yet, it isn’t always that easy. Very rarely do publishers accept work, no questions asked, done and done.

Firstly, always read the contract before signing. Make sure you’re aware of exactly what it is you are signing away. Watch out for hidden fees. Regarding a full manuscript, the publisher pays the author, never the other way around. Signing away your work and agreeing to pay for it is the fastest way to kill your potential. If concerned, don’t hesitate to contact a solicitor to be sure.

Some publishers may ask you to not announce you are being published with them until they do. There could be a number of reasons for why they want to keep the announcement tight-lipped until a specific date, and it would be unprofessional to ignore this.

Remember to negotiate. They may be a big publisher (or even a small one) and you may be feeling grateful out of your ears, but you are still in a position to negotiate with what it is you want your relationship with them to be like. This includes edits. They may be asking for changes to be made that go against your vision, or your theme or message of your work, so don’t be afraid to tell them this. You can work it out. You’re adults.

Please don’t be a diva about it. Writing is a career. Getting too big for your boots is the fastest way to make people not want to work with you. Yes, a powerhouse publishing company may have accepted your manuscript once, but they’re less likely to do it again if you’re acting like an A-lister before you’ve sold your first batch. This goes for fans too. They can smell an unappreciative author a mile off, so remember your roots and stay humble.

And finally, enjoy it. All your work has paid off and now your writing will be published. Take a moment to be proud of yourself.

Then start writing the next thing.

Sometimes she writes. Sometimes she doesn’t. Either way, she’s not doing what she’s supposed to be doing.

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