[identity profile] aeriedraconia.livejournal.com
Standard Manuscript Format for submission to agents or publishers:

In General:

On clean, 20#, plain, white paper (not coloured, scented, watermarked, bordered or with designs on).
Do not staple, paperclip or bind in any way the pages of your MS.
The MS should never be handwritten, it should be printed from your computer file or typewritten.
Print on one side of the page only, never on both sides of the page.

On The Very First Page:

On the upper left side of page one: Author's real name, address, phone number, and email address
On the upper right hand side of page One: the approximate word count (rounded to the nearest 100).
About half way down the page, centered should be the Title and author's name (or pen name).

The Header For the Rest of the Pages:

On the right margin: Author, Title of Story and page number. Austen / Pride and Prejudice / 2.

The Body of the Story:

1" margins all around / 3 cms in UK
Courier, 12 pt (traditional and a very safe choice) / Times New Roman, 12 pt

Do not justify the margins. The right hand margin will be all raggedy looking and that's the way it's supposed to look.
Turn off the auto hyphen feature on your word processor if you've turned it on.
Use of italics - The rule about underlining italics is relaxing so you will want to check the preferences of each person you are sending the MS to (which is always a smart thing to do regardless).

At the end of the story:

Type: The End, ##### or --30-- (so the agent/publisher knows that they received all the pages.

Calculated word count for a typical first fantasy novel are approximately 100,000 words which will turn out to be about 400 pages using the standard manuscript format above. Other genre word/page counts will vary.

I know, Courier is the grossest font evar BUT...
I finally converted and started working in Courier 12pt so I'd get used to it, was using the same standards as everyone else and could judge my progress more accurately. I grew used to it. If regular courier is too spindly for you you can try Dark courier (it can be downloaded for free).

The manuscript format is based from the measurements old print shops used (and still do) to properly calculate words per page. Nowadays Times New Roman is being accepted (but it will throw your page count off).


For Writers of Original Fiction

September 2016



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