January 31, 2013

Would You Revise?


You’re lucky.  You’ve submitted an article to an editor and instead of rejecting the piece, she offers suggestions for a revision. 

When I had received articles for Stories for Children Magazine and now, when I read submissions for the Kid’s Imagination Train, I try to work with writers so that their work can be improved for publication.   Some writers like this approach, other don’t.  Below are some of the choices that I’ve seen writers make regarding revision: 

1.  They apologize for what they’ve written.
2.  They argue that what they’ve written doesn’t need revision.
3.  They give up on their submission and never get back in touch with the editor.  
4.  They ignore the editor’s suggestions and submit their work elsewhere.
5.  They send the exact piece back, with no revisions (REALLY!)
6.  They take into consideration the editor’s suggestions and try to revise.

While I’m a “hands-on” editor who likes to edit submissions, many editors don’t have the time or the interest to help with revision.  It’s easier for them to send a rejection if a submission isn’t quite right for publication; others may not even respond at all.   

Trust me.  When an editor sends you advice on how to improve your work, take it.  If she has specifically told you what your manuscript needs in order to be published—perhaps more facts, better descriptions, or livelier language are required—then work on those points to improve your submission.  She has made time in her busy day to help you.  Help yourself by taking her advice.

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