Watch those subject lines
There are so many agents and publishers taking electronic submissions these days. All you gotta do is fix up a nice quick "cover letter" email, and hit the check spelling button, then send that baby off, right?? Boy, do I wish.
I usually go a step further than this and write my letter on Word, hoping to catch misuses, repeats, grammar, and so on. Then I proofread, put it away for a few days, then proofread again. Finally, I copy and paste it into my email body....then I finally hit send.
I try--really--to be so careful.
But I always forget to proofread that darn SUBJECT LINE. And I'm really beginning to wish you could spell check the subject line because once I wrote Submission as SBUMISSION and another time I wrote it as SUMISSION...all to the same publisher. Oops.
As soon as I hit send, I saw the misspelling and wished I could undo, undo, undo. The Subject line is what editors see before they even look at your cover letter or your synopsis or even your story. Misspells on the Subject Line cannot be cool.
Now I didn't receive a rejection letter that actually said, "I cannot believe you can't even spell SUBMISSION. We are so not looking at your proposal just because of that." (okay, fine, I confess I actually sold that story), but it was still way embarrassing. Not only did it make me feel unprofessional, but it had to start that editor off with a bad first impression.
So, hey everyone, don't forget to proofread the subject line too before you hit SEND!!!
(PS: I actually re-read the subject line for this post and found out I'd spelled Lessons as LEASONS. Yay, I actually followed my own advice for once!)