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Formatting & Submitting Your Manuscript
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41 of 43 people found the following review helpful
on March 4, 2010
After I finished reading the book, Formatting and Submitting Your Manuscript by Chuck Sambuchino, I said to myself, "Where have you been all my writing life?" This book is to formatting as Strunk and White is to grammar.

Over the past decade as a writer, I have read many books and articles about formatting. I have learned the basic rules for manuscripts, articles and queries, but I don't recall reading specifically about the correct layout for the front and back matter of a book, the table of contents or how to format the dedication and acknowledgement pages. This book has it all. A huge selling point of this book is all the examples including query letters (some even include comments from agents and editors), screenplays, articles, letters and manuscripts.

But this book doesn't stop there. Every section is packed with do's and don'ts, like when sending a query for your novel, "Do address your letter to a specific agent or editor," or "Don't state that some other agent or editor rejected your novel." There are also insights from industry professionals and information specific to a variety of genres.

The goal of most writers is to be published. Sambuchino has taken out any of the guesswork involved with sending in submissions, therefore significantly increasing the chances of being published. I loved it and believe it is a must have book for any writers personal reference library.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on October 12, 2009
I brought this for formatting book submissions. Pleasantly surprised to see it also discussions screenplays. This book also breaks down the different genres of books (fiction, nonn-fiction, childrens, romance, etc.) Informative and well written.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on April 1, 2010
I had the pleasure of editing this book. Agents and editors often pass up good ideas because they're not presented in the right format. This book will keep your idea from that fate. It tells you, step-by-step with examples, exactly what you need to do. I love the detailed, visual examples.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on March 17, 2010
With all the conflicting information regarding formatting out there in the blogosphere, whether you're a screenwriter, novelist, or freelancer, the 3rd Edition of FORMATTING & SUBMITTING YOUR MANUSCRIPT (Writer's Digest Books) is a one-stop resource you cannot do without.

Chuck Sambuchino and a slew of other editors of Writer's Digest Books have outdone previous editions of FSYM as well as similar books on the market because, not only do they provide detailed instructions on how to format screenplays, scripts, and manuscripts, they also demonstrate how to put together query letters and nonfiction book proposals. They show dozens of good AND bad examples to boot, so you can see where you fall on the spectrum.

In addition to formatting Do's and Don'ts, FSYM is loaded with tips from industry professionals such as literary agents, award-winning authors, screenwriters, playwrights, editors, and producers. Aside from all the great info, one of my favorite aspects of this edition is that Sambuchino and the gang use THE OFFICE, HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER, as well as other popular, modern shows to demonstrate proper style. Not only is it cool to see snippets of your favorite TV shows' scripts, but this touch makes the whole thing more authentic - to see this formatting in action in a "real" script as opposed to a generic one crafted by the editors just to give the example.

I highly recommend it, no matter what kind of writing you do - no matter where you are in your career. Sambuchino and his colleagues do a great job of explaining the query and submission processes in ways that are palatable enough for beginners to understand; but they also pack each page with information even the most seasoned scribes need.

I didn't even bother making room for FSYM on my bookshelf because it's one of those titles I reach for so often, it didn't make sense to keep it out of arms' reach.

Um ... did you order it yet?
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on December 18, 2010
I feel this book is worth purchasing. It has very clearly laid out pages with examples of each type of manuscript. The book also explains the submission process for each genre. However, I am always disappointed when I buy a book on writing and it contains spelling and grammatical issues throughout. I spotted them on nearly every page.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on March 20, 2012
Initially, I bought this book just to see how to properly format my manuscript, but while I was only going after silver, I got gold. I was pleasantly surprised to not only find numerous examples of the correct and incorrect formatting of a manuscript, but positive feedback from editors and agents, about what to and what not to do, was provided as well. It also helped me to finally get my query letter to where I wanted it to be. The most positive aspect of this book, that I haven't seen in others, is that it covers every genre of writing; from novels all the way to screenplays. Tailor suited information for each defined genre is available, with examples and comments to go along. This book is very informative and would be a great addition to any up-and-coming or aspiring author's bookshelf. I've constantly opened this book since I've gotten it. I would consider it a definite must have. It's one purchase I will not regret.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on February 28, 2013
this is a very useful book, but it is most useful when you can see the illustrations and examples clearly. the kindle version misses the mark on this point. get the print version.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on August 18, 2012
I pretty much agree with the 5 star reviews this book is getting. But there was just one small problem I had (not a deal breaker) but didn't see it mentioned by any of the reviews. It was under FORMATTING FICTION: Chapter Page setting says you should type it along with the chapter title 1/3 of the way down the page. Some of us will say, "How many line space down is that?" So I had to look to another highly recommended book 'Gregg's reference manual' for that answer. Which is, 6 lines down the page, and between that and the text another 2 or 3 lines.

Like I said, it's no deal breaker, but it would've been nice to be clear on it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on May 8, 2011
This book is the BEST one I have seen on the market...complete with up-to-date information on HT FORMAT & SUBMIT your manuscripts...and SAVE TIME!! Highly recommended to ALL WRITERS, published or not-yet-published. A must-have for all serious writers who demand perfection in knowing HT FORMAT & SUBMIT professionally.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on April 17, 2010
As a total newb, I have no idea about any of this (well, some idea, but not much). The book has great advice for not only manuscripts, but all correspondence with publishers and agents. Highly recommended.
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