Title

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kokomo
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Title

Postby kokomo » Thu Mar 29, 2012 8:19 am

Hello. I'm new here. Nice to meet you all.

I'm trying to submit to the second quarter. My question is a technical one, and it's kind of nitpick-y.

I know we are to not put our name on the manuscript, aside from the cover page -- only title and page number. However, should we put a centered title on the first page of the story (not including the cover page)? I know the title and page number will be on each page, but should we actually center the title on the first page of the story text (in addition to it being on the cover page)?

Kind of long-winded. Sorry. I am snail-mailing mine tomorrow (Friday). It says postmarked by March 30. I hope they mean it. I just don't trust e-submissions.

Thanks in advance!

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MJNL
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Re: Title

Postby MJNL » Thu Mar 29, 2012 8:47 am

Hello fellow snail-mailer!

Yes, you should put a centered title on the first page (especially since the first page is technically not supposed to have a header, so the title will be the only way to definitely identify it as YOUR STORY, page 1).

Good luck!
~Marina

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Strycher
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Re: Title

Postby Strycher » Thu Mar 29, 2012 8:48 am

It's your paper/snail mail submitting, then yes you need a cover sheet with both your real name and your byline. If your submitting electronically the online form is your cover letter and you absolutely do NOT include a cover letter or your name anywhere in the document.

It specifies this in the contest rules page, I think.

kokomo
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Re: Title

Postby kokomo » Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:22 am

MJNL wrote:Hello fellow snail-mailer!

Yes, you should put a centered title on the first page (especially since the first page is technically not supposed to have a header, so the title will be the only way to definitely identify it as YOUR STORY, page 1).

Good luck!


Well, you gave me two bits of useful info there.

I know with a normal manuscript, the Cover Letter is Page 1, then you start with the header on Page 2. But with WOTF, our cover letter is to be a separate document altogether -- so, I assumed we might as well start the header on Page 1 of the story (not including the cover letter).

But, now I know that even with this manuscript, we are to start the header on Page 2.

In other words: thank you, MJNL !

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MJNL
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Re: Title

Postby MJNL » Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:28 am

You're welcome!

And, actually, in most cases short story cover letters are separate documents--but in those cases you should put the same contact information on the top of the first page of the actual manuscript as you in the cover letter (Name, address, phone, e-mail, word count, disposable or not). See this article for manuscript formatting: http://www.shunn.net/format/story.html (so, this, plus your cover letter).

But most editors aren't that picky, so don't sweat it if you've submitted before and have put it all in one document.

ETA: And it sounds like you've got most of the formatting basics down already, so kudos. You're well ahead of where I was when I started entering this contest.

Hope that helps.
~Marina

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WotF Finalist Q2 2010 (Vol. 27)
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kokomo
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Re: Title

Postby kokomo » Thu Mar 29, 2012 11:30 am

That explains a lot! Very helpful link.

But does this mean we should also be putting our word count on the first page of the story?

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MJNL
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Re: Title

Postby MJNL » Thu Mar 29, 2012 11:44 am

I haven't in the past, but I don't think it would hurt you to do so.

There's a bit of a debate as to how they determine the word count in this contest. Word processors all seem to count differently, and the traditional method used back when typewriters were the norm was to estimate 250 words a page (when properly formatted, of course). Some have suggested the judges use the old method as their primary guideline (some people have been disqualified for "going over the word count" when their word processors told them they were under--shooting for 68-70 pages max seems to be a good idea), so it may not matter what actual number you put on the manuscript.

Sorry, sure that just confuses you more. But, in short, either way is fine I think, as long as you definitely put it in your cover letter (because even if they count funny, they still ask you to state it somewhere).
~Marina

WotF Winner Q1 2012 (Vol. 29)

WotF Finalist Q2 2010 (Vol. 27)
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soulmirror
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Re: Title

Postby soulmirror » Thu Mar 29, 2012 12:14 pm

MJNL wrote:I haven't in the past, but I don't think it would hurt you to do so.


If your story is pages more than 68 pages ... but under the stated 17,000 word contest rule ...

I'd certainly tell KD that it's under 17,000 words, just so she knows.

It's the same philosophy about formatting: Don't give them an easy excuse to set it aside.

("Ooops, 78 pages?! I'm setting it aside. No, wait ... there's the word count: 16,500 words. Hey -- this story IS pretty good, after all, glad I read it!") wotf008
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IOTF:Winner Q1 vol.27 (3x Finalist); WOTF: HM x2

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MJNL
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Re: Title

Postby MJNL » Thu Mar 29, 2012 12:38 pm

Yes! Good point.
~Marina

WotF Winner Q1 2012 (Vol. 29)

WotF Finalist Q2 2010 (Vol. 27)
WotF Finalist Q4 2011 (Vol. 28)
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kokomo
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Re: Title

Postby kokomo » Thu Mar 29, 2012 1:31 pm

Thanks for the tips.

So if we use the 250 words per page method, and the last page is only 50% filled with words, can we round it down to 100 (half of 250 is 125, and then typically we round to the nearest hundredth, correct?)?

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MJNL
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Re: Title

Postby MJNL » Mon Apr 02, 2012 6:25 am

Whoops, missed your last post there.

Yes, round to the nearest 100. I still go by my word processor count, even if they don't, but use whichever method you think works best at this point (I have seen editors say they want you to go by your word processor, but clearly this contest is different.)
~Marina

WotF Winner Q1 2012 (Vol. 29)

WotF Finalist Q2 2010 (Vol. 27)
WotF Finalist Q4 2011 (Vol. 28)
http://lostetter.wordpress.com/
http://twitter.com/#!/MarinaLostetter

kokomo
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Re: Title

Postby kokomo » Wed Apr 04, 2012 11:08 am

Good. I did that. Thanks for your help, Marina!


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