The Submission Portal is now closed

Thank you to all 4,563 submissions that we received between the 1st and 15th of October. Our reading list just got a lot longer!

We need to take a bit of time to read through each manuscript, but we hope to speak to everyone we would like to take forward on our publishing programme within the next three months.

Unfortunately because of the volume of submissions, we will not be able to respond to those people whose projects we are not pursuing.

62 thoughts on “The Submission Portal is now closed

  1. A friend of mine who submitted, just got a rejection from them today. Looks like they’re starting to respond. I also submitted, but haven’t heard anything yet.

  2. I am getting rather worried, the time ticks slowly away. I’ve already resigned that I have not been chosen, but back in my mind I have to tell myself “January 15th”. The wait is horrendous. In actuality I would think they have contacted at least a few people, but they could be under orders not to announce it. That is what scares me at this moment. That they have picked all they have wanted while the rest of us wait. I have never published, not even sure how to go about it. Agent (and if so who, I’m in Alabama they’re not springing up everywhere) or self-publish by e-book. Even that process leaves a lot to worry about. I have written quite a few things, but to have an open submission made it less threatening in a way.
    A no thanks would be nice.

    • Hopefully they will be kind enough to send a form rejection to the unselected. I will not lose hope yet and neither should you. It sounds like we are in exactly the same boat never having been published or seeking an agent. I’m leaning towards self-publishing if this doesn’t work out. Best of luck to you!


      • The whole self publishing thing is new to me also, although if I need to it is a route to go. I have an entire series that I will. That being said, I have no CLUE as to how to even go about that, I’m learning as I go, into the digital age. Living in the deep south has me further away from agents that I would like and maybe that is what makes it a little bit more intimidating to send off manuscripts to people all across the country the “old fashioned” way.

        • A word of caution. Self publishing, while an option and something many authors use, can also hurt your career more than it helps. I have several friends who are writers, both published by large mainstream houses, and self-published. The ones who are published by the mainstream houses will tell you that the process of submitting and resubmitting your book is vital to your development as a writer. It helps you to hone your manuscript. At first you will receive form rejections and then you will receive rejections with feedback. I got a rejection on a novel that came back with specific instructions on things to change and an invitation to resubmit. It helped me to see where I needed to improve. If you self publish you skip that important step. Yes you get the immediate satisfaction of being published but it’s rare that your book will go far. If you’re an established author wanting more control that’s one thing. But keep in mind that without a publishing house to market your book, all of that falls on you.

    • Try not to worry about it – easy to say I know, but I’ve been submitting my novel for a year and have have innumerable rejections, all bar one with cursory standard letters. One refusal actually came back within the hour – I somehow doubt the agent read the 10,000 words, but he probably had a full in tray and needed the hair of the dog which accounted for the ‘rush’. Just remember these chaps aren’t looking for anything other than something to make them money quickly: I’d love to be published but not on any terms, and I’m sure you feel the same. Therefore – unless you want to slot in some arbitrary S&M scenes to appeal to the prevailing sensibilities of the mass market – hang tough and send your book off to all the agents you can find. Forget self-publishing, it’s a lottery.

      • I’ve decided to self publish so people will be able to read on nook and kindle. I have a ton of friends on facebook excited to buy my book! Sure, id prefer if I got chosen by Harper Voyager but i cant wait any longer!!

    • They said they HOPE within 3 months, but they’d have to have at least 50 people reading one manuscript a day to reach that deadline…so I’m thinking it’ll be at least 4 months, if not 5. And I’d rather wait longer and know they gave everyone due consideration than they sped through them just so people could get responses faster. Don’t give up yet!!

    • I’m curious as to how many spots they are wanting to fill from those 4563 submissions. 10, 100, 1000?
      Also expect they won’t notify anyone until all submissions have been read and sorted into different stacks. Likely, there will be a fair amount disregarded quickly from serious issues with grammar and formatting (I hope I’m not one of those because I’d done some major rewriting of my first few chapters and forgot to reformat them before I sent it off). Others on the bubble will be read by multiple staff members before being voted on. It is possible, no one will be contacted prior to the middle of January. Would love to hear from someone if my guesses are misguided.

      • I think it’s an fairly accurate assumption you make. I doubt they’d want to contact people before they’re through the lot. Also, I think they said they’re looking for 12 only. One for each month of the year to release, or some such thing.

  3. I think I’d rather get a rejection now, because I just wrote Book Two in time for NaNoWriMo. It took me 22 days to get to 60000 words, and the second story’s finished. If I got a rejection now, I could reconsider publishing both books, not just the one. So in truth, I’d rather hear them say no at this point than wait until January 14 and have to assume that a non-response means a rejection at that point.

    • Did you actually start AND finish the book within the NaNoWriMo timezone?

      I agree it’d be nice to hear SOMETHING. I’m only waiting to hear before I go ahead and do it myself online.

      • ^^ same here. I am just going to self publish on if i dont hear from them. Id rather do it now than in January. If we do, is that breaking any rules?

        • I’m not sure. I don’t suppose it is, because they said they’re considering things that have been self published already, as well. But I hesitate to do it. It’s more an etiquette thing, than real rule-breaking, I guess.

  4. Has anyone been contacted yet? I haven’t but I’m nervous as hell and I guess I’m worried that something went wrong with my submission.

    • I don’t think anybody’s been contacted yet. As you can see in the comment thread directly below this one, from what various of us read on the site, it’s unlikely that anybody’s going to be contacted before January. If you got the confirmation email, or if you know that the confirmation email system wasn’t working on the day you submitted, then your submission won’t have gone wrong. They to need to read through over 4000 manuscripts, though. That takes longer than a month.

      • True. At first I nearly had a coronary with bouts of anxious adrenaline flooding my system. But reading all the comments calmed me. Along with reading these 4,000 manuscripts, they have to choose between them! If they manage all this by January I will have to tip my hat to them.

  5. Pingback: Don’t fear the (e) reader | Alastair Savage

    • Haven’t heard a dickey-bird, and I suspect most people won’t have. I doubt they’ll have finished reading the manuscripts yet. They did say they might not get back to us until January.

      • That’s true , I just figure January is the very last you’ll hear from them. I’d like to self publish online but I don’t want to break any rules..

  6. I converted my book to an .epud so I could read through it on my Nook and make notes (it’s a scifi so I’m building an concordance for consistancy)and suddenly every error just jumped out at me. I had the book read by several others and edited twice by myself, and once by my sister. Anyone else have this experience?

    • Yeah… about a week after I submitted, a friend asked to read mine, so I was reformatting the margins to make it less of an elephant to print, and suddenly I spotted a bunch of typos around chapter twelve. So far I haven’t found many others — I must have been really tired when I was editing that chapter.

    • I’ve done 3 full revisions and about a billion minor ones here and there and I still find something every so often that doesn’t make sense or is incorrect. That’s what editors are for, they go through and catch any last glitches and hiccups before it goes to print.

    • Yes, same thing happened to me after doing several rounds of edits and having it read by several people. The good news is, they said if they pick up the book they will edit it, so they are expecting some mistakes and changes. Secondly, I do not own either a hard copy or ebook from some of the most famous authors out there that I cannot find at least 3-5 mistakes in.

  7. I’m just hoping that they recieved some great manuscriots that makes them want to do this again soon! Unfortunately, my book wasnt quite at its best and needed a little more work on it before i was prepared to send it off so missed the deadline.
    I believe everything happens for a reason though.
    Good luck everyone

    • “I’m just hoping that they recieved some great manuscriots that makes them want to do this again soon!”

      That’s a happy thought! Me too! Good luck on your book, whatever you decide to do with it (next call for submissions, self-publishing, etc.).

  8. Good Luck to all! I submitted and if luck it will be great, if not then I still had a great time writing the book! Best Wishes to all!

  9. Everyone who submitted, kudos. Having written a book at all is a tremendous first step indeed. May the odds be ever in your favor (; Fingers crossed.

  10. We can’t all win, that’s the way it is; furthermore, it might be that a better effort is turned down in favour of a more marketable one. So whatever happens, chin up, believe in yourself and your own talent, and keep writing. The very best of luck to you all. x

  11. Yes. I was one of those who submitted. Thanks for reopening the submission on October 14th for us last minutes’ers.

  12. Hey, no offence Harper Collins, but can you at least drop a quick “no thanks” email to the guys you don’t pick. I, myself, will take a solemn vow not to ask for an explanation (hint to everyone else who submitted – it’s better to get a response than to not hear).

    Don’t get me wrong, I would LOVE to have my novel picked up, but if it doesn’t get picked, I’d be fine with an email that just says those two words, “no thanks”, so that I can get the manuscript ready for the long slog through the list of agents that it will have to go through and it’s actually less heart breaking to actually be told no, than forgotten.

    • I agree with this, actually. I think it would be a good idea. A form rejection, even if it’s only a couple of words long, is much better than receiving nothing at all.

      • that would actually be nice, maybe something that we cant reply to. That way they dont get harrassed with questions of why. I know if and when i get rejected, i am going to self publish online for everyone to read! But it would be nice to not have to wait until January 15th to do so lol

        • Yeah, like a no-reply email. I know that many companies have something like this because I got faced with a deluge of them when applying for a scholarship. And I agree that it would be nice not to have to wait until January 15th before we know whether or not we’re going to have to take the next step into our own hands or not.

        • LOL @ “if and when I get rejected.” I’m doing the exact opposite of that. I’m brainstorming ideas and outfits for my publicity shoots for when I get picked. :)

          A notification would be appreciated, especially before Christmas as I want to kick off my online promos starting early in December and I’m sure many others are in the same position. Can’t miss the all-important December e-book sales period.

      • They may decide to do that in spite of what they said. How much work would it be to send the same message to everyone not selected?

    • I only agree because that will make it 100% clear that I didn’t somehow accidentally mess up my email address in the form. Of course I quadruple-checked, but I can’t shake the paranoid fantasy that they are emailing someone with a very similar email MY publication offer!

    • My confirmation got sent to my junk inbox and this is all it said:

      “Your submission has been received! Due to the volume of submissions, we will not be able to respond to every one. Thank you for your interest! “

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