Did My Manuscript Arrive Safely?

You checked your final draft, and typed it out in double line spacing on white sheets of A4; you included a covering letter, and posted it, with an SAE, to us here at the Fiction Desk…

But…you haven’t heard back yet. So how do you know if your story has been safely received, and how long should you wait before checking?

It can take upwards of sixteen weeks to receive a response from the team, and can take longer in a busy year like this one, as we celebrate our 150th Anniversary.

All submissions are logged on receipt

Before we read your manuscript, it’s sent to the Admin Team to be logged and given a unique identification number. All submissions are postal; email submissions are only accepted from overseas authors, with the exception of rewrites.

Once your short story is logged, it’s placed in the reading queue. So how do you know it reached us safely?

Enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard

The easiest way to confirm your story has arrived safely is to include a stamped, self-addressed postcard, when you send your story in. In the space opposite your address, writing ‘Confirmation of receipt – (Title of Story) – by “The People’s Friend”‘ is helpful for your own reference. So when our Admin team open your envelope, they’ll simply return your postcard right away – and you’ll know your submission has arrived safely, and is under consideration.

Always keep a copy of your story

Keeping a note of the title, and the date it was posted, will make it easier for us to check on your story’s progress should you call or email to check. And although it’s extremely unlikely that your manuscript will go missing, we always recommend keeping a copy of all submissions, just in case.

Finally, if your story is seasonal, it may take longer to receive a response, pending scheduling.

Find more advice from the Fiction Team and Fiction Ed Shirley on the Fiction pages

Lucy Crichton

Fiction Editor Lucy is always on the look-out for the very best short stories, poems and pocket novels. As well as sourcing enjoyable content, she enjoys working with our established contributors, encouraging new talent, and celebrating 155 years of 'Friend' fiction!